IT Band Pain - Physio in the Park Tips


As much as it pains us to say it, the world doesn’t revolve around socks. We care about athletes performance and want you to get the best out of yourself. This means not only do we want to prevent blisters, but we want to help you prevent all sorts of injuries.

To achieve this, SockMine have collaborated with Madelaine Smith, Aka “Physio In The Park”, to help remedy some of the most common injuries in sport.

Madelaine has specialised in Musculoskeletal Physiotherapy for over a decade now, working in the NHS and for a number of different sectors and companies. Coming from a sprinting back ground, Madelaine now trains and competes in triathlons across the country. In addition, Madeline is also the leading physiotherapist to the Bryan Steel Cycling Academy. It is fair to say, Madelaine knows what she is talking about!

To learn how to help rehabilitate your IT Band injury, read on or watch the video below featuring Madelaine.



The Iliotibial Band is a thick strong band of tissue on the outside of the leg, running from the hip to the outside of the knee. It can tolerate large amounts of forces provided that it is challenged regularly through exercise however can become painful and rarely improves with rest.

Historically, it was perceived that Iliotibial Band Syndrom (ITBS) is similar to tendinitis and when too tight, rubs over the bone at the side of the knee and becomes painful.   to be the result of an over loading problem. This means it has either been worked excessively or put too greater demand on the tendon. Current thinking is that it isn’t a tendonitis nor is the band too tight, but it is a result of the area not coping. Clearly then the aim is to get the area resilient, confidently accepting load in a variety of situations once again, therefore addressing the cause not just the symptoms.

Pain in the IT Band region can be treated in a number of ways. By doing anything and everything, but mainly by being confident that the area is not going to come to harm and to progressively challenge it regularly. Ensure that the exercise is at a level that is acceptable but also strainful, still allowing high quality, normal movement.




Here are a few exercises that you can do help to strengthen the IT Band. Make sure you fully warm up before attempting any of these exercises and know your limits! As long as you are challenging yourself at an acceptable level, don’t be concerned if you can only perform a few to begin with.



The great bit about this exercise is that you don’t need any equipment to perform it, just enough space for you to work out without worrying about bumping into things. In addition, it is a fantastic bit of cardio, perfect to include in any circuit training designed to get your heart pumping.

Start with your feet in a neutral position, about shoulder width apart. Leap out to your right and as you do, sweep your left leg behind you whilst bringing your left arm across your body. Then, leap to your left, sweeping your right leg across your body and brining your right arm across your body.

Continue to alternate between legs, building up speed as you do so for about 20 – 40 seconds. This is one set. Repeat this exercise 2 more times to complete the session.

An important point to note is to remember to control the movement. If done erratically, you risk over balancing and causing injuries. Build up the distance you leap as your strength progresses.



This is a great little exercise which improves co-ordination, balance and can strengthen the Petella Femoral. To do this, you will need some form of weight i.e. a dumbbell or kettlebell. When first attempting this exercise, start with a light weight to get used to the movement. Progression of this exercise is to gradually increase the weight, challenging the muscle to improve its capabilities.

Standing with your feet shoulder width apart, begin by holding the weight in your left hand and lifting your right foot off the floor behind you. Slowly bend your left leg, getting you knee as close to right angle as possible, before extending the leg once again. Perform 3 sets of 8 – 10 reps on each leg to complete the exercise.



The squat is a compound movement, designed to build strength throughout your body including both muscles and joints. We recommend using a medicine ball to add weight and increase the challenging aspect of this exercise.

Begin with your feet just wider than shoulder width, with them either pointing straight forward or just out slightly, depending on what is most comfortable. Then raise the medicine ball above your head with your arms fully extended.

Squat down until your bottom goes past level with your knees, keeping your chest up, head neutral and your knees behind your toes. Then burst back up in a controlled fashion, extending at the knees as you do so and keeping your back straight. Repeat this movement 8-10 times for 3 sets to complete the exercise.

Increase the difficulty of the exercise by increasing the weight of the medicine ball until it becomes challenging for you.



If you’re in the Nottinghamshire area and want a detailed assessment and diagnosis of your injury, you can email Madelaine at [email protected] or call on 01623 709710.

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