by Hayley Chemski-Horwat, MSN, CNRA
Building Bodeez is located at 154 Pandora Road in Derry Township. 724-739-0105. www.building bodeez.net.
Set out for a run, possibly thinking about running a race or using running as a weight loss aide? About 1/2 mile into the run you experience intense pain that radiates on the outside of your knee, up the lower portion of your thigh into your hip. The pain nags at you and you are forced to stop your run and possibly running altogether.
Iliotibial band friction syndrome is a common cause of knee and hip pain in 7- 8% running athletes. The IT Band is a fibrous ligament that runs from the hip to the underside of the knee, helping the main muscle in the thigh (quadriceps) to maintain alignment during movement. Another name for this issue is Iliotibial Band Friction Syndrome (IBFS).
With a repetitive exercise, such as running, the IT Band is aggravated and possibly swells from overuse or improper use. The IT Band “shocks” you with pain when running down a hill, stepping down stairs, or even more so with sitting. You may sense a popping on the outer side of the knee during runs.
Some IT Band issues are aggravated not only by running but also from poorly placing feet on uneven surfaces (paved or unpaved roadways), having a short leg, tilted pelvis, or “bowed” legs.
Working with orthopedic specialists, namely renowned orthopedic surgeons in the operating room I have free reign to ask their opinion on sports injuries such as the IT Band syndrome. Per several surgeons working out of Pittsburgh, PA they recommend “R.I.C.E.” or rest, ice, compression, elevation. Physical Therapy is generally prescribed, reduction in activity, foam roller use, anti-inflammatory medications (i.e. Motrin, Aspirin, Tylenol, Celebrex, Mobic), and rest.
Specific stretches are prescribed and generally completed by personal trainers and aerobics trainers. Foam rollers are gaining popularity amongst athletes and fitness gurus to help to create muscle and connective tissue massage, and can be used daily.
Don’t give up on your running too soon. Check with your primary care physician regarding your symptoms, and above all else, LISTEN TO YOUR BODY’S CUES. Tension in the body is normal, pain is not. Zap the pesky IT Band Syndrome for a greater running experience.
Hayley is a Certified Fitness Trainer and the co-owner of Building Bodeez Fitness Center, located at 154 Pandora Rd in Derry, PA, as well as a full-time Nurse Anesthetist with the University of Pittsburgh Physicians, currently based at St. Margaret’s Hospital in Fox Chapel, PA. Hayley offers a wealth of fitness and health knowledge, serving as the Group Fitness Coordinator and Wellness Programs Director at Building Bodeez.