Can roller skating cause shin splints?
Roller skating is fun, and there’s no doubting it. You’ll agree with me if you’ve been skating for a while. Roller skating triggers dopamine release, making you feel good when skating.
This is great for stress management. Besides that, roller skating has tons of physical and social benefits. You can make new roller skating buddies every time you visit the rink.
While roller skating has tons of benefits, it can also be a risky and dangerous hobby. Shin splints is one of the roller skating risks. It ruins roller skating fun since it’s hard to skate while in pain.
I cover details about shin pains when roller skating in the rest of this guide. You don’t want to miss out. So, I urge you to stick around till the end. Let’s get to it!
Can Roller Skating Cause Shin Splints?
First things first! Can roller skating cause shin splints? Absolutely yes. Roller skating can cause shin splints when your shin muscles are weak, you over skate, you use the wrong roller skating technique, you roller skate on rough surfaces, you use ill-fitting roller skates, you have an existing bone disease, or you do intensive running before roller skating.
What is Shin Splint?
What is a shin splint? Shin splint is pain along the tibia bone. The tibia is the large bone located at the bottom of the shins.
This condition is prevalent in athletes, military recruits, and dancers. It’s caused by too much pressure on the shin muscles, tendons, and bone tissue.
Tenderness, mild swelling, soreness, or shinbone pain are the primary symptoms of a shin splint. You want to seek medical attention promptly or take a rest when you notice these symptoms.
You’re at more risk of developing shin splints if you run, increase workout duration, run on rough surfaces, or have flat feet.
How Roller Skating Causes Shin Splint
Athletes often experience shin splints. But this doesn’t mean roller skaters are any safer, especially those that over skate or indulge in rigorous aggressive skating.
Below are the ways roller skating can cause shin splint!
1. Have Weak Shin Muscles
A Shin splint is primarily caused by excessive pressure on the shin muscles, tendons, and bone tissue. The most affected people often have weak shin muscles.
Roller skating can be rigorous as it works all body muscles for propulsion. You need stronger muscles to move seamlessly, which can be daunting when you’re still new to skating.
Most of the force you require for the push and glide motion should come from your legs, hips, and glutes. This is why these muscles need to be stronger.
Newbie roller skaters don’t have this advantage. Roller skating for the first time will exert so much pressure on the leg muscles, making the shins to hurt.
The good news is that you only need to skate a bit longer to strengthen your shin muscles. They won’t hurt anymore after four to eight weeks of learning to roller skate.
2. You Roller Skate More than Necessary
But wait! Over skating isn’t cool because it does more harm than good, especially when you’re still new. Remember shin splint is caused by too much pressure on the shin muscles.
Over skating does precisely that, increasing the chances of suffering a shin splint. The best way to go about it is to minimize how long you roller skate.
Thirty minutes to an hour should be sufficient for complete beginners. Overdoing it doesn’t mean having fun, and it doesn’t help when you suffer a shin splint after a roller skating session.
3. You Use the Wrong Skating Technique
What is the wrong skating technique? You’re probably asking. The wrong skating technique is not bending properly.
Using the wrong technique concentrates your body weight on your back and the shin muscles. This could be a possible explanation for lower back pain when skating if you’ve experienced it.
The trick is to use the correct skating posture. You should bend your back and knees slightly since it helps transfer the weight from your back and shins to your toe balls.
4. Roller Skating on Rough Surfaces
There are plenty of surfaces for roller skating, such as plastic, concrete, asphalt, wood, and rubber. These surfaces are great since they’re smooth, sturdy, and safe to skate on.
Rough surfaces, on the contrary, aren’t a good fit for roller skating, especially for newbies with underdeveloped shin muscles.
These surfaces aren’t smooth and cause vibration because of unevenness. Sadly, these vibrations aren’t good for the shins, feet, and legs.
Overly roller skating on rough surfaces will no doubt cause a shin splint. As your roller skates vibrate on your feet, the vibration force and energy are absorbed into the shin muscles and bones.
5. Wearing Ill-fitting Roller Skates
Ill-fitting roller skates are either too tight or too loose. Shin splint is mainly associated with too-tight roller skates. How does that work? You’re probably asking.
Too tight roller skates exert pressure on the lower shin where the roller skate tongue rests. The severity depends on how strong your shin muscles are and how tight you’ve laced.
The trick is to wear snuggly fitting roller skates since they’re breathable and more comfortable. This helps prevent shin splint completely when other factors are constant.
6. Existing Bone Disease
Roller skaters with bone diseases such as osteoporosis are highly likely to suffer from shin splints. This bone disease weakens bones and makes them susceptible to sudden fractures. It worsens when you exert more pressure on the shins when roller skating.
7. Failing to Stretch Enough
Stretching before and after roller skating is crucial for all forms of exercise, and roller skating isn’t exempted. Stretching relaxes the muscles and prevents muscle soreness and cramps.
Your shin muscles will be rigid if you don’t stretch properly before and after every roller skating session. This increases the chances of suffering from a shin splint when roller skating.
8. Running After and Before Roller Skating
Running is one of the primary causes of a shin splint. You’re at higher risk of suffering a shin splint if you run after and before roller skating. The severity depends on how vigorous you run.
How to Treat Roller Skating Shin Splint
The best way to deal with a shin splint is to prevent it. But even if you’re already in pain, a shin splint shouldn’t stress you that much.
It’s advisable to seek medical attention, especially when you have an existing bone disease. This way, you’ll get prompt medical assistance to stop the pain.
Below is a quick rundown of other preventive measures!
- Check on the roller skating tricks like jumps that can trigger shin splints.
- Avoid overskating.
- Wear appropriately fitting roller skates.
- Use Arch support.
- Use shock-absorbing insoles.
- Minimize highly intensive exercises like running.
- Roller skate more to strengthen the weak shin muscles.
Can Roller Skating Cause Shin Splint? Wrapping Up
Can roller skating cause shin splints? Absolutely yes, and there’s no doubting it. Roller skating is fun and exciting. But, if the pain comes in the way, it ruins the fun.
The good news is that you don’t have to sweat it. This comprehensive guide is what you need to solve this problem once and for all.
More importantly, seek medical intervention, especially when you suspect a bone disease. That’s it. I hope you found this helpful. Happy roller skating!