Shin Splint Treatments & Stretches
When an individual develops shin splints, the main course of treatment is rest. This is because more activity normally causes the inflammation to worsen and the area doesn't get a chance to heal. Keep the leg elevated and try not to do any strenuous activity that puts stress on the shins. If fitness needs to be maintained, a good exercise that won't harm the shin is swimming. It puts no weight on the leg and adds no stress.
Medication helps to eliminate pain and reduces swelling in the legs. Putting ice on the shin will help with the pain and swelling and should be done as long as the pain is severe. After the initial stages of pain, heat is used to increase blood flow and aid in healing. A support strap around the leg keeps the muscles from straining too much during normal activity and reduces pain.
Once initial pain is gone, stretching the muscles can help keep the problem from reoccurring. Standing toward a wall, with the knee slightly bent, slowly straighten the leg, keeping that foot flat on the ground. Hold it for a few seconds and then bend the knee again. Repeat with other leg. A similar stretch is done facing the wall, with the leg stretched out behind you and both hands against the wall. Lean into the wall as if doing a pushup. Remember in both stretches to keep the foot flat to the ground. Maintaining a stretching routine before and after activity can help prevent future problems with shin splints.