IT Band (or illiotibial band) pain is a common orthopedic condition that occurs on the outside part of the knee. Foam rolling the IT band is a common IT band pain treatment, but most of us do it WRONG! In this video I’m demonstrating the best way to foam roll your IT band correctly to decrease tension, decrease pain, and help you return to normal function.
WHAT IS THE IT BAND?
The illiotibial band (or IT Band) is a large, thick tendon that runs down the lateral side of your leg. It originates up on the front 1/3 of your hip bone, comes down your leg, crosses your knee joint, and attaches into the outside of your shin bone (tibia).
Because of this arrangement, the tendon is actually in front of the knee joint pivot point when the knee is extended straight but the travels behind the knee joint pivot point when the knee is bent.
WHY DOES MY IT BAND HURT?
Any increased tension in the IT band can result in too much rubbing over the femoral condyle (big round boney spot just above your knee) which can lead to friction which ultimately results in pain. This pain is often sharp, intense, and happens with movement.
IT Band pain is often the result of an overuse injury. If there’s some tension in your IT Band and you’re only taking a few steps a day you’ll probably be okay. But if you’re very active and taking thousands and thousands of steps everyday (common in runners) your tight IT Band can really flare up.
HOW DO I FIX MY IT BAND PAIN?
The solution to this problem is to logically decrease tension in your IT band; foam rolling this area is one of the most-effective ways. But here’s the thing that EVERYONE DOES WRONG!! Your IT band is a TENDON! It is CONNECTIVE TISSUE and it does NOT STRETCH or ELONGATE!
Since there is no way to decrease tension or “stretch” your IT band itself, you have to start focusing your efforts on all the MUSCLES that attach TO the IT band in order to make treating this area more effective.
WHAT ARE THE MUSCLES THAT ARE MAKING MY IT BAND TIGHT?
You have 4 primary muscles that influence the IT band. They are:
TENSOR FASCIAE LATAE: this is a small hip flexor on your anterior hip.
GLUTEUS MAXIMUS: the large hip extensor in the back of your hip ties into the IT band.
VASTUS LATERALIS: the quad muscle on the outside part of your upper leg.
BICEPS FEMORIS: the lateral hamstring muscle that inserts right in the same area as the IT band on the outside part of your shin bone.
Decreasing tension in these areas will impact the IT band and help you experience relief from your knee pain symptoms.
HOW TO FOAM ROLL YOUR IT BAND CORRECTLY
The following video will demonstrate the correct way to foam roll your IT band for maximum positive effect in helping you to treat your pain:
JARED’S FAVORITE FOAM ROLLER: https://amzn.to/2A7Yqo7
RELEVANT TIME STAMPS TO THIS VIDEO:
KEY to this video: 2:17
Where to buy a foam roller: 4:35
How to roll your Tensor Fasciae Latae: 5:44
How to roll your Glutes: 6:28
How to roll your Quad: 6:59
How to roll your Hamstring: 7:39
Jared’s BONUS IT Band stretch: 8:22
Be sure to SUBSCRIBE, LIKE, and COMMENT on the video while watching!
Now here’s the other important part – it’s one thing to treat the symptoms of IT band syndrome by performing these foam roller exercises. It’s quite another to treat the actual CAUSE of the tension so that the pain doesn’t return!
You need to supplement your foam rolling with the right stretches and exercises to promote relaxation, elongation, and strengthening in these muscles to keep the pain away. In this video I’ve demonstrated my favorite IT band stretch to help address tension after you’ve foam rolled.
OTHER KNEE PAIN VIDEOS YOU MAY FIND HELPFUL:
PATELLOFEMORAL (KNEECAP) PAIN TREATMENT:
BEST STRETCHES AND EXERCISES FOR KNEE PAIN:
Make it happen,