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IT Band Issues


Doug
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Anyone here had any IT Band inflammation/irritation issues? I've been having problems for a couple of months now, finally saw my orthapedic guy yesterday and he verified diagnosis. What I'm interested in is how long this kept people from intense activities. Also, any tips or tricks for faster healing.

 

I'm thinking I won't be running for at least a couple of weeks, probably won't be doing any hiking either. :cry:

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I would recommend going to a physical therapist who works with athletes. A PT would be able to determine what is causing your IT band to be aggravated.

For myself, I try to stretch my hamstrings and hips but use a foam roller, I call it the "evil foam roller", to roll out my IT band. It hurts like heck but really keeps things moving.

Did the ortho give you any advice about time or biomechanical issues?

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Oh man, I suffered with IT band problems for MONTHS. It's a drag. Miserable, miserable time.

 

Get a good PT, and do what he says. Keep that shit stretched out, and always stretch before and especially after a workout.

 

In my case, the trouble was caused by over-pronation in my feet, plus a week hip abductor which was exasperating the IT band. Orthotics in the shoes helped the pronation, and PT on the hips helped get things in place biomechanically. I still do a lot of stretching on my hips to prevent it from coming back.

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My doc did give me a scrip for PT. His advice was to avoid impact activities (running and hiking) and that before and after any other activities add some IT band specific stretches to my routine. If it doesn't seem to get better in the next 2 - 3 weeks, then PT would be advisable. I based on yours and Rob's input I may go earlier to see if there is a biomechanical issue causing it. My guess was that I had been running 20 + miles a week for a while, backed off and then started up again.

 

My chirpractor recommended the foam roller and my gym at work has a couple. Your description is spot on, it is a nasty hurt!

 

Doc says 2-3 weeks before I may start running or hiking, though I will probably do my traditional Mt. Si hike on Turkey day.

 

Thanks for the input!

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Acute: ice massage, rest, stretch hams and quads, fix any hip or lumbar problems with the chiro you're seeing and have him/her check your fibular hear at the knee joint too.

Post-acute: continue to stretch hams and or quads, foam roller on ITB itself, cross friction and stripping with a tool (aka Graston or Gua-Sha). get your feet checked for over/under pronation along with a whole host of other foot problems that could be leading to ITB issues. Work on strengthening your hip abductors and adductors depending if your knee bows inward or outward. Perfect form Squats and lunges as well.

There are ITB straps that take pressure off the the band.

 

Note: The illiotibial band is a large sheet of connective tissue so tough, that it really can't be stretched. The muscle that controlls it is called the Tensor Fascia Latea. The TFL is a tiny muscles and can also become irritated if it's working too hard. Instead try strengthening your gluts, and stretching your hams or quads that could be pulling your ITB one way or another. Strengthen the weaker of the muscles (hams vs quads).

A hip, lumbar, leg length, or foot imbalance could be causing your knee to rotate just enough to have the ITB rub against your femur or tibial head.

 

It's a nastly little condition that is complicated to find the underlying issue. Once the issue is targeted, it can be relatively easy to fix.

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Acute: ice massage, rest, stretch hams and quads, fix any hip or lumbar problems with the chiro you're seeing and have him/her check your fibular hear at the knee joint too.

Post-acute: continue to stretch hams and or quads, foam roller on ITB itself, cross friction and stripping with a tool (aka Graston or Gua-Sha). get your feet checked for over/under pronation along with a whole host of other foot problems that could be leading to ITB issues. Work on strengthening your hip abductors and adductors depending if your knee bows inward or outward. Perfect form Squats and lunges as well.

There are ITB straps that take pressure off the the band.

 

Note: The illiotibial band is a large sheet of connective tissue so tough, that it really can't be stretched. The muscle that controlls it is called the Tensor Fascia Latea. The TFL is a tiny muscles and can also become irritated if it's working too hard. Instead try strengthening your gluts, and stretching your hams or quads that could be pulling your ITB one way or another. Strengthen the weaker of the muscles (hams vs quads).

A hip, lumbar, leg length, or foot imbalance could be causing your knee to rotate just enough to have the ITB rub against your femur or tibial head.

 

It's a nastly little condition that is complicated to find the underlying issue. Once the issue is targeted, it can be relatively easy to fix.

 

well Mike, I think IT band also originates from the upper fibers of Gluteus Maximus. when the irritation is on the lateral side of the knee i always find Vastus Medialis to be weak. It als usually combined with chronic shortening of Bicep Femoris. However I find very frequent rotation is happening due to weak Tibialis Posterior. In more severe cases a callus bunion will start developing at trhe base of the big toe.

As far as the rehab goes:

I would recommend some deep, deep work on Gluteus, Quadriceps, Hamstring, abductr muscles, as well as Tib Posterior. Then it's back to the gym and start working on muscle balancing. Like with Medial Epicondylitis of the elbow I find rest and ice quite ineffective or not having much impact on the condition.

BTW i would also treat Iliopsoas, gluteus minimus and QL in this case.

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I had IT band syndrome going on a couple years ago. First I tried a few shots of cortizone, but that didn't do much - I thought my knee was screwed for a while - then I went to PT - he showed me some important stretches quad/ham/ amnd most important -- find a surface about as high as your pelvis, then bring your leg up while bending it, and put it on the surface so that the instep of your foot, and the inner side of your leg is faceing up. (your knee should be bent too)and lean forward until you feel stretch on the outside of your thigh just below the glute. do three sets of 40 seconds with this stretch and the other two. That stretch was money for me. I also balanced out the musculature of my lower quad by doing a lot of jump rope -- so i developed the inside of my lower quad, that in theory helped to pull my patella over to the inside thus reducing friction on the IT. Good luck.

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So my IT Band has come along very nicely. I just did the stretching and other exercises recommended. I have been running about 4 - 5 miles per week for the past couple of weeks and the symptoms I had been experiencing have gone away......THEN I PULL A FUCKING HAMSTRING (on the same leg!) SKIING ON NEW YEARS EVE!!!! AAARRRGGGHHH!!!!!

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IT problems always plagued me whenever I tried to push my mileage over 55/week or so. I think the best things that I have done for it are yoga and stretching. Terribly painful thing to have. Also "The Stick" or a foam roller are fantastic things to own and work out tightness. Usually I could be back to running around 40/week within a month, spend some time in the pool aqua jogging, hard work that.

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