Medial Tibial Sress Syndrome

November 24, 2013

Shin splints or Medial Tibial Stress Syndrome  is one of the most common running injuries effecting the lower leg.  This condition most frequently occurs in athletes involved in running sports such as athletics, long distance running,  triathlons, and football.  Symptoms will include tenderness on the inner aspect of the tibia and pain will be present during and possibly after running.  It commonly occurs following a sudden increase in training volumes (eg. The start of pre-season training ).  Shin splints is an overuse injury and often involves the muscles tibialis posterior, flexor digitorum and flexor hallucis longus and can also effect the periosteum (membrane around the bone where the muscles attatch).

The following are the Sportscare top 5 tips to prevent shin splints.

Control your load when training.

The most important way to prevent injury is to build up slowly with running distance and to have rest days after any long running sessions.  The speed at which you can progress your program is dependent on your fitness level and previous running experience.

Ice after exercise

Applying ice on the inner aspect of the lower leg following training will help reduce the inflammation and pain associated with shin splints.  An ice pack should be used for 20 minutes every 2 hours.

Stretch your calf muscles

Tightness in both your gastrocnemius and soleus muscles (calf muscles) are very common in patients who are suffering from shin splints.

Muscle release techniques

Soft tissue massage, cupping and acupuncture (dry needling) are some of a variety of techniques used by physiotherapists  to release tight muscle tissue which could be contributing to a patient’s symptoms.

Biomechanical assessment

A lower limb biomechanics examination from your physiotherapist will help address any factors which may predispose you to lower limb overuse injuries.  Your physiotherapist will also be able to assist you with choosing the correct shoes for your foot type and chosen activity.

For more information on managing shin pain or assistance with setting up a training schedule feel free to contact us to make an appointment for an individual assessment.

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Adam McKenzie

Adam has worked in private practice for the past 14 years and is now full time at Warana Sportscare. Adam has extensive experience in orthopedic rehabilitation and was involved with office/workstation assessment for office workers when working in London.