When an athlete complains about shin
they're referring to a pain in the front of the lower
leg between the knee and ankle, or shin.
Athletes that over train without properly conditioning
and warming up their muscles will often cause micro
tears in the tendons and muscles,
or bone fractures in the calf region. These injuries
result in painful inflammation.
Shin splints seem to occur mostly among inexperienced
runners who fail to stretch and warm-up in the proper
manner prior to activity. However, anyone engaging in
high-impact sports can experience the pain that comes with
Shin splints aren't really a single medical condition.
Instead, they're just a symptom of an underlying problem.
They might be caused by:
Irritated and swollen muscles, often caused by overuse.
Stress fractures, which are tiny, hairline breaks in the
lower leg bones.
Overpronation or ''flat feet" -- when the impact of a
step causes the arch of your foot to
collapse, stretching the muscles and tendons.
Shin splints are very common. They're the cause of 13% of
all running injuries.
Runners might get them after ramping up their workout
intensity, or changing the surface they run on -- like
shifting from a dirt path to asphalt. Shin splints are
also common in dancers.
Whether you jog daily or just had to sprint to catch a bus
one day, you may have shin splints when you feel throbbing
and aching in your shins. While they often heal on their
own, severe shin splints can ruin your game.
Shin splints cause dull, aching pain in
the front of the lower leg. Some people feel it only
during exercise; others, when they've stopped exercising.
Sometimes, the pain is constant.
Depending on the exact cause, the pain may be located
along either side of the shinbone or in the muscles. The
area may be painful to the touch. Swollen muscles can
sometimes irritate the nerves in the feet, causing them to
feel weak or numb.
To diagnose shin splints, your doctor will give you a
thorough physical exam. He or she may want to see you run
to look for problems. You may also need X-rays or bone
scans to look for fractures. Other tests are sometimes
Although shin splints may be caused by different problems,
treatment is usually the same: Rest your body so the
underlying issue heals. Here are some other things to try:
Icing the shin to reduce pain and swelling. Do it for
20-30 minutes every three to four hours for two to
three days, or until the pain is gone.
Anti-inflammatory painkillers. Nonsteroidal
anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs),like ibuprofen, naproxen,
or aspirin, will help with pain and swelling. However,
these drugs can have side effects, like an increased
risk of bleeding and ulcers. They should be used only
occasionally unless your doctor specifically says
Arch supports for your shoes. These orthotics -- which
can be custom-made or bought off the shelf -- may help
with flat feet.
Range of motion exercises, if your doctor recommends
Neoprene sleeve to support and warm the leg.
Physical therapy to strengthen the muscles in your
In rare cases, surgery is needed for severe stress
fractures and other problems that can cause shin splints.
Always wear shoes with good support and padding.
Warm up before working out, making sure to stretch the
muscles in your legs... especially the calves.
Some slow ankle rotations will warm up the shins and
help prevent shin splints.
Stop working out as soon as you feel pain in your shins.
Don't run or play on hard surfaces like concrete.
Shin Splints (Tibial Stress Syndrome)
Partner Bodyweight Exercise of the Month!
Yup... the idea behind this exercise is simple enough, but the
challenge comes depending on who you're carrying! Once
you can easily perform 25 or so bodyweight squats, it's time
to add some weight (or just keep increasing repetitions).
The Partner Fireman's squat is a convenient way to do so... as
long as you have a cooperative partner ; ) You can start
out with one of your children and work your way up.
Although you can also perform this exercise with different
carries such as the standard "piggy-back", I like the
fireman's carry position since it is comfortable and provides
good clearance for your legs.
Target: legs and butt
facing your partner, grabbing your partners wrist or arm with
your same-side hand, then reaching your arm through the
partner's legs (elbow deep) to grab their same-side leg
(example: you're left hand on partners right arm, your right
arm around partner's right knee). The partner can assist
by leaning over your shoulders behind your head.
Execution: While keeping your head and chest up,
squat down by pushing your butt backwards and focusing on
keeping your knees in line and directly over your toes.
Drive back up to the standing position and repeat for reps.
Good Read: Heart of a
If you really want
to be inspired for competition, or just to get your @$$ in
gear to workout, then I HIGHLY recommend a book called "The
Heart of a Champion" by Bob Richards.
Bob Richards was
an Olympian gold medal winner in the pole vault (1952 & 1956)
and his book shares incredible stories of athletes, overcoming
hardship and disabilities, hard work, human spirit,
determination, and everything that athletics and competition
is all about.
printing of this book was 1959 but the stories are
inspirational and timeless. I heard about it while
watching a Dan Gable wrestling video where this legendary
Olympic wrestler and Iowa coach spoke of the book with such enthusiasm that
I had to check it out. I picked it up recently off of
Amazon for $7.91 in soft
cover (142 pages) and it is one that I plan to keep
permanently in my collection!
This book should
be required preseason reading for any athlete or coach to get
your head on straight and the proper mindset to have a
productive season. As stated in the book "life does not
determine a champion; a champion determines life"... Enjoy!
Cut your lunch in
half and wait 45 minutes to eat the other half. Yeah, I
know... if you're anything like me, this is easier said than
done. Plus it's not always easy to do with work and
limited lunch times. However, you will be less likely to
overeat if you try this type of strategy. It typically takes
roughly 20 minutes for your body
to feel full. This means that when you gobble up your
meal you are more likely to overeat since you are not giving
your body time to recognize that you've had enough.
If splitting the
meal in half and waiting for round 2 doesn't work, then at
least try to slow it down a bit. As mentioned
previously, a nice big glass of water before your meal can be
a good appetite suppressant and slowing
Both of these
tactics require some discipline. Another good practice
of discipline is to try to
leave at least 1 bite of
food on you plate of your regular meals.
I know I know, my mom always made me clear
my plate too. But, I think that we're past the need to
put some meat on your bones now, don't you?
It's Go Time!
March... it's more than just a
month! Try marching in place for a period of time and
you'll see what I mean. Seriously, get those knees up,
exaggerate your arm motion, and keep a brisk pace. You
can even space it out with some other stuff... march for a
minute... pushups... march... sit-ups... march...etc...
Marching is a low impact exercise with less jarring to your
joints since one foot remains in contact with the ground at
all times. It also has the added benefit of abdominal
work based upon the effort of keeping those knees up!|
Not a fan of that? That's fine...
then March your butt down to the gym and get in a good workout
with sufficient intensity to make your body realize why you're
there! Showing up is a start, but once you've committed
yourself by getting there, make sure that you get the best
return on your (time) investment. Focus on your goals
and your workout and you'll be happy that you did!
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things are possible to him who believes"
Mark 9:23 NKJV
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Javorek Shoulder Complex
Istvan Javorek's Dumbell Complex for Shoulder Strength and