Your shin bone (tibia) is the bone at the front of your lower leg that runs from your knee to your ankle. Shin splints is a general term used to describe any condition that causes pain down the middle, or on either side of your shin. Shin splints can develop when you put too much stress and strain on your shin bone. This happens when there is repetitive impact on your shin bone during weight-bearing sports or activities.
Stress fractures. These are an overuse injury. Shin splints usually develop in people who do repetitive activities and sports that put a lot of stress on the lower legs, such as running, dancing, aerobics and football.
Medial tibial stress syndrome. This is inflammation where the tendon attaches to the thin layer of tissue that covers the bone (periosteum).
Compartment syndrome. This happens when your muscle swells. The muscle is confined by the compartment it’s in, so doesn’t have much room to expand. When the pressure in the muscle increases it causes the symptoms of compartment syndrome.
Footwear that don’t fit well or don’t have enough cushioning and support.
Mechanical imbalance, flat feet or roll inwards, excessive pronation.
Change your running pattern and the surface that you run on; for example, going from running on a treadmill to running on the road.
Signs & Symptoms:
Tenderness, aching or sharp pain along the front of your lower half of the leg.
The pain is often worse when you do activities on weight bearing. You may feel pain along the length of your shin, or only along a small section.
The pain may build up during exercise and it will become more severe the longer you exercise.
Pain at the start of exercise which often eases as the session continues.
Pain often returns after activity and may be at its worse the next morning.
Lumps and bumps may be felt when feeling the inside of the shin bone.
Pain when the toes or foot are bent downwards.