Q:

What are some stretching exercises for the shin and lower leg?

A:

Quick Answer

Some exercises that can provide a nice stretch for the shin and lower leg include ankle dorsiflexion and plantar flexion stretches as well as kneeling shin stretches and wall shin rises. These exercises are best completed in sets of three.

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Full Answer

To perform an ankle dorsiflexion and plantar flexion exercise, sit on the floor with the legs stretched straight and loop an exercise band or strap around the toe mound of the right foot. Sit up straight and pull back gently on the strap; hold for 15 to 30 seconds. Next, point the toes away from the body, pushing against the strap; hold for 15 to 30 seconds. Repeat on the left.

Another exercise to stretch the shins is called a kneeling shin stretch. To do this, kneel on a carpet or exercise mat keeping the legs and feet close together and the toes pointing straight back. Slowly sit down on the calves and heels. As the ankles are pressed flat into the floor, the sensation of tension in the shin muscles should arise. Hold for 10 seconds, and repeat as necessary.

Another exercise to stretch the lower leg muscles is called wall shin rises. Lean back against a wall with the heels placed approximately 12 inches away from the wall. Keeping the heels on the ground, bring the toes of both feet up, and stretch them back as far as possible. Then, lower the feet back down and hover the toes slightly off the ground. For best results, perform three sets of 10 to 15 repetitions.

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