Shin conditioning: is it just about killing the nerves?
Practicing both a TMA (Qwan Ki Do, sino-vietnamese kung fu) and a combat sport (kickboxing) I think to have a pair of quite strong shins. Actually I feel no need to improve their actual level of conditioning since feeling shin-pain has become a rare thing for me.
During my TMA workout we are used to kick on opponent forearms without any kind of protective gear (about 3 series of 20 kicks); during the kickboxing training I hit the heavybag and a board with a rope around it.
Now I'm wondering HOW the shin-conditioning actually works (I mean, from a scientific perspective). I suppose it's all about killing nerves and psychology... right or wrong?
Is it the same killing your nerves hitting an heavybag or being hit by a bamboo/rattan stick? I mean, both methods are useful that's for sure, but maybe hitting the heavybag is enough, hitting something harder is too much (I suppose it could be more dangerous for your shin-health on a long term).
Surfing the web I found this page (http://www.ironlife.com/mag/issue6/shin.shtml) where the author states that «the idea that the shin can become harder, due to calcium deposits developing over the shin bone or the bone itself getting harder is somewhat of a myth». Somewhat?! That's really confusiong me... it's a myth or not?
From my experience I found that tapping shins with sticks is an useful technique. But now I'm asking WHY it works: it's because the killing of the nerves or because it creates a calcium deposit? Or maybe both of them?
Anyone could help me? I'd be glad to receive answer with a particular stress on the medical side of the question.
Thanks to all!
Even with well conditioned shins, having your kick checked can hurt like a bitch. It is a bad idea to tap your shins with a bottle or stick, if you want to know why or basically any of your questions in the OP do a forum search.
Thats the way to kill the nerves on the leg.
Originally Posted by Sang
I prefer just kicking a hard heavy bag with the shins. This causes the shin bones to slightly splinter and then the calcium fills the gaps as they gradually get thicker and stronger. This doesnt do the same nerve damage and makes the actual bones stronger.
What about rolling pins? Anybody use those?
I have heard they work, and it seems to me that if they do in fact work it would nullify the splinters-calcium deposit argument.
"This is why we are here. Because the Martial Arts for too long have been cloaked in an unnecessary level of secrecy bordering on mysticism, and its in these shadows that the cockroaches love to hide. -Phrost"
Originally Posted by Squerlli
Is it not true however that in later life, bones that have been calcified in such a way become brittle?
I've read that you shoud just use leather heavybags and leather Thai pads. Then again it was an article out of BB magazine.
I would expect this to lead to stress fractures, not strengthening.
Originally Posted by MilkManX
I wouldnt use rolling pins or bottles unless you know what you are doing, you just dont want to batter the shin like that. Condiitioned shins in muay thai are part of a process not an overnight ride. The heavy bags are of various materials and weights and the thai pad are all part of the process.
If you use something like a rolling pin or bottle, you must be very gentle to start and also massage before and after the shin itself up and down, to bring the brusiing to the surface and disperse it. I always used a bruise wine or medicine commonly used in kung fu for iron palm or hitting, it works very well as a massage liniment.
But the best way is over time against various bags and pads going longer and with more force as the shin toughens. Then doing leg checks and counters wiht shin guards first, using less and less of padded shin guards.
Also I dont believe you are killing the nerves because after two years training in thailand, my shins were rock hard and I didnt feel a thing. RIght now, they are still tough but I got back into serious training and they are bruising and hurt on contact here and there, not like in the beginning but I can see its a process of condiitioning and not dead nerve endings. They are getting back to where they were and I see in a few months I will be back to having very, very tough shins again
Just a few thoughts
Last edited by astralfire; 8/13/2008 5:29pm at .
Just a wingnut theory from a former hooker...
When I played rugby back in school, i was the hooker. Yes, jokes are expected. Being in with the forwards, I just got used to all he kicks to the shins. Maybe we're just training ourselves not to care anymore.
I'm pretty sure you can buy the liniment used in Thailand for shin conditioning off the internet.
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