Yoga For Shin Splints - Aura Wellness Center

Yoga For Shin Splints

about Yoga For Shin SplintsBy Kimaya Singh, Gopi Rao, and Faye Martins

Does yoga for shin splints work? Are you tired of feeling a sharp pain in your shins every time you exercise? Shin splints can hinder any workout routine, but don’t let them stop you from achieving your fitness goals. Yoga may be your solution if you’re looking for an effective and natural way to alleviate shin splint discomfort. Let’s explore shin splints, their causes and symptoms, and, most importantly, how certain yoga poses can help prevent and manage shin splint pain.


What are Shin Splints?

Shin splints are a common injury that affects the lower leg and can be caused by various activities such as running, jumping, or walking. They are also known as medial tibial stress syndrome and occur when excessive force is on the shinbone and connective tissues surrounding it.

The condition typically develops gradually with mild pain initially, but if left untreated can become severe enough to limit physical activity. Shin splints can affect both athletes and non-athletes alike, although they are more prevalent in those who engage in high-impact sports.

The most common cause of shin splints is overuse or repetitive stress on the lower leg muscles, tendons, and bones. This could be due to sudden changes in activity level without proper conditioning or using improper footwear during exercise.

Other factors contributing to developing shin splints include flat feet or high arches, muscle imbalances, poor running technique, inadequate stretching before exercise, or not allowing adequate rest between workouts.

Causes of Shin Splints

Shin splints are a common injury among runners and athletes, resulting in pain in the lower leg. While the exact cause of shin splints is not fully understood, several factors contribute to their development.

One of the primary causes of shin splints is overuse or repetitive stress on the muscles and bones in the lower leg. This can occur from running, jumping, or any activity constantly impacting the legs.

Another contributing factor to shin splints is improper footwear. Shoes that lack proper support or cushioning can increase pressure on specific areas of the foot and lead to discomfort in the shins.

In addition, individuals with flat feet or high arches may be more prone to developing shin splints due to their foot structure affecting how weight is distributed throughout their legs while exercising.

Other potential causes include muscle imbalances, poor form during exercise, and even nutritional deficiencies such as low vitamin D or calcium levels.

Understanding these causes can help individuals take preventative measures to avoid developing shin splints.


Symptoms of Shin Splints

Shin splints are a painful condition that can affect anyone, from professional athletes to casual runners. The symptoms of shin splints can vary depending on the severity of the situation.

The most common symptom is pain along the front or inside edges of the lower leg. This pain may be dull, achy, or sharp and stabbing. It usually worsens during physical activity and improves with rest.

In some cases, there may also be swelling around the affected area. This swelling may feel warm to the touch and cause discomfort when walking or standing for extended periods.

Another symptom of shin splints is tenderness when pressing on specific points along the affected area. These tender spots are often called “trigger points” and can help diagnose shin splints through physical examination.

If left untreated, shin splints can lead to more severe conditions, such as stress fractures. Therefore it’s essential to recognize these symptoms early on to seek proper treatment and prevent further damage.

Recognizing these symptoms early on is crucial in treating shin splints effectively. Whether you’re an athlete or just starting with exercise, being mindful of discomfort in your lower legs can help you address this issue before it becomes a bigger problem.

Yoga Poses for Shin Splints

Yoga poses can effectively stretch and strengthen the muscles in your lower legs, which can help alleviate shin splints. Here are some yoga poses that you may find helpful:

1) Downward Facing Dog: This pose stretches the calves and hamstrings, which can help relieve tension on the shins.

2) Warrior II: This pose strengthens the quadriceps, which take pressure off your shins during exercise.

3) Tree Pose: This balancing posture targets all of the muscles in your lower leg – from your toes to your calf – while also building stability.

4) Pigeon Pose: Tight hips can contribute to shin splint pain. The pigeon pose is a great way to stretch out these muscles.

5) Seated Forward Fold: This restorative pose stretches the hamstrings and calves, helping reduce muscle tension throughout the leg.

By incorporating these poses into your yoga practice or stretching routine, you may be able to prevent or alleviate shin splint pain. Always listen to your body and modify it as needed.


