The following exercises form part of our Iliotibial Band Syndrome rehab program and include stretching and strengthening exercises which are important for this program.
Exercises to stretch the tensor fascia latae muscle and strengthen the gluteals are important:
Tensor fascia latae stretch
Sit on the floor with one leg out straight. The leg to be stretched is bent and the foot is placed on the outside of the other knee as shown. Use your hands to apply pressure as if trying to pull the bent knee across the other one.
Gluteal muscle stretch
On your back cross your right ankle over the left knee and grip the thigh of your left leg and pull the knee towards you. Lifting your foot off the floor, pull the knee further towards you to increase the stretch.
Hip flexor stretch
Kneel with one knee on the floor and the other foot in front with the knee bent. Push your hips forward and keep the back upright.
Clam in extension
Performing the clam exercise with your knees moved further back places your hips into extension.
Lie on your back with your arms flat out to the side, keep your legs together and bend your knees. Lower your knees to one side as far as you can go without raising your back and then repeat to the other side.
Strengthening exercises for the muscles on the outside of the hip that abduct the leg will help prevent the knee from turning inwards when running or walking and therefore help reduce the friction on the ITB tendon at the knee.
In particular, strengthening exercises for the tensor fascia latae muscle and gluteus medius, such as heel drops, clam exercise, and hip abduction is important.
The glute band squat exercise is a squat with a resistance band placed around the knee. The band helps work the muscles on the outside of the hip more.
Single-leg wall squat
Stand next to a wall with a gym ball between you and the wall. Perform a quarter squat on one leg using the ball for support.
Place a resistance band around your knees to increase the load on your lateral hip muscles. Walk forward and backwards, maintaining a good posture by keeping your head and chest up.
Place the balls of your feet on the floor and push up onto your tiptoes, and slowly drop down as far as comfortable.
Bending at the knee, begin to squat down on one leg, extending your non-working leg out in front of your body. Lower yourself down to the bench and repeat.