The shins are one of the muscles that are very hard to stretch especially that they are connected to the tibia and stretching them is next to impossible. However, shin stretches are very essential because the anterior tibialis muscle or the shin is very important during walking, running, sprinting and flexing the foot upwards.
There are a lot of variations in stretching the shins, but the main goal of every stretch is to increase the flexibility of the otherwise notoriously difficult-to-stretch shins. Here are some of the stretches that you can perform before and after any activity involving the legs:
• Standing Shin Stretch
The standing shin stretch is the most common stretch that you can do. Start by standing up straight and you may use objects or the wall for support. Place your foot to be stretched behind your other foot with the toes touching the ground. Pull the stretching leg forward by bending forward on your knees as you feel a stretch on your shin. Maintain the position for about 20 to 30 seconds for a good stretch. Reverse the position of the foot and repeat the steps.
• Kneeling Shin Stretch
If you want a deeper stretch on your anterior tibialis muscle, the kneeling shin stretch is an excellent exercise. Kneel on both knees on a flat surface keeping your shins flat on the ground. The toes should be pointing back in this case. Slowly rise and sit back on the heels. While you sit on your heels, a stretch is usually felt, but if not, place your hands on the floor at your back and begin leaning backwards for a full stretch. Hold the position for at least 20 seconds and release. Repeat 5 times.
• Ankle Push
This will help stretch your shins as well as improve the strength of the ankles or the Achilles tendon. Start by standing on a flat surface with the feet together. Raise your left heel so that the toes are touching the ground while keeping the right foot flat. Slowly bend your right knee as you push your ankle against the ground. Hold the position for at least 20 seconds and release. Repeat on the other leg.
• Seated Shin Stretch
This is effectively done in a grassy surface or on a soft carpet instead of concrete. Sit on the soft surface with the lower legs under the upper legs and your buttocks are resting on the heels. Place your right hand on the ground and use the left hand to lift your left knee to stretch the shins. Lift your left knee as far as possible from the ground. Hold the position for 20 seconds and repeat on the other leg.
• The reach your toes stretch
A conventional stretch of reaching your toes whether on a standing or sitting position is a good way to stretch the shins as well.
The shins are more taxed and receive the most tension while walking as compared to any other muscle group in the legs. In this line, stretching them before going out of the house or before training can help prevent injuries and pain on the area.