Originally Posted by Konaborne
Anyone heard of minimalist stuff getting rid of shin splints too?
Got beach PT tomorrow too...they dont let us take off our shoes when we swim...gonna need new shoes anyways (But I just bought these New Balance's for $100
Short answer to the minimalist shoes helping with shinsplints is yes. But it's not because they're minimalist--it's because they have a zero heel-to-toe drop (or close to it).
There is almost no lift (measured in mm they're usually between 0 and 4, which is miniscule compared to your standard-offering Nikes or Reeboks). Most running shoes you find at Foot Locker (and the like) are going to have a huge heel by comparison. Unfortunately the result is a forced heel strike. Shoes with a very small heel-to-toe drop go the other way--it's the forefoot that hits first.
Look into something with a zero heel-to-toe drop. The options are ever-expanding. A good test of whether a store (or sales person) can help is by asking for what they offer in that category. If they can help, chances are most of what they have will be minimalist. Some options in that category you may not be familiar with:
Merrel makes one called the Glove (three versions available for terrain), and New Balance makes the Minimus. One advantage to any of this kind of shoe is that they won't get heavy after you've been in the water. Anyway, here's a link to some good info: http://zero-drop.com/?page_id=759
(I've got those Vivo Neos--got 'em off the Clymb for about 60 bucks)
I also own a pair of Inov8s. Both are extremely light and comfortable. That said, it takes time to convert from regular shoes to shoes like these. All those muscles and joints that haven't been doing their job have to catch up and that can be as painful as hitting the weights for the first time in years! I have read that the Nike Free is considered a good "transition shoe" and could be acquired relatively cheaply. I would only consider it a transition shoe because the heel is still a bit on the thick side.
There's my two cents on shoes!