Individuals who tend to shift their shoe pressure medially experience a greater likelihood of experiencing shin splints.
A new study examined 79 runners to determine whether they tended to place more pressure medially or laterally during gait, and then checked for symptoms of shin splints after endurance training. Those runners who placed more pressure medially had more instances of medial tibial stress syndrome.
This study adds to the growing body of research suggesting that subtalar stability is essential for optimal functioning of the ankle joint. In theory, exercises that strengthen the muscles of the arch could potentially teach individuals to shift more pressure laterally and thus aid in the prevention of shin splints.
What would be interesting to test is whether there are any differences between severity of shin splints in the left leg compared to the right leg in these individuals. Because right-side dominant humans tend to put more medial pressure on their left shoe, this could theoretically lead to a greater occurrence of shin splints on the left. Unfortunately, this was not tested by the present study.
Brund, R. B., Rasmussen, S., Nielsen, R. O., Kersting, U. G., Laessoe, U., & Voigt, M. (2017). Medial shoe-ground pressure and specific running injuries: A 1-year prospective cohort study. Journal of Science and Medicine in Sport.