According to the Journal of Sports Medicine and Journal of Anatomy, iliotibial band syndrome (ITBS) is the most common knee disorder that athletes suffer from. Many other people can suffer from it as well. The condition occurs when the iliotibial band becomes inflamed and causes pain as it runs along the femur. Anyone that suffers from ITBS should understand the causes and treatments available.
What Causes ITBS?
A number of different factors can contribute to ITBS. Here are some of the common causes that you should be aware of:
- The inside of your quad muscle is considerably weaker than the outside. This creates an imbalance in force, which can create excess pressure on the IT band and cause the knee to track inward.
- The IT band isn’t stretched properly, which can cause it to become extremely tight. This is especially common with athletes and people that have to exert a lot of pressure on their legs for work.
- People with leg length discrepancies are also at high risk of developing ITBS, because both of their legs will have to contract to absorb differences in force.
Fortunately, all of these problems are treatable. You will need to consult with a physical therapist to understand the root of your problem. You may want to read about the causes of knee pain to learn more about the contributing factors before seeking treatment.
Steps for Treating ITBS
There are a number of things that you can do to treat iliotibial band syndrome and other forms of knee pain. Here are some tips that you will want to follow.
Physical and Chiropractic Treatments for Leg Length Issues
Many people find that their legs are different lengths after an accident. They may also face this problem if one of their legs is placed under a lot of stress from driving long distances or lifting objects improperly. The problem is that the leg often gets shifted higher into the hip, which can be treated with chiropractic care of physical therapy.
Exercise Your Inner Quad
If there is an imbalance in the strength of your inner and outer quads, then you will need to have the problem treated. You can correct the discrepancy with a variety of inner leg exercises. You can strengthen your inner quad by tying a band to a door knob, attaching the other end to your ankle and lifting your leg with the inner quad facing away from the door. Your physical therapist can give you other exercises to try until your knee and IT band feel better.
Stretch Your IT Band
Stretching your IT band will be the most important thing that you can do. You will want to speak with your physical therapist to find out which stretches are best. In the meantime, you may want to read about some of the stretches listed on Medicine Net.