Injury: Shinsplints

Most Susceptible: Former athletes who are out of shape or novices just starting a new activity such as running, jogging, basketball or a racquet sport.

Symptoms: Sharp pain caused by an inflammation of the sheath that joins the muscle to the bone in the lower front leg.

Causes: Poor fitness, usually aggravated by inadequate footwear.

Treatment: A week or two of rest. Also, periodically ice painful areas. Take an anti-inflammatory, such as Motrin or other form of ibuprofen. Stretch the calf muscles, and do calf raises.

Another helpful exercise calls for sitting barefoot in a chair and laying a towel flat on the floor in front of you. Use your toes to squeeze the towel and pull it in toward your body.

Consult your physician if pain persists.

Prevention: Proper footwear is essential. Make sure shoes can absorb the shock produced by your exercise. Also, trainers recommend getting into shape gradually. Your lungs may be fit enough for a new workout, but it often takes awhile longer for the rest of your body to catch up.

Quote: "This is a weekend warrior syndrome," said Richard Cotton, an exercise physiologist with the American Council on Exercise in San Diego. "If you're really involved in your activity, you've worked past it."


Things to Do:

Take anti-inflammatories

Apply ice

Gently stretch and exercise

Runners typically feel pain in these areas of the lower legs.


Source: American Council on Exercise

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