Shin splints and shin pain is a common complaint that we see at Your Podiatry Canberra. It is particularly common in sports such as running and mainly distance runners. It can also occur in any sports that involve running such as football, soccer, AFL and netball.

Shin Pain Vs Shin Splints

Shin pain is usually pain in and around the tibia or shin bone.  You may experience shin pain with a sudden increase in the frequency and duration of an activity.

Shin splints describe the pain along the inside border of the tibia. However, this term doesn’t describe the injury adequately.  There are multiple unique causes of shin pain which deserve a more specific diagnosis.

Shin pain or shin splints generally involve one or more specific causes such as:

  1. Bone Stress/Stress fracture
  2. Lack of blood flow
  3. Inflammation
  4. Micro tears in the muscle
  5. Nerve Entrapment

Causes of Shin Splints & Shin Pain

  1. Flat Feet: Flat feet can pull at the shin tendons and cause irritation.
  2. Incorrect Technique:  Pronation or “rolling” the feet inwards, or landing heavily on your heels
  3. Overuse: Overuse is one of the most common causes of shin splints.
  4. Running Shoes: Wearing the wrong type of running shoe has be known to contribute to shin splints
  5. High Impact: Running on hard or uneven surfaces


How to Treat & Manage Shin Splints

A podiatrist can help you effectively treat & manage any shin pain or shin splints


  • The Rest, Ice, Compression & Elevation rules still apply. Read more here.

2. Watch out for HARM factors

  • Sometimes you will need to avoid the HARM factors  ‘Heat, Alcohol, Running and Massage’ as these may increase blood supply to the injured area and cause more inflammation.

3. Biomechanical Analysis

  • A biomechanical analysis by your podiatrist can help you identify the different stressors you are placing on your shins.

4. Strength Exercises, Foot Posture Correction Exercises

  • Incorporating strength exercises into your weekly routine can increase a muscles ability to cope with the stresses of activities such as sport or running.

5. Stretching Exercises

  • Another key area to add to your weekly routine is a stretching regime.  Stretching with correct technique will reduce the stress on your muscles during activity.

6. Dry Needling

  • Dry needling is a useful tool used in allied health practices that can help you heal faster by accurately targeting specific areas.

7. Remedial Massage

  • Remedial Massage will help to improve your flexibility and therefore decrease tension in tight and sore muscles.

8. Orthotics, Heel cups, Shoe Prescription

  • Your podiatrist can advise you on whether you may need to have orthotics, new shoes or gel cups to alleviate the pain and to correct biomechanical issues. Read more about orthotics

9. Taping/Strapping

  • Supportive taping of the foot or calf can be effective in reducing the stress on the muscles and other tissues of the shin.


In summary…

  • Buy the right shoes and replace your shoes every 400 to 600kms
  • Consider getting orthotics
  • Cross-train or add variety to your workouts
  • Add strength training and stretching routines to your weekly activities


Where Can I Get Help for Shin Splints or Shin Pain?

Why not schedule a time for an appointment and receive our new client Welcome Voucher.

Our initial appointment involves a comprehensive client history, foot assessment, leg assessment, gait analysis, diagnosis, treatment and a personalised ongoing treatment plan. You can discuss any concerns with our experienced Canberra & Gungahlin Podiatrists during your appointment.

You can either BOOK ONLINE or simply Call 6262 4464 to schedule your appointment with one of our friendly reception staff. We’ll help you find the right solution so you can Move Better & Feel Better.


Welcome Voucher