There are no words that can bring more horror to a runner’s heart than ‘shin splints’ or ‘plantar fasciitis.’ Mention either and watch experienced runners stumble over sidewalk cracks, fumble when tying their shoes, or tremble when trying to set their Garmin watch; fear enveloping their entire being. It’s a terrible thing to see.
Shin splints cause pain at the front portion of the leg, near the shin bone. Pointing the toe or an increase in activity intensity can inflict pain so bad a sweatband will soak through in seconds. All athletes dread the shin splint. Often it strikes at the beginning of a new exercise routine, when people are just so excited to get out there and get active. It is the bane of many triathletes, runners, cyclists and and many other athletes.
But as bad as shin splints may be, plantar fasciitis can produce the same result. Plantar fasciitis is characterized by severe pain along on the bottom of the foot; pain like stepping on your young nephew’s LEGO blocks he left on the ground. Weak or tight foot muscles, improper foot arch or poor training are all potential causes. Treating plantar fasciitis can be as difficult as spelling it.
Which is worse? No one can say. But anyone that’s experienced either will tell you that both are terrible. Treatment can be frustrating as well. It can mean time away from your favourite activity, and lots of (let’s face it, BORING) rehab exercises.
The saying “an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure” was probably coined by someone that experienced shin splints or plantar fasciitis. Prevention is truly the best option here. Please watch the below video to see how to prevent shin splints, and notice how perfect Travel Roller’s varying density Acupressure Balls fit into the bottom of the foot! Three cheers for prevention!
p.s. please excuse my less-than-attractive foot 🙂