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Shin splints are every runner's nemesis, but women are three times more likely to be afflicted than men, according to Australian researchers. Plus, a study of female athletes published in the Journal of the American Medical Association found that women's shin splints are up to three-and-a-half times more likely to progress to stress fractures than men's.
Additional risk factors for shin splints include flat feet and overpronating (excessive inward roll of the foot after landing)—both conditions that also affect more women than men. Researchers speculate that this may be due to increased prevalence of osteoporosis in women, the effects of the pregnancy hormones in relaxing ligaments in the feet and legs, and/or the prolonged wearing of high heels. So if you're feeling pain during your Saturday morning runs, you may want to ditch your date-night stilettos on Friday.
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