Best shoes for shin splints?

Posted this to 'Gear' without response, let's see if anyone here can help:-
I get shin splints quite easily, no matter what surfaces I run on. Has anyone had a similar problem and magically solved it simply with a new pair of shoes, if so what are they?


  • I had the same problem but I also over pronate. My shins are now as good as they will ever be while running and I only run 5k twice a week and if I can be bothered 10k at the weekend. The shoes with the best cushioning are probably Mizuno wave creation, in my opinion they were excellent but still gave me shin pain!! I then discovered motion control shoes and that made a BIG difference with orthotics.
    The most important thing is to identify why you get shin splints and take it from there.
    Good luck
  • You should really go to a specialist running shop and get your gait analysed. There are many reasons for and types of shin splints, so a shoe that helps one person could make another person worse. The two main causes are impact and over-pronation, one would be helped bu cushioning shoes, the other by motion control.

    Take your current running shoes, or even normal shoes that you have worn for quite a while with you, as the wear pattern will help them work out what type of runner you are. Many of these shops have video gait analysis, so they can look at how you run in detail. Others will watch you run across the shop/up the street, and can check your motion that way.
  • Thanks, but I've had my gait checked and they said there's nothing obviously wrong. Had splints for years now, given up any hope of a proper cure.
  • Hi Mike, I notice this post was posted a while ago now. Just curious if you ever found the magic cure that you were after? I have a very similar problem in that I get shin splints very easily. I can have a months off running and then go for a short 2-3km run and the shin splints fire up immediately. Trying to train for a marathon is impossible as the problem just amplifies as the mileage increases. I've changed shoes several times and have had orthotics before to correct a mild pronation problem but none of these have helped. Have also seen all sorts of sports injury specialists also to no avail. Would be good to hear if you have made any progress with this.
  • Hi Mike,
    I've tried orthotics and varoius shoe types all without real success over the last 4 years, even thought of giving up at several points. I've had various physio treatments and had my orthotics adjusted 3 times. I have no complaints at all about the professional treatment I have received, but it did not work! However, I bought some Asics Gel Foundation at a good price about 3 months ago and thought I'd try without orthotics. Ususally my shin splints kick off very quickly but they seem to have dissappeared completely with these Asics!!! I'm sure these shoes have solved my problems. Good luck!
  • Dave928Dave928 ✭✭✭
    Hi, just revisiting some old threads. I never did find the magic cure, practically gave up serious training. However I might try these Asics, one last throw of the dice...
  • Let us know how you get on Mike!
  • Hi Mike,
    Since last posting to this thread I've had an interesting and perhaps extreme time finding a solution to my shin splint problems. Not sure if this will help but if I bore you with my story perhaps some or all of it may be relevant to you and may help you.

    I've had shin splints for over 10 years since when I switched from swimming to running and now triathlon. My problem occurs every single run I do, I could take a year off training and then do a short 5km run and would have shin splints immediately and then have to rest at least 2 weeks waiting for them to heal before resuming training. I've spent over 10 years trying virtually everything to find a cure. I've tried orthotics, many kinds of shoes mainly different Asics as they tend to be most comfortable for me and fit my feet best, have tried about a years worth of physio sorting out muscle imbalances and trying to get to the bottom of the problem, have had biomechanical analysis that showed very mild pronation (not considered the cause of such extreme shin splints), I tried changing from heel-toe running to forefoot running to totally negate pronation and to be honest that made the problem worse even though I now prefer running like this (much lighter on the feet). So I've tried it all, I then managed to get a private referal to a British Ahtletics sports doctor who also couldnt get to the bottom of it, but he referred me to a paedatric surgeon who has spent most of his career researching shin splint problems in athletes. This is where it got interesting for me. I was instantly diagnosed with medial tibial stress syndrome which is a bit of a catch all phrase for a few varieties of shin splints (yes there is more than one cause). Once you have this reoccuring problem its not going to go away, you can try all sorts of shoes, orthotics etc but nothing will solve the problem. I've since had surgery unfortunately twice (just recovering from surgery 2). I had a compartment release and periostium lift the first time in both legs. This solved the shin splints in the right leg, sadly I had a complication after surgery in the left leg and that delayed recovery and surgery basically failed for that reason, hence I've had a compartment release in the left leg again and am presently crossing my fingers that it works. Basically my problem or at least one of my problems is that I had compartment syndrome. If you are not aware your calf is made of 4 muscle compartments each of which are bound by a thick lining called the fascia. One of the compartments must link to the inside of the shin in the bottom 3rd of the leg (where I get my shin pain). Each time I was foot striking there was too much pressure in that particular compartment and basically the muscle was trying to rip itself off my shin, hence no shoe would fix that. As I say my right leg has been good for the first time in 10 years, I've run on hard asphalt surfaces for distances up to 10km (have been held back by the left leg shin splints) and touch wood for the past 12-18 months all has been good. I appreciate this is quite extreme and in some ways I hope you don't have what I had. But I hope some of my story does at least help you. If you do look up compartment syndrome on the net the normal symptoms are nothing like shin splints, but it definately can be a cause of shin splints its just not documented very well yet. There is a test for compartment syndrome, a rather gross one involving needles being stuck in your leg which are then linked to a computer which monitors the muscle pressure while you have to run on the spot. Sounds horrid but actually wasn't really painful.

    If you need to know any more or if you are interested to know the details of the specialists I saw please let me know.

    Good luck!
  • I suffered shin splints for ages and eventually saw a pose coach and changed my running style from heel strike to ball of foot. I also got rid of all cushioned shoes and changed to minimal shoes as thin a sole as possible. The feedback from the ground you get allows you to run lighter and therefore reduce the impact, etc. I am hoping to be able to run barefoot sometime soon. There is much research done on this, google it, you might be surprised.
  • Yeah, don't bother looking at your running shoes per sey for a solution to shin splints. It's all down to HOW you run. Like Mellymarcos eluded to -read up on Chi Running and Pose running. You need to change the way you run.
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