by James Laughlin, PTA
Shin splints are commonly experienced by both recreational and competitive athletes. Shin splints, clinically known as medial tibial stress disorder, is an aggravation to the inside of the shin at the bone (Tibia). The primary symptom is pain which generally increases with activity. There may be tenderness to touch and swelling along the inner side of the shin. If left untreated shin splints can become more serious even resulting in stress fractures. Physical therapy is a great option in treating the condition and getting the athlete back into action.
Purported causes of shin splints are wide ranging and include improper fitting foot wear, flat feet, weak hip and core musculature, and improper training plans. A thorough screen can help determine what specifically is the cause of your injury.
Treating injuries is multimodal and involves relative rest, stretching, strengthening and review of run technique to minimize strain. Our therapists can employ manual techniques to facilitate healing as well as modalities such as Dry Needling and Astym to treat underlying muscle and tendon concerns. Additionally, our therapists will work with you to find a safe level of activity to maintain fitness while decreasing the likelihood of aggravating the injury. As symptoms improve to the point that return to run is recommended our therapist will analyze your running gait. Based on the finding we will make recommendations to get you back to running safely and efficiently.
As with all injuries early intervention is always the best strategy. Delaying treatment typically results in longer treatment times and complications. If you suspect that you have shin splints schedule a consultation with one of our team members and we can help guide you to the best resources to recover and get you back to your activity.