ITB SYNDROME EXERCISES Jason Fitzgerald provides a written explanation of Iliotibial Band Syndrome (also known as ITB Friction Syndrome) and a set of hip strengthening exercises to beat it in his 2015 article for RunningCompetitor.com. “10 Exercises to Treat IT BAND Syndrome” also includes a video clip demonstrating the moves. If some look familiar you may have seen a few of the same exercises on the American Association of Orthopedic Surgeons Knee and Hip Conditioning guides, featured in an earlier BLOG post.
The side leg lift and clamshell exercises are two of the most commonly prescribed moves to help with knee problems, acting to strengthen the gluteus medius muscle, so expect to find them on nearly every set of go-to routines for runners.
The exercises include: side leg raise, clamshell, hip thrust, side hip bridge, side shuffle, pistol squat, and hip hike. A few extra mobility exercises are also demonstrated in the video: donkey kick, iron cross, and scorpion.
A search of the ITB topic will send you to many different sites, but this one piece offers concise information in a single resource from a USTFA-certified coach. For an in depth higher level discussion check out the Medscape article that has a few drawings. The Etiology section can be daunting but the last paragraphs that cover “hip adductor weakness” and “myofascial restrictions and inflexibility” are that causes that Fitzgerald’s exercises and stretches are aimed at fixing.
Fitzgerald cautions that his routine is not a full treatment program for ITB Syndrome but that it will probably be able to help most runners with a “mild case of ITBS” get back to running after about 1-2 weeks. If time off and performance of these exercises daily doesn’t seem to help prevent a return of knee or hip pain, seek professional help from a physical therapist.
If you aren’t having problems this set of exercises will prevent future issues from developing!
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EARNED RUNS is edited and authored by me, runner and founder. I began participating in road races before 5Ks were common. I've been a dietitian, practiced and taught clinical pathology, and been involved with research that utilized pathology. I am fascinated with understanding the origins of disease as well as health.
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