Accessed June 30, 2016. Steps you can take to avoid getting shin splints include: Any intensive exercise program requires strengthening of all surrounding muscle groups. … Placing a Theraband around the knees will strengthen the muscles more. Repeated pounding and stress on the bones, muscles, and joints of the lower legs prevents your body from being able to naturally repair and restore itself. Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn. July 1, 2016. Warming up before exercising is also a good way to make sure your legs aren’t sore. Injuries and subsequent inflammation…. Our website services, content, and products are for informational purposes only. Periostitis results in inflammation of the periosteum. Excessive dorsiflexion will irritate and cause progressively worse shin pain. An exercise to strengthen the hip muscles is done by lying on one’s side with the feet together. Learn…. Risk factors include: Shin splints are also more likely to occur when your leg muscles and tendons are tired. The ankles and legs are common areas for swelling because of gravity’s effect on the fluids in the human body. Here’s our process. Accessed June 30, 2016. Workouts should be varied to avoid overuse and trauma to any particular muscle group. You should refrain from any intense exercise program if severe muscle pain or other physical symptoms develop. Accessed June 30, 2016. The term "shin splints" refers to pain along the shin bone (tibia) — the large bone in the front of your lower leg. Pain on the anterior (outside) part of the lower leg may be compartment syndrome: Swelling of muscles within a closed compartment which creates pressure. Your doctor may refer to the condition as medial tibial stress syndrome (MTSS). The term “shin splints” describes pain felt along the front of your lower leg, at the shin bone. This pain concentrates in the lower leg between the knee and ankle. Various activities and physical attributes can put you at risk of getting shin splints. You … running on a slanted surface or uneven terrain, participating in sports that have fast stops and starts (like soccer or downhill skiing), a dull ache in the front part of the lower leg, pain along the inner part of the lower leg, tenderness or soreness along the inner part of the lower leg, swelling in the lower leg (usually mild, if present), severe pain in your shin after a fall or accident, pain in your shins even when you’re resting, Wear elastic compression bandages. It generally resolves during periods of rest. Strengthening key muscles with these exercises will improve your running technique and help you avoid injury. In this procedure, your doctor will make small cuts in the fascia tissue surrounding your calf muscles. Many athletes get painful shin splints -- also known as tibial stress syndrome -- at one time or another. All rights reserved. Healthline Media does not provide medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. © 2005-2020 Healthline Media a Red Ventures Company. Here are four leg stretches to improve flexibility and reduce the risk of…, The telltale symptoms of sciatic nerve pain are severe pain in your back, buttocks, and legs. The symptoms of compartment syndrome include leg pain, unusual nerve sensations, and eventually muscle weakness. Mayo Clinic does not endorse companies or products. Shin splints, or medial tibial stress syndrome, occur when the muscles, tendons, and bone tissue surrounding the shinbones become inflamed. Doctors sometimes call shin splints medial tibial stress syndrome, which is a more accurate name. The excessive force causes the muscles to swell and increases the pressure against the bone, leading to pain and inflammation. During this time, you can engage in sports or activities that are less likely to cause additional harm to your legs. Eventually, however, the pain can be continuous and might progress to a stress reaction or stress fracture. If you’re an avid runner, you may be familiar with shin splints, a type of periostitis. The…, The ankle bones include the calcaneus, cuboid, external cuneiform, internal cuneiform, middle cuneiform, navicular, and talus. Shin splints are common in runners, dancers and military recruits. However, if your shin splints are causing severe pain and symptoms last for more than several months, your doctor may recommend surgery. Shin splints are caused by repetitive stress on the shinbone and the connective tissues that attach your muscles to the bone.