The IT band runs from the outside of your hip down to the outside of your knee. Sometimes, it can become inflamed and irritated, which causes it to rub on the bony processes of your knee. This condition is called IT band syndrome, and it can make running — and even walking — quite painful. IT band syndrome is common in runners and hikers, and it also appears in people who do repetitive leg motions for work. There are stretches and strengthening exercises you can do to help treat it, but another thing you may want to do is see a chiropractor for physical rehabilitation. Here's how they can help.
Adjusting the Spine
If your spine is out of alignment, especially in your lower back, then this can create tension down your upper legs. If the muscles in your upper legs tense up and tighten, they can put a strain on your IT band and make your pain worse. A chiropractor can adjust your spine, which should alleviate the tension through your lower back and upper legs. You may therefore notice an immediate reduction in pain after a chiropractic adjustment. And regular adjustments can be key to healing from IT band syndrome permanently.
Adjusting the Pelvis
It's also common for the legs to become misaligned within the pelvic girdle. This actually happens a lot to runners who run on cambered roads. Over time, running with one leg lower than the other can cause a misalignment in the pelvis. This puts strain on the hamstrings at the back of one leg, which in turn puts stress on the IT band. A chiropractor can adjust the pelvis and take the pressure off the hamstring and IT band, allowing for healing.
Another treatment a chiropractor may administer is called TENS, or Transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation. They'll place some electrodes over the muscles that are associated with your IT band. The electrodes will deliver mild electrical signals that cause your muscles to contract and relax, again and again. This can help reduce swelling and tension in the area, easing the strain on your IT band. You may get a few days of relief from TENS. It's a good short-term fix while you're waiting for the adjustments to take effect.
If IT band syndrome has been paining you, then make an appointment with a chiropractor. It's amazing what a couple of adjustments and some TENS sessions can do for this condition over time.