Can Roller Skating Cause Shin Splints?


Roller skating is entertaining and stimulating for anyone who loves to feel the wind in their hair. All you need is a pair of good roller skates, and you’re ready to cruise around town. However, you need to be careful. Roller skating can cause shin splints for many reasons that we’ve discussed below.

The causes of shin pain during roller skating may be the result of accustomizing to skating, having a poor posture during skating, wearing badly fitting skates or having too soft wheels, having inefficient skate trucks, or having a previous medical condition causing shin pain. Stretch and warm up, and take supplement to prevent this.

Causes of Shin Pain During Roller Skating

Some causes of shin pain that occurs during roller skating include:

Accustomization to Skating

Muscle soreness can be a problem for beginners who opt for roller skating. Initially, you might face severe shin pain after spending some time on roller skates. This happens to all people who have just stepped into the world of roller skating. Your shins might ache mildly or severely, depending on the duration of the skating session.

Severe shin pain occurs when you spend hours skating without resting your muscles. Your shin muscles might be most affected because they are engaged while skating. Since your muscles are not used to such kind of exertion, they tend to get exhausted quickly. Consequently, you will feel your shins aching due to acute muscle soreness.

As a beginner, you should expect shin pain during the first couple of weeks of roller skating. But after a while, your muscles get used to the exertion, and your pain fades away. Experts always suggest novice skaters take things step by step to ensure they don’t experience severe shin pains.

Roller Skating Cause Shin Splints

Poor Posture

One of the major reasons for shin pain during roller skating is poor posture. An unbalanced posture can result in excruciating pain and shin splints. The first advice experts give to beginners is maintaining a balanced body posture during skating. Don’t forget to relax, release the pressure and bend your knees. Also, your legs must be bent instead of being stiff. Make sure your knees are vertically aligned with your shoulders while your heels line with your buttocks.

Badly-fitting Skates

As a roller skater, badly-fitting skates can be your worst nightmare. This is because the fitting of your skates greatly impacts your skating experience. A perfectly fitted pair of skates ensures comfortable skating, while a badly-fitting one can cause multiple problems like shin splints, blisters, and foot pain. If the skates are too small, they can cause blisters, calluses, and ingrown toenails. Meanwhile, using extra-large skates results in hammertoes, bunions, and constant irritation. Therefore, experts always recommend using the right size of roller skates for a pain-free, enjoyable skating experience.

Too-soft Wheels

It is important to double-check the durometer rating of your roller skate wheels. The durometer rating reflects the hardness of the wheel, which is indicated by a number followed by a letter A. A ‘0’ durometer rating represents the softest wheel, while a ‘100’ specifies the hardest wheel.

However, most roller skate wheels have a durometer rating above 68A. Anything lower than that will cause the wheel to wear down quickly and might result in shin splints. We highly recommend using wheels having a 72-85 durometer rating for better grip, enhanced maneuverability, and increased wear resistance.

Skate Trucks

The wheel axle passes through a piece of metal commonly known as skate trucks. Their purpose is to attach to the plate while keeping the wheels in place. You can either tighten or loosen these trucks to optimize the control you want with your roller skates.

Be mindful that inefficiently optimized skate trucks can adversely affect your skating performance. More so, you can suffer from mild to severe shin pain. Most skaters prefer skate trucks to be tightly fitted to their boots. This gives them more control and, ultimately, a better skating performance. However, there are skaters who intentionally loosen their skate trucks for enhanced maneuverability.

Roller-Skating-Shin-Splints

Prior Medical Condition

Skating enthusiasts can’t wait to spend time skating on a warm, sunny day. Unfortunately, some of them might have prior medical conditions that hold them back. People with medical conditions that involve leg muscles and shins can have a hard time skating. They might feel excruciating shin pain, and in some cases, they can’t go skating at all. Such individuals are advised to strictly follow the doctor’s instructions before jumping into their roller skates.

Tips to Avoid Shin Pain when Roller Skating

Here are some useful tips to avoid shin pain when roller skating.

Don’t Forget to Stretch Your Legs and Warm-Up

An effective way to avoid shin pain when roller skating is by stretching your legs. Skaters often ask, “how should you stretch shin muscles?” A proven way of stretching your shin muscles is to stand straight and then slightly bend your knees. Performing this exercise several times for 15 to 30 seconds can relieve stiffness in your muscles.

You can also perform a warm-up before putting on your roller skates to avoid shin pain. Most experts recommend warming up before any physical activity. Doing so not only increases the blood flow in your muscles but also prepares them for exertion.

Take Supplements to Avoid Leg Pain

Sometimes, taking supplements is a viable option to get rid of leg pain. Leg pain during roller skating can occur due to several reasons. Either your muscles don’t have the endurance for prolonged skating sessions, or your body lacks nutrition. This hinders not only your skating performance but also your overall experience.

To counter this, you can use vitamins and supplements to counter mineral deficiencies in your body. Or you can use supplements to prevent leg pain during skating. However, we don’t recommend using supplements without expert advice as they may have several side effects.

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