Fix Shin Splints with Tibialis Anterior Foam Roll

It is likely that you have suffered from shin splints at some stage of your life when you have been active on your feet. Shin splints are acute pains experienced at the front of the shin and come in varying degrees of severity – from sharp pain and micro fractures around the shin bone (tibia) to dull aches experienced throughout the front of the lower leg. The important thing to do once you experience shin splints is to STOP doing what is causing the pain in the first place. Seek remedy for the condition and consult a relevant professional before the condition becomes more severe and chronic.

Improper running gait, flat feet, changes in ground surfaces, or anything where you are active on your feet are the main causes of shin splints. Overuse and excessive strain of the Tibialis Anterior (a muscle to the side of the shin bone on the front of the lower leg) is responsible for around 90% of shin splint cases. In this video demo with description (below), you will be shown how to greatly reduce the strain on this area using a foam roller. If you are suffering from shin splints (or have in the past), give this a try for some welcome relief:


  1. Position yourself over the foam roller in somewhat of a push-up/front plank posture
  2. Tuck the knee of the side you are going to work on up towards your chest so that the roller is in contact with your lower shin near the ankle.
  3. Proceed to slowly roll your lower leg down the roller along the lateral side of your shin bone until you reach your knee – make sure to note any tight/tender spots (trigger points) along the way.
  4. As you warm up the area with a few full length rolls up and down, start to slow the rolling down and stop on the areas where you feel trigger points. Bear down on these areas and focus your attention on them.
  5. Apply pressure to each trigger point for around one minute (or until the tension dissipates)


As you get more comfortable and your tight spots begin to loosen up, apply more of your own bodyweight and even stack both two legs to get deeper into the tender areas. Be careful not to foam roll bony prominences whilst doing this exercise.

If you followed our guidelines above, you should have noticed a marked difference in your lower leg and a great reduction in pain and discomfort. Don’t stop there though – continue to do this exercise daily to improve your tissue quality over time and prevent the pain from returning.