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Shin Conditioning Made Easy

Updated on March 9, 2011
Shin conditioning is crucial to muay thai and mma
Shin conditioning is crucial to muay thai and mma

Here, in a nutshell, is the SAFEST and EASIEST way to condition your shins for muay thai or MMA.  Do not try to condition your shins by hitting them with hard objects, or in any way other than described below -- you risk serious injury.  There is NO way to make your shins condition faster.  It takes a long time. 

Anatomy of shin conditioning
Anatomy of shin conditioning

Steps for Shin Conditioning

Step 1: Always warm up before you begin kicking.


Step 2: Kick thai pads. If you are a beginner, you may experience some minor bruising. This should only last for 1 week, 2 maximum. You can use dit da jow to relieve any bruising. Keep kicking thai pads until you can kick them at full power without any discomfort or bruising.


Step 3: Lightly drill and spar with shin guards on. Be sure to use shin guards that are designed for combat sports -- I recommend Twins.


Step 4: Kick the heavy bag at a moderate power level. You should start this around the 6 month mark of training, assuming you have been kicking thai pads. Use dit da jow if you experience any bruising or swelling.


Step 5: Kick the heavy bag at full power. Do this only after you can kick it at moderate power with no bruising or discomfort.

Before you go full power, apply dit da jow to your shins. After you finish training, reapply to prevent bruising and swelling. Lay down and elevate your legs for 5 minutes -- this will also help alleviate injury.


Step 6: Drill and spar with heavy contact while wearing shin guards.


Step 7: Continue to kick thai pads, the heavy bag, and spar with shin guards.


Step 8: Treat any injuries immediately and allow them to fully heal before you continue shin conditioning. How to treat shin injuries

How Long Does it Take to Condition Your Shins

There are no magic bullets to shin conditioning.  It takes time for your bone to become denser, nerves to deaden, and muscle to strengthen.  You need to go gradually or you will only injure yourself.  Do not try to rush shin conditioning -- you can't make it go faster. 

If you follow these steps, you should be able to fight full contact in shin guards at approximately 1 year. At 2 years, your shins should be tough enough for full contact with no shin guards.

Shin Guards for Muay Thai and MMA

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