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Thread: IT Band pain

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
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    Kelowna, BC, Canada
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    IT Band pain

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    A recent trip to the massage therapist confirmed that some of the pain I have been feeling in my hip and my knees is IT band pain. She said I have not been stretching enough after long rides (oops, so true...) I am doing some searching on the net to find more info about how to treat the current problem and prevent future pain. Does anyone here any specific knowledge or suggestions that may help me?

    Thanks,
    barb

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
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    Ohio
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    Oh I am sorry you are hurting. The only info I have on the topic is from running. Where you given any specific exercises to help correct the situation?
    Jennifer

    “Live as if you were to die tomorrow. Learn as if you were to live forever.”
    -Mahatma Gandhi

    "We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, therefore, is not an act but a habit."
    -Aristotle

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2001
    Location
    Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
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    719

    Stretching the IT

    The problem with stretching the IT, is that it is really very difficult to get a specific stretch for the IT. You can stretch all around it, but not really well on the IT.

    Using a foam roller and myofascial release is a great way to maintain looseness in the IT.

    of course making sure you stretch EVERY DAY is important as well! Flexibility is the one component of fitness that is lost after only a few days (strength and cardio can be maintained for a few weeks after stopping).

    Elite athletes will get stretched several times a day and some of them quite vigorously, just to get an idea...

    When you stretch a muscle, you are still using it, so it will naturally go back to its shortened state. its only with continued and regular stretching that you get good continued flexibility (and decreased pain)

    Flexibility is also the one thing that people leave out...think of it this way, 1 minute of stretching for every 10 minutes of exercise. that means a one hour ride should be with5 minutes of stretching AT THE END!

    Stretching before exercise has been shown NOT to improve performance in fact with some power efforts can inhibit performance

    Some food for thought!

    Smile

    Hannah
    "The greater the obstacle, the more glory in overcoming it."-Moliere

    "Our greatest weakness lies in giving up. The most certain way to succeed is always to try just one more time." -Thomas A. Edison



    Shorty's Adventure - Blog

  4. #4
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    Excellent advice.

    After my runs, I do a few minutes of cool down fast paced walking, then I spend about 20 minutes doing either yoga or pilates to stretch everything out.
    Jennifer

    “Live as if you were to die tomorrow. Learn as if you were to live forever.”
    -Mahatma Gandhi

    "We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, therefore, is not an act but a habit."
    -Aristotle

  5. #5
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    My coach gave me hard foam roller to "roll out" the muscles of my hip and i-band when it feels tight. It works! It's about six inches in diameter and pretty solid. I'm not sure what its called but I will find out when he gets back in town.

    There are also some stretches that help the hip and surrounding area, including the glutes. If your left leg is the one that's tight, sit on the floor with your knees bent in front of you. Bring your left knee down so the outside is flat to the ground. Your ankle should be flat also, and the knee joint should be bent around 90° in front of you. Extend your right leg straight behind you. You may have to hoist up with your hands to do this. When your leg is behind you, slowly lower yourself down in a sitting position. Now lean your upper body foward. You can really start to feel the stretch in your hips and glutes. Adjust your knee angle/lean direction until you stretch exactly where you need it.

    Another stretch I do is specifically for the i-band. Put your left hand on a desk or high bed. Bend your knees a bit, then extend your left leg behind you and as far past your right knee as possible. You should be moving your left leg laterally, not backwards. Keep the left leg straight, taut and the side of the foot against the floor. Slowly lower your body by bending your right knee and your left elbow. As you lower, your left foot will slide out farther. You will feel the pull of your iband as you do this.

    Do both of these enough to stretch, but not to the point where you feel knee pain. Hope this helps!

  6. #6
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    Thank you, thank you, thank you for the suggestions! I am interested in the roller thing since two people mentioned it. I wonder where I can buy one? I will check out the larger drugstores or maybe medical stores?

    I totally understand about stretching after working out and fully intend to do that from now on. In the meantime, I want to stretch every day so I'm thinking maybe I should ride my exercise bike gently for 5-10 minutes to warm up and then do some stretching? Maybe I'll pull out my yoga dvd's and start with them, adding in some of the specific IT stretches you have mentioned.

    Han-grrl - interesting stats - some things I did not know. Thank you.

    barb

  7. #7
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    Is this the kind of roller you mean? I see they come in 12" and 36" sizes.

    http://tinyurl.com/ymfd2j

  8. #8
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    Barb - yes, that's the one. Not only can it work on your i-band, but it's also good on the hammys and calves, too. I don't know if you'll need the 36", unless you plan on cutting it down and getting two out of it. Mine was cut down from a larger roller and it's only about 18" long, as I only use it for one leg at a time. I know some people use it lengthwise down their back, but I never got much out of that position.

