Health And Injuries

How To Beat Runner’s Knee

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Illiotibial band syndrome (ITBS) is a very common running injury, yet very few people understand it. The Illiotibial band can be explained as a thick piece of connective tissue which runs parallel to one’s femur from the hip to the knee attaching along the tensor fasciase latenae and the gluteus maximus on one side of the hip and makes a connection with the tibia lateral side. Its work is stabilizing the knee when one is running. IT Band Syndrome is the condition that causes pain at the point of insertion of the IT band on the outer side of the knee.


IT Band Syndrome is caused by abnormal femur movements caused by a weak butt. The medius and gluteus maximus are major muscles responsible for the control of the pelvis position and the general stability on one’s leg when one engages in a running stride. If one’s hips are weak, they cause pelvic “dropping” down on the non-stance leg. When one’s pelvis moves into a position that is not favorable, the IT band pulls away from the knee. Abnormal and excessive movement of the pelvis is what causes IBTS and must be controlled. In the following list are some exercises discussed for the best treatment of the IT Band Syndrome:

1. Hip Thrust

This exercise is carried out as one lies on his back while shifting his weight on his upper back in between the shoulder blades and the feet. Your hands can be kept on the side of your body or can be crossed over the chest. You should then lower your butt almost to the ground and do an up thrust while activating your glutes and ensuring that your heels are diving into the ground. One can also use a more advanced method called the Single Leg Hip Thrust. This is normally done by lifting one of your legs to send all your body weight to the other leg and your back. The same process should be repeated 20-30 times.

2. Clam Shell

This is yet another simple exercise that is performed while one lies on his side, putting both his knees and ankles together. The knees are supposed to be bent at about 90 degrees. By activating one’s upper glute muscles, one opens his legs ensuring that a neutral spine position is maintained while at the same time ensuring that your pelvis is not rocked. The motion should be kept controlled and slow throughout the exercising period. When one wants to venture into a more advanced version of the clamshell exercise, he can introduce a loop of rubber tubing that is placed around his thighs just above the knee. These moves need to be repeated 20-30 times.

3. Side Shuffle

This is performed with one’s knees slightly bent in a position like the one of a squatting person and taking ten steps on one side. In the same direction, ten more steps are taken back to the initial position to make a single set. In an advanced version of this exercise, one uses a loop of rubber tubing or a Thera-band around his ankles. To make it even more effective, the rubber should be tight enough to provide constant resistance as the person moves.

4. IT Band Foam Rolls

IT foam band rolls is performed while one lies down on his side and have a foam roll bilaterally past his hip and knees. One should expect to experience some pain if he is not rolling it out correctly. The procedure hurts, but will decrease one’s pain afterwards as the procedure releases the IT muscles after getting tight during exercise.

5. One legged Squats

For this exercise, an elevated box is required. The box is placed near an anchor of some sort or a pole. If you have a partner, it will even be easier and better to exercise. A larger Thera-band loop will be required and is placed around the knee one is planning to straighten the band is then tied to a pole and your partner holds the other end. While in this position, you should perform 1-legged squat on the step box while ensuring that your hip back, your back straight and your knee does not extend out in front of you.


These and other exercises should be useful in fixing your Illiotibial band syndrome (ITBS) and allowing you the opportunity to enjoy your exercise even more. If the five exercises should be carried out for 3 weeks with one day rest in between, they will solve the problem. Ensure that you do not hurt yourself more in the process of fixing the current problem.

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