Tight IT Bands? Exercise to Fix Now!
What are Tight IT Bands?
The IT band (iliotibial band) is a tendenous band that extends from the outer hip down to the side of the knee. Intense exercise such as running or cycling can cause the iliotibial bands to become tight and inflamed. The tight IT bands syndrome results in swelling, pain along the outer side of the hips and knees, and tenderness in the knee. All these symptoms are a result of friction caused by the tight IT bands. The pain characteristically does not start right at the beginning of the exercise, hence runners will feel the pain after a few miles and perhaps when they wake up the next day after a long and vigorous running session. A severe case of tight bands syndrome may cause pain and discomfort simply by walking or performing an action as routine as walking up and down a flight of stairs.
Tight IT Bands: The Cure!
This painful condition can be cured by performing certain ITB band exercises that help to reduce the inflammation, pain and swelling associated with tight IT bands. The first few steps on the path of recovery and recuperation is simple stretching actions, allowing your body to rest, frequent icing and massaging of the affected knee. This article will discuss three highly effective stretching exercises to speed up the recovery process. The rest of the recuperation techniques can also be carried out at home. You can carry out self-massaging by using a massage stick or a foam roller, or you can enlist the services of a professional. The following easy-to-practice ITB band exercises will help to remedy this painful problem and have you back on your feet in no time.
ITB band exercises # 1
The first ITB band exercise is a simple stretching exercise. Position yourself in an upright, standing pose. Bring the affected leg behind the leg that is not in pain. Lean away from the sore leg until you are able to feel a stretch in the tight iliotibial band. Maintain the stretch for 30 seconds. Exit the pose by uncrossing your legs and assuming the original standing pose again. Repeat this gentle stretching exercise four times.
ITB band exercises # 2
The second ITB band exercise requires you to sit on the floor (or exercise mat) with your legs stretched straight out in front of you. Bend your knee and cross the sore leg over the leg that is not in pain. Your foot should be pressed flat against the floor. Now twist your torso and look over the shoulder on the sore side. Stretch until you can feel the stretching sensation in the tight iliotibial band. Maintain the stretch for 30 seconds. Repeat this stretching exercise four times.
ITB band exercises # 3
The third stretching exercise requires you to lie down on the floor (or exercise mat) on your back. Bend the knee of the sore leg. Use both hands to hold the knee and then pull it up gently towards the opposite shoulder. Maintain the stretch for 30 seconds. Lower your knee and bring it down to rest on the mat. Repeat this stretching exercise four times.