Prevention of Shin Splints

Preventing shin splints is essential for anyone who engages in physical activities regularly. Here are some practical tips you can follow to avoid the development of shin splints.

Ensure proper warm-up and cool-down before and after any exercise or sports activity. Warming up helps increase blood flow and flexibility, while cooling down gradually reduces muscle strain.

Avoid sudden increases in the intensity or duration of your workouts. Gradual progression gives enough time for your body to adapt without causing injuries like shin splints.

Choose proper footwear with good shock absorption features to minimize the impact on your feet while walking, running, or jumping.

Additionally, cross-train by engaging in different exercises such as swimming or cycling to give rest periods for the muscles used during high-impact activities like running.

Listen to your body and take adequate rest when necessary. Resting allows recovery time for the muscles that may have undergone stress during physical activities.

By following these simple measures consistently over time, you can reduce the risk of developing painful shin splints and keep pursuing a healthy lifestyle without interruptions!

The Running Connection

Why do so many runners practice yoga?  There are many reasons, but let’s discuss preventing shin splints or dealing with a pre-existing condition. If someone runs regularly, it is more than likely that they will encounter shin splints at some point in time. These occur with repeated trauma to connective tissues, and running is a sport with repeated high-impact contact.

When a runner pushes too far and too hard, or someone begins running for long distances without any gradual conditioning or build-up, this puts an overload of stress on the muscles of the calf. Without attention, these injuries can cause more severe problems, such as stress fractures and complete breaking of the bones.


Trauma-Related Injury

There is no simple cure for shin splints, unfortunately. Like many other trauma-related injuries, the critical healing component is to avoid using those muscles as much as possible. For runners who develop these, this may mean taking an extended break from running until the pain is completely gone.

Otherwise, more damage can occur. Pain medication and muscle relaxers may be prescribed, though they are not ideal. Many people with this condition try yoga and meditation before taking the drug therapy route, as yoga can help ease the pain associated with shin splints and strengthen the calf muscles to prevent future occurrences.

Gentle and Safe Recovery

The most important thing to remember when performing yoga for the benefit of shin splints is that practicing it wrong can have detrimental effects. Weight-bearing poses can potentially lead to strengthening the muscles, but choosing these poses before the muscles have healed enough can have the opposite result.

Leg stretching and leg strengthening poses are ideal. Seated or laying positions are better for the beginning of the therapy, while standing postures can be practiced after the injury has healed somewhat. It is vital to allow the body to heal before putting any extra stress or tension on it.


Gradual Benefits

Muscles are strengthened and made healthier through the improvement in circulation and oxygen transport that yoga causes. There is an increase in flexibility and elasticity of the muscles, which relieves the pain that shin splints cause and prevents shin splints from occurring in the future.

Regular practice of yoga, when running is resumed, can continue to maintain this improved flexibility, which will promote muscle health while running. Yoga and meditation bring relaxation to tense muscles, and running can be an excellent cardiac exercise to combine with these alternative exercises to promote the health of the body and mind.


To wrap it up, shin splints can be a real pain for those who suffer from them. Luckily, yoga offers an effective and natural way to alleviate the symptoms of this common injury. Incorporating some of the poses mentioned above into your regular yoga practice can help you build strength in your lower legs while increasing flexibility and reducing inflammation.

It’s important to remember that prevention is always better than cure for injuries like shin splints. By taking steps such as wearing proper footwear, gradually increasing exercise intensity, and incorporating rest days into your routine, you can reduce the likelihood of developing shin splints in the first place.

So if you’re dealing with shin splints or looking for ways to prevent them, try these yoga poses and see how they work. Your shins will thank you.


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0 thoughts on “Yoga For Shin Splints”

  1. I wish to thank you for this very good read!! I definitely loved each little little bit of it. I have bookmarked your web site to check out the most recent stuff you post.

  2. Yoga can help ease the pain associated with shin splints and strengthen the muscles of the calf to prevent future occurrences. Thanks for posting this helpful article.

  3. Yoga increase flexibility and elasticity of the muscles, which not only relieves the pain that shin splints cause, but also prevents shin splints from occurring in the future. Its really very valuable post for runners, Thanks

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