Cardio with shin splints: Try an elliptical machine

August 26, 2013

Medial tibial stress syndrome, also known as shin splints, refers to pain felt down the front of your lower legs. Shin splints are inflammation in the front part of the tibia caused by strenuous activity, stop-start actions or too much running on hard surfaces.

When shin splints occur, pain is usually felt during physical activity will recur during strenuous events like exercise or sports.

Pain felt from shin splints comes in the form of a dull aches in the front part of the leg on either side of the shinbone or in the muscle itself. Signs of shin splints include:

  • Pain in the lower leg
  • Tenderness on the inner part of the lower leg
  • A numb or weak feeling in feet
  • Mild swelling

If you find yourself suffering from shin splints, the first thing you should do is rest. Give your body a little time to recuperate and heal. Pushing through the pain is never a good idea and can lead to further injuries.

Aerobic exercise with shin splints: Try the elliptical
After a rest period, you don’t have to abandon your cardio workouts. Using a home gym equipment like an elliptical machine allows you to continue aerobic exercise without excessive pressure placed on your shins.

Make sure to warm up before jumping into a full cardio workout to prepare the body and avoid exacerbating the injury. Take five to 10 minutes to prepare your body and mind for the exercise ahead.

Also make sure you are wearing proper shoes. Ill-fitting shoes can cause injuries themselves. It’s a good idea to always replace worn out shoes with new ones. Also, know your foot type as well as how you walk in order to choose the best footwear option.

Ellipticals like the True M50 Home Elliptical Trainer are low-impact, which is a great for injury recovery and joints. Using an elliptical will allow you an effective cardio workout that will getting you sweating and burning calories without putting too much stress on your shins and other joints.

After you finish, make sure to stretch and cool down. Specifically, stretch out the muscles of your lower legs. Alternate pointing and flexing your feet to stretch the front and back of the calves. It might also be a good idea to apply ice to your shins after working out to reduce and swelling and heat to reduce inflammation.