Iliotibial Band Syndrome (ITB Syndrome)/Iliotibial Band Friction Syndrome (ITBFS) is considered to be one of the most common overuse injuries in the lower part of the body, affecting anywhere from 7‐14% of the running population. Not only does it affect runners, but it can decrease performance in cyclists, soccer players, hockey players, basketball players, and rowers.
It has been suggested that ITB is often caused by poor biomechanics of the lower leg. It is usually seen (but not limited to) in runners whose knees collapse inwards when stepping forward. Now, this is obviously a very generic outlook as there are cases where people have ‘perfect’ running form and get ITB pain and those who have imperfect running form and have never experienced pain.
Our Approach to Care
What is key though is that your healthcare professional is able to carry out a full assessment and limit down the possible causation factors. As you can see from above, there is not always a straight and simple cause of this injury, instead it is overcome using a multi-disciplinary approach which uses a wide range of modalities to address the issue.
One of those commonly seen is the use of foam rolling. Why not check out our blog here to see the true effects of foam rolling and its effect on the ITB.
Abnormal kinematics of the lower extremity have also been suggested as a contributing factor to ITBS. Multiple authors have studied the hip, knee, and ankle kinematics in runners with and without ITBS and found conflicting results.7,8 Noehren et al studied competitive female runners with a history of ITBS and found that they had increased hip internal rotation and adduction range of motion upon contact.8 Grau et al found that hip adduction at initial contact and maximal hip adduction in the control group were significantly less than in the group with ITBS.