Exercises for your IT Band

Posted on in Industry News, News

healthy-person-woman-sportIT band syndrome (ITBS) is an extremely common injury for runners. The thick, fibrous band of connective tissue running down the outside of your thigh is connective to your gluteal muscles. When the gluteal muscles are weak or tired they can cause knee instability causing your knee to be pulled either inward or outward.

Weak gluteal muscles aren’t the only cause of ITBS. Too much sitting, not enough strength training, overtraining, or running too fast are other common causes. ITBS is preventable through strengthening certain areas of your body. If you are already sidelined with ITBS there are a few things you can do to get back on track:

  1. Stop running – I know, this is going to be the hardest part of recovery. Try not to run for at least 7 – 14 days.
  2. Perform the following exercises – these can help you heal your IT band injury within a week or two if it is a minor case. Perform this routine every other day and use the alternating days for core work or other strength exercises.

Before you begin

  • If you suspect you have ITBS see your healthcare provider immediately. Never start a new exercise program without consulting with your doctor.
  • You will need a piece of rubber tubing for extra resistance. We recommend using our Sup-R Tubing.
  • Modify the number of reps or take extra time between reps if necessary. The goal is to recover, not push yourself too much.
  • If you do not currently have ITBS you can do this routine once a week for prevention.

The moves: 

  1. Lateral leg raise – lie on your right side with a piece of tubing around your ankles. Lift your left leg to about 45 degrees in a controlled manner, then lower your leg. Do 30 reps per side.
  2. Clamshell – lie on your right side with your knees together and the tubing wrapped around your lower thighs. Your thighs should be about 45 degrees from your body and your knees should be bent at 90 degrees. Open your legs like a clamshell without moving your pelvis. Keep the movement slow and controlled. Perform 30 reps per side.
  3. Hip thrust – lie faceup with your knees bent and your feet on the ground. Life one leg so your weight is on the opposite leg and your back. Using your glutes, lift your hips, then lower. Do 25 reps on each side.
  4. Side step/shuffle – tie the Sup-R Tubing around your ankles. It should be tight enough to provide constant resistance. With your knees slightly bent, take 10 lateral steps. While still facing the same direction, take 10 more steps back to the starting position. When you return to the starting position you have completed one set. Perform five sets of 10 steps in each direction.
  5. Hip hike – begin by standing on your right foot with your pelvis in a neutral position. Drop the left side so it is several inches below the right side of your pelvic bone. Activate your right hip muscle to lift your left side back to the starting position. Do 20 reps per side.
  6. Iron cross – lie faceup with your arms out at your sides. Swing your right leg over your torso and up to your left hand. Repeat with your left leg and perform 10 reps per side.

Other things you can do to help recover from ITBS are foam rolling and icing the painful area with a cold pack.

Click here for the original article on Greatist.