Can Cycling Cause Shin Splints, CanOrCannot.Com – Cycling has always been considered as one of the eco-friendly and low impact sports, but can cycling cause shin splints?
Usually, you can experience shin splints when you are running or doing some vigorous activities which affect your legs.
Unfortunately, doing low impact activities can also cause this pain.
Many sources have claimed that if you suffer from shin splints, you need to rest your legs. To be more specific, you must rest your lower legs.
That is completely true. However, some of them also suggest you do low impact sports such as swimming and cycling.
Unfortunately, while cycling may help in some cases, it can worsen the shin pain. Actually, the activity is also able to cause shin splints.
Can Cycling Cause Shin Splints – How Can?
Although shin splints are quite common, especially among athletes, no one would deny that the overuse injuries are extremely painful which often can be unbearable.
The most annoying part of the injuries is that the pain would shoot up every time to take a step.
Being also called as tibial stress or tibialis anterior syndrome, shin splints are generally caused by routine high-impact sports or activities.
For example, running and jumping often cause the pain. Besides runners, long jumpers, aerobic dancers, and soldiers are prone to shin splints.
If you have ever experienced shin splints when you were running, you know that the slight pain is felt at the beginning of the exercise.
The pain gradually increases more and more each day as the routine activity continues. The pain also worsens.
If you leave it as it is without any treatment, the shin splints would progress and the pain would become more focused on a specific point.
Do not push yourself through the pain because the tibia would suffer from a full-blown stress fracture.
The cause of the injuries is the poor form while cycling. The correct form ensures that you would land on your mid-foot while pedaling.
The poor form, however, would generally bring the toes up towards the shins as a result of landing on your heel.
It creates debilitating pain because the incorrect move is done in each stride.
The poor cycling form is usually caused by improper bike fitting.
Such bad bike setup makes you drop your heels on the pedal strokes’ downward parts. Hence, the move pushes the toes upwards.
Runners which do not keep their good running form also experience the same flexion which is the cause of shin splints.
Thus, you need to tweak your bike setup to make it comfortable for you.
Besides, you must be disciplined in keeping your ankles and feet at the pedal strokes’ all surfaces in the same position while cycling.
Can Cycling Cause Shin Splints – The Injury Development
Usually, shin splints’ severity varies from mild to unbearable.
Overusing your shin bones, muscles, and tendons will develop the pain, especially if you are cycling vigorously without taking sufficient breaks.
Keeping your bad bike fitting will also make the pain worsens. These bad setups are improper saddle height or positions and too long bike’s crank.
Riding your bicycle in high gears too often can also cause and worsen the injury. Furthermore, several medical conditions are also able to trigger the shin pain from cycling.
For example, if you have suffered from anterior compartment syndrome which is better known as a stress fracture, you will tend to experience shin splints.
The syndrome itself is the condition in which your muscle swells inside the sheath which protects it.
You know that the shin splints have become a serious injury when the pain you feel is unbearable.
Such injury is able to last for more than a few week. It also does not get better even though you have treated it with home remedies.
On top of that, the serious shin splints would not dissipate after you take a rest and stop doing your routine workouts for a while.
You must look for medical attention at once if such conditions happen.
More importantly, you must call your doctor if the shin splints happen after you fall off your bike and are accompanied by swelling and/or heat.
The reason is that such kind of conditions could lead to an even more fatal medical condition such as infection.
These conditions can be the symptoms of stress fracture or anterior compartment syndrome as well.
You have known that this fatal syndrome triggers the shin splints. It means the risk of you experience other shin splints in the future will be bigger.
Can Cycling Cause Shin Splints – Treatments and Preventing Tips
You should take some days out of cycling. The time may range from a couple of days to about four weeks depending on the severity of the injury you suffer.
Although some people might suggest that cycling helps the healing process, if you experience quite fatal symptoms it will only worsen your legs’ condition.
If the injury is mild, you can heal it by constricting your blood vessels. It will reduce the swelling and pain.
In order to do this, you just need to hold a bag of frozen vegetables or a bag of ice pack on your injured shins for around 20 minutes.
After that, spend the next five minutes to massage your shins with a circular pattern.
Massaging the shins with an ice cube using the same motion will be better for the healing process.
To ease the pain, you can also consume a pain reliever like ibuprofen.
If you think that you suffer from a fracture, contact a doctor immediately. You may need to undergo a surgery.
You may also want to discuss when you can resume your training with your athletic trainer.
Consult both your doctor and the trainer if you wish to develop a cross-training exercise until your shins have healed completely.
To avoid shin splints, besides fitting your bike properly, you can also do some stretching out. It will warm your shins up and make them stronger.
Choose cycling shoes which provide good cushioning and support.
Wearing orthotics or inserts to keep your feet position during the workout is also a good idea.
Interesting Ask you may like:
Can Cycling Cause Shin Splints – Conclusion
Unfortunately, although many people believe that cycling can help those who suffer from shin splints, it can also worsen and even be the cause of the injury.
Knowledge about the causes and treatments is very necessary to avoid such fatal risk.
Thus, if others ask you, “Can cycling cause shin splints?”, you can give a proper explanation.