The Illiotibial Band
The Illio-tibial band is a long band of connective tissue which runs from the Ilium (pelvis) to the lateral (outside) knee on the Tibia (shin bone). The repetitive tension and loading through this band can result in pain located on the lateral knee where the band can ‘friction’ against the femur (the thigh bone).
This injury is often related to an increase in running volume (distance per week or number of runs per week) or downhill running.
A treatment programme will involve muscle and soft tissue release (massage or dry needling), joint mobilisation, exercises that involve core stabilisation, hip stability and postural education can help to make you stronger so that there is less aggravation of this area when running.
Stretching & Foam Rolling Can Help
Stretching and foam rolling of all tight areas are also important self management strategies.
Functional lengthening of the calf muscles for example will help your ankle movement which can help change your hip position. It is very common to see people with stiff ankles and feet walk with their feet turned outwards, which will in turn cause more stress on the iliotibial band.
Everything is connected.
Running technique changes may also help to reduce the load on the area. Increasing your step rate (cadence) so that you take quicker, shorter steps will help your foot to land more underneath your body rather than in front (overstriding).
For this injury running in a more lightweight minimalist shoe may help reduce excessive heel striking (which can place more load on the knee) but this needs to be added in carefully.
This blog was written by Adrian from the CBD Physio practice. To make a booking press the button that’s below.