How to Fix IT Band Syndrome

I have IT Band Syndrome and it sucks.

I’ve been sidelined for the last three weeks, which is a pretty rubbish start to the Marathon in a Year challenge. I wanted to have three 20 mile weeks under my belt at this point and be back on track with my previous 5k PB of 19:21 (which I ran in October 2014). Instead I’ve been unable to run, even just for a couple of minutes, without pain.

At first I assumed my knee injury was nothing to worry about. I was going to rest it for a few days and then get straight back to running. Unfortunately, that hasn’t worked. From what I’ve read online IT Band Syndrome is rather stubborn and rest alone isn’t going to get rid of it.

I don’t know anything about fixing running injuries but here are a couple of¬†useful articles I’ve found specifically about IT Band Syndrome.

At the moment I’m trying not to run (I keep wanting to go and give it a go wishfully thinking that it might have magically got better) and also doing a load of these rehab exercises at least twice a day.¬†Other than that I don’t know what to do. I’m a little concerned that it hasn’t gone away and I feel rather helpless going forwards.

As for what caused it in the first place; I’m not really sure. From what I’ve read it could be due to my bowed legs, or perhaps some crossover between my feet when I’m running. I’ve looked at some photos of me at Oak Hill parkrun and my legs do often look rather wonky. Maybe I’m just unlucky.

To watch Episode 1 of Marathon in a Year, entitled ‘IT Band Syndrome’, click here.

If you have any ideas that you think could help me please leave a comment and let me know.

6 thoughts on “How to Fix IT Band Syndrome

  1. John (aka Wish I Were Riding)

    Good luck Ben. Keep everyone posted. Maybe someone will have a suggestion that really helps.

  2. Julien

    Good luck with your recovery! But when I take a look at your training dairy, I think you rush the things to much. Last week you knee felt 90% you said and you immediately ran 11 miles. As result your knee hurts again. Build (very) slowly up in the beginning is my advice…

  3. Anthony

    I can empathise with your frustration Ben. I suffered from IT band syndrome when I was training for a marathon a few years ago. At the time I tried all manner of exercises, but this compression band was what relieved the pain immediately (albeit temporarily when I wore it): http://www.amazon.co.uk/Pro-Tec-Band-Wrap-Compression-Pad/dp/B00VTAH9P4

    After the marathon, I stopped long distance running and the pain seemed to disappear. Couple of years later, I tried training again and the pain started coming back – it was a different kind of sensation and the compression band didn’t seem too effective. I decided to rest, and put the training on hold. During that time, I came across this e-book (it looks pretty comprehensive, but I can’t vouch for it)
    https://www.painscience.com/tutorials/iliotibial-band-syndrome.php

    Haven’t really been running too much lately, but hope this input helps.

  4. Justin

    This is a really interesting idea and website. Just the name alone is inspiring. This is my first visit and I already have you bookmarked – can’t wait to see where you guys take this.

  5. Jake

    I suffered from IT band problems years ago, and what it turned out to be was that I have a natural gate, but was sold some motion control trainers. They pushed my knee out of alignment, and that did in my IT band. I bought a pair of natural gate trainers, and within a week, my IT problems were gone. When my new trainers start to wear out, I get that IT pain again, and then I know it’s time to switch.

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