Sports massage for shin splints
There are many ways to help deal with shin splint pain, there are also many shin splint pain relief products out there. Then there is sports massage, a technique that is used to help by improving muscle flexibility.
Below you will find information on how to perform a sports massage for shin splints or you can watch the video above. Seek professional advice before trying any self help treatments yourself as you could just make it worse. Before the masseur or masseuse starts they will do some checks to ensure you are ok for the procedure.
Shin splint pain relief by massage
Lubricant / massage oil / baby oil
You can find a variety of massage oils which are available to buy on the internet but the most common and cheapest available is probably going to be baby oil. The oil or lubricant is needed to allow the hands to glide smoothly across the skin, if you apply too much then you will lack control but just enough to allow for smooth, controlled movement across the skin.
You will also need to find a comfortable flat surface for your patient to sit on and a massage table would be best but the floor would do just fine but probably wouldnt be very comfortable for you or your patient.
The effleurage technique is used to apply light stroking which will warm up the area for a deeper and harder technique. Your hands should stroke firmlyupwards from the top of the ankle towards the knee. Working upwards helps because this is the way the blood is flowing towards the heart.
Then in a lightly manner bring your hands down the outside of the patients leg keeping them in contact without pressure. Repeat these steps in a slow stroking manner but try to cover as much of the patients leg as you can.
Carryout this technique for about 10 minutes and gradually applying more and deeper pressure when your up stroking.
Deep stripping the muscles
You your thumb on your left hand and for a the patients right leg apply some deep pressure to the posterior compartment muscles that can be found around the back of the shin. Please do not rub directly onto the bone as this would probably just cause alot of pain for the patient, it would only increase the pain and inflammation. Aim to massage the muscle, not the attachments to the bone.
Apply 10 to 20 stripping techniques and alternate between cross frictions. For increased pressure the action can be reinforced with the other hand.
A cross friction massage
With this technique we are going to apply some firm pressure across the muscle. You should start at the lower third of the shin area and work your way upwards whilest staying away from the bone. What is the aim of this technique? to try and stretch what we would call the sheath that surrounds the muscle and this should reduce pressure in the patiencts muscle compartments and in turn the stress on the lower leg area.
Lets apply this technique for about 5 minutes but alternating with stripping the muscle.
Finishing the procedure
The procedure should only last about 30 minutes and massage therapy can be applied each day if performed in a light pressure technique but in other cases of deeper techniques, your patient may need a few days to recover from the treatment.
Keep a good account of the difference between pain and inflammation each day, is the symptoms increase, do not continue the treatment.