  9. #9
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    I developed ITB Syndrome in 2004 after doing 3 centuries in just 5 weeks. I found some good stretches online. Here are some of them:

    http://www.lwcoaching.com/library/runnersguideitbs.htm
    http://www.runningtimes.com/rt/articles/?id=6099
    http://www.triathloncoach.net/itb_Stretches.htm

    You usually hear more about ITB Syndrome in runners, but it can definitely happen to cyclists too. I was instructed to lower my saddle slightly and to avoid hills for a few weeks, as well as long distances. I did that, gradually easing back into riding, and hills, and after about a month, it never gave me another problem. I still do some of the stretches to this day. Googling on "ITB Syndrome" will give you all the information you could ever ask for and more!

    Good luck!
    Emily
    Emily

    2011 Jamis Dakar XC "Toto" - Selle Italia Ldy Gel Flow
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  10. #10
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    Mar 2006
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    Rochester, NY
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    I find that even more effective than the foam roller is a simple tennis ball. While laying on my side I put the tennis ball underneath the bottom leg and find tight spots by pressing my body (leg) weight into the ball, working my way from knee to hip and back again. It frees the knots/tightness quite thoroughly.
    -Emily

  11. #11
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    Aug 2001
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    Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
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    stretch after exercise

    If you are doing any kind of full workout, stretching should be done after you are done.


    Quote Originally Posted by kelownagirl View Post
    Thank you, thank you, thank you for the suggestions! I am interested in the roller thing since two people mentioned it. I wonder where I can buy one? I will check out the larger drugstores or maybe medical stores?

    I totally understand about stretching after working out and fully intend to do that from now on. In the meantime, I want to stretch every day so I'm thinking maybe I should ride my exercise bike gently for 5-10 minutes to warm up and then do some stretching? Maybe I'll pull out my yoga dvd's and start with them, adding in some of the specific IT stretches you have mentioned.

    Han-grrl - interesting stats - some things I did not know. Thank you.

    barb
    "The greater the obstacle, the more glory in overcoming it."-Moliere

    "Our greatest weakness lies in giving up. The most certain way to succeed is always to try just one more time." -Thomas A. Edison



    Shorty's Adventure - Blog

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Location
    Seattle
    Posts
    119

    substitute for foam roller

    There is another alternative to purchasing a foam roller that works quite well: using athletic tape, attach two tennis balls together by wrapping the tape sort of in a "figure-8" shape. I had a persistent case of ITB inflammation for about a year and a half, and this was what my PT recommended for massaging out the band. It works just like the roller does, but it's cheaper and more portable.

    Good luck, and be persistent! Sometimes it takes a little patience while waiting for it to heal.

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Location
    Chapel Hill, NC
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    I have been having IT band pain (I think . . . outside of my knee) from running for a while now. It's frustrating, like all inflammation, because just when you think it's gone, it can come back. Anyway, I've found various stretches online but I particularly liked the ones here, which have illustrations: http://www.howtostretch.com/iliotibi.htm

    I've also tried using ice after a painful run. I wish I could tell you a cure, but my pain keeps coming back! The key seems to be ramping up my distance sloooowly if I've had more than a couple days off from running.

  14. #14
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    Kelowna, BC, Canada
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    Thanks Tiger and EBD! Great stretches link - I'm going to try them - and good suggestion about the balls. I have used tennis balls for upperback pain before too.

    Here's how I made a home made roller today after I checked out about 6 different stores and couldn't find one to buy (and lots of blank looks when I tried to explain what it was.).

    I was at the hardware store and bought a tube of foam pipe covering that's about 2-3 inches across, cut it to about 12 inches long, and stuffed the centre hole with some fabric (a tea towel actually) to give it more stability. Cost me under a dollar and works great!

    Here's a pic except the tube I bought was for a bigger pipe so the inside hole was about 2" across.
    Last edited by kelownagirl; 04-19-2008 at 10:03 AM.

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    around Seattle, WA
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    Gee, it's good to know I'm not the only one. Thank you EBD for the links with photos, I was having trouble visualizing some of the stretches.

    One other think I've found - avoid heels. For some reason, wearing anything but flats REALLY aggrivates my ITB. Probably torking my ankles/knees/hips.
    Beth

 

 

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