As you may remember from our past posts, Kinesiology Tape has a wide spectrum of use in the recovery of muscle-skeletal injuries. In this post specifically, we’re going to be talking about the process of healing Shin Splits with Target Tape.

Shin splints are the commonly given name to the pain at the front of the lower leg and it’s usually an exercise-related problem. The Mayo Clinic defines the shin splints as the “pain along the shin bone (tibia) — the large bone in the front of your lower leg.” In medical terms this condition is known as the medial tibia stress syndrome, shin splints often occur in athletes who have recently intensified or changed their training routines. The muscles, tendons and bone tissue become overworked by the increased activity.

The symptoms of this condition begin with a lower leg pain that can be described sharp and razor, follow by mild swelling or lumps in the area. The pain starts during or after exercise, becoming worst later.

The causes

In words of Runners world: too much, too soon. It’s most common on people who first start running/jogging or, in other words, among the less experienced athletes. Once the causes are known and the situation is corrected the pain should calm down, and the lead to prevention is set!  To avoid shin splints during a practice of any sports activity, it is vital to be aware of your running mechanism, the relation between the running surface – intensity – time (instead of changing drastically the running surface, or increasing mileage and time of training every single week, you might consider a stress/adaptation cycle), and last but not least it is very important to wear the appropriate footwear, those that will give you cushioning, stability and motion control.

The treatment

In terms of treatment options, the problem is not typically solved by only using one of the methods. The main goal is to reduce pain and inflammation. In order to relieve the symptoms, the recommended treatments are rest, ice, taping, insoles & shoes, and in some cases medication.

Kinesiology Taping (KT) works particularly well because it provides support to the muscles of the lower leg, allowing these to rest and heal. At the same time that brings supports to the muscles, KT can be helpful managing pain and avoiding injuries at the same time.

As Running Physio mentioned in their article “Kinesio Tape for ‘Shin Splints’?”, KT is the only therapy for shin splints that has proven to be effective. One of the most respected clinical studies is:

“Griebert et al. (2014) studied loading during walking in 20 healthy participants and 20 with a history of Medial Tibial Stress Syndrome (MTSS). They reported a higher loading rate on the medial midfoot in those with MTSS and found this was corrected by the application of Kinesio Tape. The tape was kept in place and the reduction in loading rate remained when re-tested 24 hours later. Many critics of taping suggest its effects are short lived but the results of this study suggested it lasted at least 24 hours”

According to the Shin Splint Clinic  some recommendations for the application of KT on shin splint injuries are:

  • Basic Shin Taping Position the foot at a 45-degree angle. Put strips of tape around the lower leg area beginning near the ankle. First go around the outside of the leg and finish it by gently pulling crosswise the inside of the leg. The tape must be slightly rigid, but not too tight.
  • Anterior / Medial Taping Starting from the front of the ankle, wrap tape starting from the outside around the back of the ankle and up to the inner calf and shin at a 45° angle. Repeat for a total of 3 or 4 time and close at both top and bottom.
  • Lateral Taping Begin at the front area of the ankle and wrap the tape from the inside around the back of the ankle and up the outer calf and shin area at a 45° angle. Repeat for a total 4 repetitions and close at both top and bottom.

The recommendations

The Sports Injury Clinic offers an assessment in order to identify symptoms and the right moment to reach a doctor.

Our recommendation? If you suspect you are suffering from this condition, and you haven’t improved with the use of KT, please remember that one potential cause of shin pain is a stress fracture, do not hesitate in seek medical assessment and advice!

All that said, do you think we should use Kinesiology Tape for MTSS? With everything we’ve read (and written), we can say that in general the products of our brand: Target Tape, are the perfect therapy to reduce pain and inflammation… Feel welcome to leave a feedback in the comments section or on any of our Social Media Channels or e-mail us today. We would be very pleased to hear from you!

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