How To Make Your Shins Not Hurt When Running

Running is a fantastic sport that offers numerous health benefits, both physical and mental. However, one common issue that many runners face is shin pain. Shin pain can range from a mild discomfort to a debilitating problem that hinders your running performance. As a passionate runner myself, I have experienced my fair share of shin pain and have learned some valuable tips and tricks to prevent and alleviate it. In this article, I will share my personal experiences and insights on how to make your shins feel better when running.

Understanding Shin Pain

Before we dive into the solutions, let’s first understand why shin pain occurs. The most common cause of shin pain in runners is a condition called shin splints. Shin splints, or medial tibial stress syndrome, is characterized by pain along the inner edge of the shin bone (tibia). It is typically caused by repetitive stress on the muscles, tendons, and bone tissue surrounding the shin.

Shin splints can be caused by a variety of factors, including:

  • Overpronation or excessive inward rolling of the foot
  • Running on hard surfaces
  • Wearing worn-out or improper running shoes
  • Inadequate warm-up and stretching
  • Increasing running intensity or distance too quickly

Now that we have a basic understanding of shin pain, let’s move on to the strategies that can help prevent and manage it.

Proper Footwear and Running Form

One of the most crucial aspects of preventing shin pain is wearing the right running shoes. Invest in a pair of shoes that provide adequate cushioning and support for your feet. Consider getting a professional gait analysis to determine your running style and find shoes that are suitable for your specific needs. Additionally, pay attention to your running form. Strive for a midfoot strike rather than landing on your heels, as this can reduce the impact on your shins.

Gradual Progression and Strengthening Exercises

Another key factor in preventing shin pain is to avoid sudden increases in running intensity or distance. Gradually build up your mileage and pace to give your body time to adapt. Incorporating strength training exercises that target the muscles surrounding your shins, such as calf raises and toe curls, can also help improve the stability and support of your lower legs.

Warm-Up and Stretching

Before each run, it is essential to warm up properly and stretch your muscles. A dynamic warm-up, including exercises like leg swings and lunges, can increase blood flow and loosen up your muscles. Follow it up with targeted stretches for your calves, shins, and ankles. Stretching regularly, especially after your runs, can contribute to reducing muscle tightness and preventing shin pain.

Cross-Training and Rest

Engaging in cross-training activities, such as swimming or cycling, can help prevent overuse injuries, including shin splints. Cross-training allows you to give your shins a break from the repetitive impact of running while still maintaining your fitness. Additionally, make sure to listen to your body and allow for proper rest and recovery. Giving yourself adequate rest days can prevent overuse injuries and give your shins the time they need to heal and strengthen.


Shin pain can be a frustrating setback for runners, but with the right strategies and precautions, you can minimize its occurrence and severity. Remember to wear proper footwear, focus on your running form, progress gradually, incorporate strength training, warm-up and stretch adequately, and give yourself sufficient rest. By following these tips and maintaining a balanced approach to running, you can enjoy the sport without the nagging discomfort of shin pain.