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Best Running Shoes for Shin Splints

Updated on August 29, 2012
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Shin Splints: A Brief Description and Treatment

If you’ve ever had shin splints before you know how painful and uncomfortable it can be to run and in some cases walk. I have been active in running and sports most of my life and when I ran track in high school I used to get extremely painful shin splints that would take me out of conditioning for up to a week. I tried icing the area which helped with some of the swelling but it just wasn’t enough. It wasn’t until I was much older and wiser that I discovered a good pair of running shoes can make all the difference.

There are several brands of running shoes on the market that can help prevent shin splints and help those that suffer from this condition recover quicker. There’s not really a secret formula to avoid this injury and most of the time it can be eliminated through a few simple techniques. Most often shin splints occur because of overuse. If you’re body is not used to the amount of exercise you’re doing, injuries will occur. A good rule of thumb to keep in mind is only increase your workout by 10% each week. This will help minimize injuries. It’s a good idea to stop engaging in whatever activity you’re doing to spark the pain and immediately ice the area to avoid further swelling. I’m a runner and so when I start feeling pain around my shins, I will either slow down or start walking. I’ve realized it’s better to save my legs today so I can run tomorrow instead of injuring myself today and not be able to run for the next few days. I will return home and place a cold pack on the areas for at least 15-20 minutes. Stretching is also beneficial for ankles and calf muscles in conjunction with weight training. Weight training can help strengthen your lower leg muscles which will help ward off injuries. If you do injure yourself it’s best to ice the area on and off for 24 hours. This should help control the swelling.

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New Balance 770V2

Getting back on track, some of the popular brands of shoes I use and will recommend are New Balance, Nike, Reebok, Adidas but not particularly in that order. Keep in mind there are several models of shoes within these brands and so I want to be as specific as possible when making recommendations because not all running shoes are created equal.

New Balance has an all around great running shoe at an affordable price. Many models seem to be lightweight and durable which is a little easier on the wallet. It can be easy to get caught up with wanting the newest model but I’m telling you from my experience this isn’t always the case. For instance check out the New Balance 770V2 which run $70-$80 per pair. This lightweight shoe has been great for outdoor running and can help maintain a nice even gait. The more cushion you have surrounding the arches the better support your feet and ankles can deliver to the lower leg.

Nike Lunarglide

I also like the Nike Lunarglide series because they tend to have more ventilation than many other brands and because I have plenty of support in the heal but tapers off towards the metatarsals. Because of this unique design I get the support where I need it and less where I don’t making this shoe more efficient. It is a little pricier starting around $110 up to $130+ per pair. The latest model wasn’t anymore impressive than the latter ones, so don’t feel like you must buy the newest shoe. The fit is comfortable as well and snug which is what I need when running long distances.

Reebok Realflex

Another shoe I recommend is made by Reebok and is probably the most inexpensive of the three reviewed so far. The Realflex Running Shoe has a strange zig zag appearance for the sole but seems to work quite well. I noticed less bouncing and more stability while running on rough surfaces. It is a little heavier than the New Balance model but overall seems like an inexpensive solid choice at $50- $70 per pair. The material is little less breathable than what I like to see but it’s a great choice for long distances. The support is great and provides lots of stability.

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Adidas Marathon 10 M

The last brand I want to review is Adidas. I actually love Adidas apparel but have found opportunities where improvements could be made with the running shoes. I love the style of their shoes and the snugness they provide. One particular brand I enjoy is the Marathon 10 M Shoe. Of course if you can’t tell by the name these shoes are great for long distances. They fit nice and snug and have really helped my running strides remain neutral. My only opportunity for this model is to use more breathable materials. This shoe has also been beneficial for some knee problems I was having when I first started running consistently. I found out that injury was due to how I was running. All in all, this shoe is a great inexpensive option for the runner that puts lots of miles in each week. The prices range from $45- $80 per pair which could even work out to be less expensive.

Keep in mind each of the models mentioned above can be used for either men or women. Since I’m a male, I can only give my perspective for what men may need. From women I have spoken with about these particular models, they all have agreed with my choices as being some of their top picks. Of course, everyone has their opinion and there are tons of brands and models to choose from but if you’re a serious runner finding a great pair of shoes is essential.

If you experience problems with your knees while running check out my hub on the Best Running Shoes for Knee Pain.

If you're interested in learning more about the sport of running, check out other topics in the same category.

Long distance racing, 5k race training, half marathon training, and 10k races.


Breakdown of Pros Vs. Cons with Price

 
New Balance 770V2
Nike Lunarglide
Reekbox Realflex
Adidas Marathon 10 M
Pros
Lightweight/ Support
Snug/Breathable
Great stability
Snug with support
Cons
Can be expensive
Very expensive
A little bulky
Less breathable
Cost
$70-$80 older model
$110-$130
$50-$70
$45-$80
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Comments

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  • Jason Matthews profile image

    Jason Matthews 

    4 years ago from North Carolina

    Shin splints can really be rough. It's nice to know that there are some good shoes out there that can help!

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