To accompany the excellent articles written by Josh Orabone, M.D., M.P.H. about “What Causes Shin Splints” and “How to Treat Them”, it is only appropriate to give you a workout to help prevent this aggravation. As mentioned in the articles, working out the muscles in your lower legs will help prevent this issue. Remember that you should properly treat your painful shins before beginning exercises or you may reaggravate your injury. Try these exercises to prevent shin splints.
1. Heel Stairs. A simple, yet effective exercise for shin splints. Use stairs to strengthen the muscles around your shins (anterior tibialis msucle). Hold onto at least one rail. Walk up the stairs on your heels without letting your toes touch the step. Keep your toes as high as possible in the air as you can. Once you reach the top, walk back down the stairs in the same manner. Start with 5 steps up and 15 steps down for 2 sets. Work your way up to walking more steps as your muscles strengthen.
2. Heel Walls. Heel Walls is another simple, yet effective exercises for shin splints. Stand with your back against a wall. Stand with your feet no more than 6 inches away from the wall. Rock your toes off the ground as high as you can. Hold for 2 seconds. Return to the floor, but do not let your toes touch the ground. Start with 2 sets of 10 up and down repetitions.
3. Heel Walks. The final exercise to incorporate into your regimen is the Heel Walk. For this exercise, you simply will walk on your heels for about 20 yards, or 60 feet. Start with 2 sets of 20 yard walks and increase your distance as your endurance improves. You may also perform Heel Walks in place if you cannot go outside. 20 yards equals about 26 steps in place. Again, do not overdo your exercises.
Perform these exercises three times per week to keep those shin splints in check…