What is Iliotibial Band (ITB) Syndrome?
Also known as “IT Band Syndrome” also known as “ITB Syndrome,” iliotibial band syndrome is a painful medical condition that affects the lateral hip, leg, and knee. It can affect individuals of all ages and most often is caused by repetitive activities like running, cycling, hiking, and walking.
Your iliotibial band is a thick band of connective tissue that runs from the outside of your hip down to the outside aspect of your knee. Its principal function is to stabilize the hip and knee. If it becomes tight and dysfunctional, you may experience pain along with this band of tissue due to strain or inflammation. You may also experience pain, limited range of motion in the outside aspect of the hip and knee.
What Causes IT Band Syndrome?
Iliotibial band syndrome is a common issue for those who perform repetitive motions, such as running or cycling. When your body becomes accustomed to this kind of movement and you don’t allow it time to recover between sessions with these activities – the tight IT bands can cause rubbing which leads, in turn, towards pain and swelling.
Some risk factors may make some individuals more prone to experience IT Band Syndrome. Those include:
- Prior injury that makes the ITB tighter
- weak hip, gluteal, abdominal muscles
- Running uphill or on a track
- Lack of flexibility
- Flat feet
- Too much sitting
- Weak knee flexors and hip abductors
- Knee osteoarthritis
- Lumbar disc disease
Symptoms for Iliotibial Band Syndrome
Pain in the outer side of your knee is a common complaint among athletes. As people get older, they’re more likely to experience this type of discomfort as they move around during exercise and physical activity- whether it’s walking upstairs or running cross country. Other symptoms include pain on the outside of the hip and leg and clicking and popping of the outside of the knee.