IT Band Syndrome occurs when the Iliotibial Band (IT Band) in the leg gets irritated. The IT Band stretches from the outside of a person’s knee to the outside of the hip. IT Band Syndrome pain is usually felt on the outside of the knee as a dull ache that gets worse over the course of a run. It is a difficult injury that prevents athletes from training to his or her peak performance.
The iliotibial tract (also known as Maissiat’s band) is a longitudinal fibrous reinforcement of the fascia lata. The action of the ITB and its associated muscles is to extend, abduct, and laterally rotate the hip. In addition, the ITB contributes to lateral knee stabilization.
Causes of IT Band Syndrome
IT Band Syndrome is the overuse injury often suffered by runners and sometimes cyclists. Like almost every running injury, IT Band pain occurs when runners incorporate intense speed work, such as high intensity interval training, into their training plans without easing into the increased workload. The most common early symptom is a sharp, burning pain on the lateral (outside) part of the knee while running.
IT Band Syndrome also occurs when a runner uses worn out shoes and it’s essential to run only in high-quality, supportive shoes. An additional cause of IT Band Syndrome is when a runner runs a lot of miles with an unresolved pronation problem. “Pronation” means that a runner’s foot collapses inward upon impact, which puts tremendous strain on the knee and hips and strains the IT Band. (Pronation problems can be treated by a podiatrist.)
When it’s working right, your IT band stabilizes your hip and knee; when it’s not working right, you may experience pain along the outer portion of your knee.
Benefits of percussive massage for IT Band Syndrome
A tight IT Band can contribute to friction at the knee and massaging your Iliotibial Bands can bring big relief if you run, cycle, or are experiencing pain in your knees.
That said, percussive massage, with devices such as the MyoBuddy PRO® hand-held Massager can be an excellent treatment option!
The aim of percussive massage is to release tension in the muscle and fascia and stimulate blood flow.
To help you give it a try, we’ve posted a YouTube video: Treating IT Band Syndrome with Percussive Massage
In the video, MyoBuddy Fitness Educator Mary Biancalana, MS. (Edu CMTPT, LMT, Certified Personal Trainer) demonstrates how to use the MyoBuddy PRO Percussive Massager to treat the IT Band.
If you’re experiencing pain in your legs and you think it might be related to your IT bands, this video is worth watching!