Iliotibial Band Syndrome and Running

Location of pain

Pain arises in the upper inner thigh muscle and involves the adductor muscle. This muscle runs along the inner thigh and allows your toes to turn thereby producing a balanced running stride.

Groin Strain Causes

This can occur due to over training and inadequate pre and post running stretching. Other causes include a sudden injury due to running on a slippery surface. Conditions such as over pronation and over supination result in a foot imbalance and cause the adductor muscle to tighten to maintain balance during the running stride.

Treatment of Groin Strain

Initial rest is imperative, we would recommend you cut back or even stop running altogether for at least a week. This can then be followed by mild stretching exercises for 7 days before you start running. The two main exercises to strengthen the adductor muscle is the groin stretch and the inside leg raise.



Groin Stretch

Sit with your feet together, your back straight, your head up, and your elbows on the inside of your knees. Then slowly push down on the inside of your knees with your elbows. You should feel the stretch along the inside of your thighs. Hold the stretch for 10 to 15 seconds. Repeat the stretch 6 to 8 times. This stretching exercise may be helpful for adductor strain (overstretching of the groin muscles).

Inside leg raise

Lie on your unaffected side, tighten the thigh muscle of your injured leg and then slowly raise the leg off the floor. Hold the leg up for a two count, and lower it on a four count. Relax your muscles. Then tighten the thigh and repeat. Do three sets of 10 repetitions each day. Once your leg gains strength, do the exercise with weights on your ankle. This strengthening exercise may be helpful for iliotibial band syndrome.

A heel raise or heel wedge (inner side of the heel) may help to increase the range of movement in the ankles and produce a more balanced running stride. We strongly recommend sports orthotics/ insoles to treat and prevent such a condition.