ITB Woes..

I know this problem has already been well debated, but I feel as if my physio has missed a few things.. so I need some help

Basically in training for my first Duathlon and the end of January this year, I had rapidly upped my volume of training with the purchase of an indoor cycle trainer and had started running (my main discipline is cycling but was planning exapnding to triathlon for the summer).

I started running in non-running trainers (Addidas Gazelles), which was an awful decision in hindsight. This is where I imagine the extra stress on my knees began. One day, during a heavy turbo interval session, I felt a sudden twang/sharp painful sensation raditing round the back of my right knee (possibly round the side too). The pain subsided and the next day there was no discomfort so I decided to go for a quick run (7:00 pace) in some actual running shoes (albeit slightly old). Halfway through the run the back of the knee went again.. I finished the run yet 30 mins after I'd finished I could barely walk. 

The motion of walking was far too painful for the right leg, making me have to twist my foot outwards and drag it behind me. Descending stairs was awful.

I went ahead with the Duathlon as the knee wasn't painful when cycling but I really don't think the two running legs helped at all.

I eventually got round to seeing a physio who diagnosed me with runners knee and a tight IT band.

I've been on a course of strengthening excercises for about a month and a half and foam rolling once or twice a day, 10 mins at a time, for about 3 months. I'm still cycling as it doesn't aggravate my IT band at all.

After scouring the net, I'm sure the strengthening excercises will help as my injured leg has lost a lot of muscle since the injury.

However, a really strange problem I've had all along is when seated, extending my leg to 180 degrees is always painful, especially around the back of the knee. I can feel my knee popping also when this happens. The pain does subside after repeating the extension - but is this sensation a symptom of runner's knee? I get exactly the same sensation when I try doing one legged squats, although this can be overcome by supporting myself on objects either side of me with my hands.

Also, I felt like I was making progress so went for a first run the other day.. 1.4 miles at a 7:10 pace. However I could feel the IT band flicking over the outside of the kneecap at every stride and in the hours/days that follwed the IT band feels tight again (no pain descending stairs or anything), but definitely a tightness with occasional stinging pain that puts me off from doing any more excercise.

So this is where I am at this point in time.. I apologise for the essay but I feel that injuries of the knee can be so complex, no info should be left out.

I really really want to get back to running but not even being able to run 2 miles after nearly 5 months of rest is extremely frustrating, so I hope you guys can help!




  • I had a bad itb problem and the strengthening, stretching and foam rolling has helped, but I also had acupuncture. After four weeks I was back on my feet. I'd been rolling, stregthening, stretching, but the acupuncture was the magic wand. A lot of the Mo Farah excercises in the latest copy of the magazine will help build up the muscles you need to prevent the injury coming back. Hope this helps.

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