how to strap for shin splints

How to Strap for Shin Splints

how to strap for shin splints

Introduction

Shin splints can be a painful condition that affects many athletes and runners. It is important to take the necessary steps to alleviate the pain and promote healing. One effective method is strapping the affected area to provide support and stability. In this article, we will discuss how to properly strap for shin splints to prevent further injury and aid in recovery.

What are Shin Splints?

Shin splints, or medial tibial stress syndrome, refers to pain and inflammation in the front of the lower leg, along the shin bone (tibia). It commonly occurs in athletes who engage in activities that involve a significant amount of running or jumping, such as runners, basketball players, and dancers.

Why Strap for Shin Splints?

Strapping, also known as taping, is a technique that involves applying adhesive tape to the affected area to provide support and stability. Shin splints can be caused by excessive stress on the muscles and connective tissues in the lower leg. Strapping can help reduce this stress by providing external support to the affected area, allowing the injured tissues to heal.

Types of Strapping Techniques

There are several strapping techniques that can be used for shin splints, including the following:

1. Arch Support Technique

This technique involves placing a strip of tape from the inside of the arch to the outside of the foot, providing support to the arch and reducing stress on the shin.

2. Figure Eight Technique

The figure eight technique involves creating a figure eight shape around the lower leg and ankle, providing support to the muscles and connective tissues.

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3. Calf Support Technique

The calf support technique involves wrapping the tape around the calf muscle, providing compression and support to reduce stress on the shin.

4. Anterior Tibial Technique

This technique involves placing a strip of tape along the front of the shin, providing direct support to the affected area and reducing pain and inflammation.

Steps for Strapping for Shin Splints

Step 1: Clean and Dry the Skin

Before applying any tape, make sure the skin is clean and dry. This will ensure proper adhesion and prevent any skin irritation.

Step 2: Apply Pre-wrap (Optional)

If desired, you can use pre-wrap to protect the skin and provide a base layer for the tape. This can be especially helpful for individuals with sensitive skin.

Step 3: Start with Anchors

Begin by applying two anchor strips of tape above and below the affected area. These anchors will provide a secure base for the rest of the strapping.

Step 4: Apply the Main Tape Strips

Using the chosen strapping technique, apply the main tape strips to provide support and stability to the affected area. Be sure to apply the tape with enough tension to provide support, but not so tight that it restricts circulation.

Step 5: Finish with Anchors

End the strapping process by applying two more anchor strips above and below the main tape strips. These anchors will secure the tape in place and prevent it from coming loose during activity.

Step 6: Test and Adjust

After strapping, it is important to test the level of support and comfort. If the strapping feels too tight or uncomfortable, adjust the tension or reapply the tape as needed.

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Tips for Effective Strapping

Here are some additional tips to make your strapping more effective:

  • Consult with a healthcare professional or sports therapist for guidance on the best strapping technique for your individual needs.
  • Always ensure the skin is clean and dry before applying any tape.
  • Use high-quality adhesive tape to ensure proper adhesion and longevity of the strapping.
  • If you experience any discomfort or increased pain while strapping, remove the tape immediately and seek medical advice.
  • Reapply the tape as needed, especially if engaging in activities that cause excessive sweating or prolonged wear.

Conclusion

Proper strapping for shin splints can be a valuable technique in managing pain and promoting healing. By following the appropriate strapping techniques and tips, individuals can find relief and support for their shin splints, allowing them to continue participating in their desired activities. Remember to always consult with a healthcare professional for guidance and if symptoms persist or worsen.

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