Runner’s World states that Iliotibial Band Syndrome (ITBS) is one of the most common overuse injuries among runners. It occurs when the iliotibial band, the ligament that runs down the outside of the thigh from the hip to the shin, is tight or inflamed. The IT band attaches to the knee and helps stabilize and move the joint. When the IT band isn’t working properly, movement of the knee (and, therefore, running) becomes painful. IT band pain can be severe enough to completely sideline a runner for weeks, or even longer.
I have seen many of my running buddies struggle with ITBS, which is caused by “activity that causes the leg to turn inward repeatedly. This can include wearing worn-out shoes, running downhill or on banked surfaces, running too many track workouts in the same direction, or simply running too many miles. <runnersworld.com>
Treatment of ITBS is to rest it by reducing your miles or cutting out running altogether. Personally, I feel that giving the ITB a really good stretch after runs is a good way to help prevent ITBS. Below is a video created by Dr. Geoffrey Alan Gray of what he calls the “World’s Best IT Band Stretch.” I’ve seen several different stretches for the ITB, but never this one. Let me know what you think!