How to Prevent Shin Splints 2009-03-27 10:00:00

Ways to Prevent Shin Splints

Spring running often means increasing the intensity of your workouts, but this vigorous approach can lead to shin splints. Aside from following the 10 percent rule, here are a few things you can do to prevent that nagging lower leg pain.

  • Stretch your lower legs. Keep your calves, feet, and ankles flexible. Stretch them daily, even if you don't run that day.
  • Warm up with heel walks: Heel walks, which as the name suggests involve walking on just the heels, strengthen the shins and prepare the lower leg for running. I do this as part of my dynamic warmup.
  • Strengthen your lower legs: On non-running days, or after a run, you can strengthen your shin muscles with this simple dumbbell exercise. Doing weight training for the shin muscles before a run could tire them out and lead to the injury you're working to avoid.

Since most running injuries seem to occur when increasing weekly mileage, it is a good idea to be proactive and do what you can to prevent injuries. Take care of your shins and they will take care of you.

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