2 min read


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How to fix IT Band Syndrome

If you’re an active individual, you may have experienced discomfort or irritation at your IT band a.k.a. the iliotibial band.

IT band syndrome is pain along the outside of the knee that is typically felt while the knee is slightly bent during movement, and can become so bothersome that it sidelines you from activity. It is the second most common cause of knee pain.

Who Is At Risk of IT Band Syndrome?
IT band syndrome typically affects people that run, cycle, hike and participate in sports that require significant power and strength from the legs. Those that experience IT band pain often present with some form of dysfunction with one of the muscles that attach to the IT band – that is, the gluteus medius, gluteus maximus, tensor fasciae latae, or vastus lateralis. Dysfunction in these muscles can include muscle tightness, weakness, and overuse.

IT Band

What Are the Symptoms of IT Band Pain?
IT band syndrome is felt along the outside of the knee joint. This pain tends to worsen with activity, and ease with rest. IT band pain is sometimes known as “IT band friction” in that clicking may be heard when the knee is moving from a bent to straightening position (flexion into extension). The most intense pain is often present when the knee is bent at 30 degrees (a position typically seen in running). Other symptoms can include: clicking on the outside of the knee; warmth and tenderness to the touch along the outside knee; tension and pain along the hip and thigh.

You may notice more prominent IT band syndrome symptoms if you’ve:

  • Increased training volume
  • Changed surfaces while training e.g. trail running vs. road running
  • Present with muscle strength and length differences at the hip and outer thigh.

    IT Band Syndrome

    What Can Be Done to Address IT Band Pain?
    Immediate resting, icing, and stretches are typically prescribed when treating acute IT band syndrome. This may be followed by gradual changes to volumes in training, and specific treatment catered to your needs.

    Your licensed therapist at Myodetox can provide a thorough assessment to determine what structures and movements may be contributing to your IT band pain. Discomfort and tension along the IT band is often the result of dysfunction of the muscles that attach to it along the hip. In fact, some evidence suggests that IT band pain may be muscle weakness at the hips(1). Your licensed therapist can also help with differential diagnosis of your pain, carefully reviewing other structures that may or may not be contributing to your pain.

    Interventions that can help IT band syndrome include:

  • Hands-on therapy e.g. myofascial release along the hips and thigh.
  • Exercise e.g. corrective movements for muscle lengthening, strengthening, and movement coordination.
  • Education & Self-management e.g. load changes, foam rolling, ice vs. heat.

    Two Home Exercise Tips:

  • Foam roll: the video below focuses on foam rolling the entirety of the leg, and not just the area that hurts. Remember, the IT band connects multiple muscles!
    Click here to watch the video

  • Leg strengthening: the following exercise incorporates the entirety of your leg. You want a strategy that can focus on getting your hips and thigh involved so that you move pain free!
    Click here to watch the video

    Ready to take the next step?
    Your licensed therapist at Myodetox can provide a thorough assessment to determine what structures and movements associated with the IT band may be contributing to the symptoms. They can help you figure out which movements, muscles, joints, or even nerves may be contributing to the IT pain. And most importantly, they’ll devise a plan with you to treat and manage your pain so you can get back to doing what you love.

    Find your nearest clinic!

  • 3 min read

    DIY: Avoid Muscle Aches During Your Flight

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    DIY: Avoid Muscle Aches During Your Flight

    Is it officially travel season yet? Well, we can’t wait and we say it is now! Grab your suitcases, sunglasses, and dreaded muscle aches..?

    Everybody loves to travel, but who loves the stress that comes along with it? All the multiple line-ups, overnight layovers, and long airplane rides can take a huge toll on your body – you’ll be broken before you arrive at your destination. So, we came up with four great tips to help with muscle pain relief that will have your body ready for take-off!

    1. Stay Hydrated

    Airplanes have very low humidity and can lead you to become dehydrated. So drink lots of water the day before and while you are on the flight. Avoid alcohol and caffeinated beverages before and during the trip since it will dehydrate you.

    2. Pump Your Ankles

    Pump your ankles from side-to-side and up-and-down to avoid stiffness, and swelling, and twisted ankle pain. Since you’re sitting for extended periods of time, the muscles that are responsible for pumping blood and fluid back up our legs are not being used at all, which can lead to pooling of fluid and blood in our lower leg over time. The swelling itself is not dangerous, but it can cause blood clots which are very dangerous and can potentially cause death. So pump away!

    3. Movement is Medicine

    It’s never good to stay in one position, especially sitting for long periods of time. We all heard the phrase, “sitting is the new smoking”, and you can guarantee you will be sitting and sleeping in an uncomfortable position on the plane. Your body will take a beating and cause many hip problems, spine pain, shoulder injuries, and pain in your neck muscles. So how do we combat that? It’s simple – move. Get up and walk every 30 minutes, if possible.

    4. Stuck in your seat? Let me introduce you to Pandiculation!

    What is the Pandiculation definition? It’s the natural stretching that occurs when you first wake up in the morning. When you’re yawning and reaching up towards the sky with your arms and hands to stretch. This stretch is done to every single part of your body even within limited space such as an airplane seat. So reach your hand up towards the sky, extend your legs, move your neck, contract and expand your chest and move your body in all directions to ease out any area that you feel is restricted. The key is to slowly do these movements and feel where your body naturally wants to go to relax tension. Just remember, not to bump into your neighbour.