Iliotibial (IT) band syndrome is a common injury among runners and cyclists. It occurs when the iliotibial band, a thick band of tissue that runs along the outside of the thigh from the hip to the knee, becomes tight and rubs against the bone on the outside of the knee. This can cause pain, swelling, and inflammation in the knee. The IT band helps to stabilize the knee and hip joints and also aids in the movement of the knee.
Iliotibial (IT) band syndrome affects mostly people who engage in activities that involve repetitive knee movements such as running, cycling, and hiking. It is common among athletes and fitness enthusiasts, particularly runners and cyclists. It is also common among people who have a sudden increase in physical activity, such as military personnel and hikers.
Additionally, individuals with certain underlying conditions may be more at risk for developing IT band syndrome. These may include:
- Muscle imbalances: People with imbalances in the muscles around the hip and thigh may be more likely to develop IT band syndrome.
- Overpronation: Overpronation, a condition in which the foot rolls inward too much when walking or running, can put extra stress on the IT band.
- Leg length discrepancies: People with one leg that is slightly longer than the other may be more prone to IT band syndrome.
The signs and symptoms of ITBS include:
- Pain on the outside of the knee, which is often worse when running downhill or on a banked surface.
- Stiffness or tightness in the iliotibial band.
- Tenderness and swelling in the area of pain.
- A snapping or popping sensation in the knee when the iliotibial band rubs over the thigh bone. Weakness or instability in the knee.
Below is also a video that further goes through the causes, signs and symptoms along with corrective exercises for iliotibial band syndrome:
Symptoms often worsen with activity and improve with rest. ITBS can also cause pain in the hip or thigh, but it is most commonly felt at the knee.
How We Can Help
If you’re looking to rehabilitate your iliotibial band syndrome, please enroll into our Unlock your Hip Mobility Rehab Program!
This 12 week hip mobility rehab program includes easy to follow exercises and stretches (accessible through our app) and completely takes the need out of guessing what exercises work for you. Best of all, it only requires 10 – 15 minutes every other day!
Or if you’re located in the Toronto area, book an appointment with one of our health care practitioners to get started in developing a personalized rehab plan for your iliotibial band syndrome!