No, you may not need new running shoes is you have shin splints – and today I will tell you why, as well as other things you need to consider. Of course, unsuitable running shoes can cause shin splints if they lack support and comfort, but there are other factors to consider which we will look at today.
Shin splints, in particular, is caused when the muscles or tendons supporting the shins become overworked and inflamed. This then causes extensive pain in the lower leg, which intensifies during workouts and runs.
Common Causes of Shin Splints.
Yes, you do need to make sure you have the right running shoes for you, but let’s take a look at some other factors you need to consider when running.
- • Running on a hard surface puts extra pressure on your lower leg muscles. Such running leads to increased muscle tension, in turn causing problems like shin splints. The body needs time to adjust to the extra pressure. So, I would recommend gradual changes only.
- • A monotonous running routine without any strength training can also lead to shin splints. Such a practice pressurizes the same muscles, causing stress fractures. So, try to add other exercises into your weeks, such as weights, circuits, or a bit of cross-country running, to build more leg strength.
- • Sudden increases in distance and pace can contribute towards shin splints too. It is so because the body requires time to adapt to the enhanced activity. So, I would recommend only slight increases over time.
What should I look for in a pair of running shoes?
If you decide you do need new shoes, then here are a few quick and essential characteristics you should expect from the best running shoes for shin splints. You will know when you have the right running shoes because they will give you the adequate support and shock absorption, and your lower legs won’t feel as tense afterwards.
The foot muscles are the most engaging set of muscles during running. A lightweight pair can reduce pressure, which helps ease the muscles and prevent such foot problems. Some runners don’t trust lighter shoes, assuming they won’t be as durable or last as long. However, that’s not the case as manufacturers use technology and specific materials that improve durability, so you get the best of both worlds.
Stability and Balance.
Having well-balanced shoes can help in efficient weight distribution, reducing further stress and pressure. Unstable shoes can lead to wrong foot landing, which is an issue as it will increase tension. Along with balance, if you have flat feet, you should look for a raised middle platform for better support. This platform might make them ill-balanced but will add stability.
Support is another critical factor in running shoes. For one, make sure that the outsole is shock-absorbent, as that will prevent stress-buildup. The pair should also feature a deep lug pattern for better support and protection.
I would recommend a raised middle platform for people with flat feet when it comes to the insoles. But, those with wide feet will need an outrigger, and you should also consider the midsole for support.
A padded toe and collar will also enhance the support, reducing the risk of injury. Furthermore, a raised heel will better support the heel and ankle muscles. This support will help prevent problems like plantar fasciitis.
Finally, I would recommend shoes with heel cup technology for enhanced support and comfort.
The shoes must have all these characteristics to diminish the chances of injury. For help, I am attaching an article with an in-depth guide to getting the best running shoes for shin splints.
What’s the best way to heal shin splints?
Before we end, I want to share some tips from another article I wrote on the fastest way to heal shin splints. Buying the right shoes is one thing, but you have to rest and make sure you’re giving your injury the care and attention it needs.
- • Rest is the most crucial factor for healing your shin tissues. Rest will allow the healing cells to activate quicker and speed up the recovery.
- • Icing can prevent further inflammation in the shins and reduce swelling. Try two to three sessions a day of about fifteen minutes each.
- • Compression sleeves can help limit foot movement. As a result, this will promote a natural posture and reduce muscle pressure. As a result, this will quicken the recovery.
- • Indulge in the calf stretches three times a day, five stretches at a time. This exercise will catalyze the healing process by activating the healing cells.