How Chiropractors Treat Shin Splints

How Chiropractors Treat Shin Splints

Shin splints, or medial tibial stress syndrome, is a common condition that affects athletes and physically active individuals. It is characterized by pain along the inner edge of the shin bone (tibia) and is often caused by excessive stress on the muscles and bone tissue in the lower leg. Chiropractors, who specialize in musculoskeletal disorders, are well-equipped to diagnose and treat shin splints. This article discusses the various chiropractic techniques used to treat shin splints and how they promote healing and prevent future occurrences.


Chiropractors begin by conducting a thorough examination to determine the cause and severity of shin splints. This involves a physical examination, a review of the patient’s medical history, and an assessment of the patient’s gait and biomechanics. Imaging techniques such as X-rays or MRI scans may be used to rule out other potential causes of pain, like stress fractures.

Treatment Techniques:

Manual Therapy:

Chiropractors use manual therapy techniques to alleviate pain and promote healing. This may include joint mobilization and manipulation to restore proper joint mechanics, as well as soft tissue therapies like myofascial release or trigger point therapy. These methods help to decrease muscle tightness, reduce inflammation, and improve blood flow to the affected area.

Kinesiology Taping:

Kinesiology tape is a flexible, elastic tape that can be applied to the skin to provide support and stability to the affected muscles and joints. Chiropractors may use kinesiology tape to help reduce pain, improve circulation, and facilitate the healing process. It also provides proprioceptive feedback, which can help the patient maintain proper alignment during physical activity.

Custom Orthotics:

In some cases, shin splints may be caused or exacerbated by improper foot mechanics. Chiropractors can assess the patient’s gait and foot biomechanics and prescribe custom orthotics, which are shoe inserts designed to correct structural imbalances, provide support, and promote proper alignment. This can help to alleviate stress on the lower leg and reduce the risk of future shin splints.

Rehabilitation Exercises:

Chiropractors often prescribe specific strengthening and stretching exercises to help patients recover from shin splints. These exercises are designed to improve muscle strength, flexibility, and balance, which can help to reduce the risk of future injuries.

Lifestyle and Training Modifications:

Chiropractors also work with patients to identify and address lifestyle and training factors that may contribute to shin splints. This may involve recommending adjustments to the patient’s training regimen, footwear, or running technique, as well as discussing strategies for managing stress and optimizing recovery.

Chiropractors utilize a comprehensive approach to diagnosing and treating shin splints, employing a variety of techniques tailored to the individual patient’s needs. By addressing the root causes of shin splints and promoting proper biomechanics, chiropractic care can help to alleviate pain, facilitate healing, and reduce the risk of future injuries.