Shin splints is a common injury of the lower limb, especially in athletes involved in running sports. It is generally not a serious condition, but can create debilitating symptoms of pain along either the front or inner border of the shin bone. There are multiple causes of shin splints which can include the following:

  • biomechanical abnormalities such as “flat feet”
  • muscle fatigue, tightness and weakness of the lower leg and feet
  • poor choice of footwear
  • worn-out footwear
  • training errors such as over training or “too much, too soon”
  • issues with running technique
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There is no secret to the fact that running injury free is one of the keys to improving your running.  The development of foot and lower body injuries can significantly impact on your participation and thus performance in running activities.

As podiatrists we see a wide range of clients with running related injuries, from adults training to run their first marathon through to active kids playing school sports.  Most common running related injuries, such as achilles tendinopathy, shin and knee pain, tend to occur gradually over time and can almost always be prevented or minimised with the right advice.

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Pain underneath the heel, commonly results from a condition known as plantar fasciitis.  It is typically defined as a ‘self limiting’ condition, however can be particularly debilitating to those who suffer from it.  In particular clients report pain under the heel when they first put weight on their foot in the morning or go to walk after a period of rest. The pain can be so severe that they are unable to place their heel on the ground. The pain usually resolves after a short period of walking but may recur once they have been on their feet for a period of time, limiting their exercise capacity.

It is often reported that the natural history of plantar fasciitis is for the condition to persist for 6 to 18 months without treatment.  Podiatry management can help to facilitate the recovery from this condition and thereby reduce its impact on the individual’s overall health.

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