I often get asked about shin splints, especially by our newer runners. Shin Splints is an irritation or pain in the shin caused by increased running – which is why I often see it with new runners but could also be caused by increased running due to training for an event.
To recover then the first thing is to reduce the running mileage, depending on the level of pain this does not necessarily mean cutting running out altogether, but reducing the frequency and/or distance. Try cycling, swimming or cross trainer to keep fitness up but with less impact. If the shin is very irritable then rest is best!
As the pain becomes more manageable strength exercises are vital, exercises such as squats with added weight are good. Plyometric exercises are a vital component to the recovery, these are exercises often involving jumps or hops, which help build tolerance and capacity to the lower leg muscles and bone. These exercises should be PAIN FREE! Running should then be increased gradually as long as it is comfortable.
Please see attached information sheet from REACT physiotherapy for more information on this common runners’ injury. Hope it helps!