Health & Nutrition Articles
Runner's Knee - Iliotibial band syndrome (ITBS)
How do I know if I may have Runner's Knee?
Pain and inflammation at the iliotibial band outside the knee.
Where is the iliotibial band?
The IT band is found along the side of the leg; from the hip down to the outside of the knee.
What can cause Runner's Knee?
- muscle imbalances
- an inflamed/irritated tendon
- abnormal gait
What is a tendon?
Tendons attach muscle to bone. The muscle anchors onto the tendon in order to produce force.
What is gait?
The manner of which the limbs move during walking, stepping, or running.
What helps to aid Runner's Knee?
- Exercising in different planes of motion.
- Core exercises
- Balance exercises
- Plyometrics exercises
- Speed Agility Quickness (SAQ)
- Resistance exercises
- Flexibility exercises specific to muscle imbalances; including the tensor fascia latae (TFL).
What defines the core?
The core can be thought of as a team in the center of your body that generates, stabilizes, and decelerates all movement. This team includes the lower back, obliques, abdominals, pelvis, and hip complex.
What are plyometrics?
Forceful movements generated over a short period of time. Decelerating muscular contractions are rapidly followed by accelerating muscular contractions. An example is jumping back and forth over an object. Confidence in core stability and balance is recommended before performing plyometrics and SAQ exercises.
What are muscle imbalances?
Muscle imbalances can be thought of as tightness and/or weakness resulting in poor posture, improper movement patterns, compensation, and risk of injury.
How is the TFL located?
The muscle acts as an internal hip flexor; so turn your foot inward. Then try placing your fingertips directly below the bone on your hip flexor. You should be able to identify the muscle with your fingertips as you rotate your toes inward and outward.
What flexibility exercises should I do?
Two types of flexibility exercises you can do are Myofascial Release and Static Stretching.
What is Myofascial Release?
Relaxing the connective tissue in and around tendons and muscles through light pressure; tolerable discomfort is a good rule of thumb.
What is Static Stretching?
Lengthens and gradually relaxes the muscle by holding upon initial tension for thirty seconds.