Richard Husseiny, our Sports Therapist, has been with Coast since the first day we opened. In that time he has completed a BSc (Hons) Sports Therapy, LSSM Dip and MSST and is currently on the home run of his MSc in Strength and Conditioning.

Richard has worked with focused determination to achieve his goal of training professional athletes and all that hard work has paid off because he has been taken on as the Strength and Conditioning Trainer of the Olympic diving team. Way to go Rich!  We are really happy for you.

 

Rich has written this months blog on an injury that many runners suffer with, unnecessarily, Iliotibial Band Syndrome.

 

 

Iliotibial Band Syndrome           

The marathon season is fast approaching, with 2 of the UK’s most popular marathons close by. If you are running either the Brighton or London marathon this year, you should be well into you’re training and hitting double figure distances. Having miles under your belt is the key to successful marathon running. Yes, interval training will enhance your aerobic condition and improve your ability to run at a higher VO2%, but running economy is optimally enhanced by the volume of miles that you do.

 

The nature of distance running, and that of cycling, means that the linear, repetitive stride pattern can cause overuse injuries very quickly, if you fail to look after your body. Stretching AND a well-structured strength plan are essential for better performance and optimal tissue quality. Without this in place, common injuries can occur such as ITB syndrome.

 

Iliotibial Band Syndrome

 

 What is the ITB?

 The Iliotibial band (ITB) is a superficial thickening of tissue. It attaches from the TFL (tensor fascia latae) and the butt (gluteus maximus) muscles; tracks down the outside of the thigh and inserts just below the knee. The ITB is therefore involved with the running stride (flexion and extension of the hip) and also acts to stabilize the knee.  ITB Syndrome arises with the repetitive rubbing of the ITB over a bony part of the knee called the lateral femoral epicondyle, causing inflammation and resulting in pain.

 

Symptoms

 Symptoms range from a dull to sharp pain in areas around the knee, which can spread up the length of the lateral thigh to the hip area. This may not occur until mid way or even after your run. It may be fine on the flat but could swiftly increase with hill runs due to exaggerated hip flexion. This is not an injury that suddenly occurs; without doubt it is due to increased muscle stiffness and the repetitive load when increasing mileage.

 

Treatment

 Symptoms may subside with total rest, but that isn’t going to get you prepared to run. This is where we can help at Coast Clinic. The following 3 aspects of treatment we offer are key:

 

1)      Soft tissue therapy

2)      Flexibility training

3)      Well structured strength plan

 

 1)      Soft tissue work will release the tense musculature, release the myofascia and help the ITB run smoothly over the thigh muscles. It will also reduce any scarring that has built up in the tissues and release muscle tension through the whole area. This then buys you time to work on developing your own flexibility.

 

2)      Daily stretching and foam rolling is essential when training for a marathon. This will maintain and develop the improved tissue quality achieved through soft tissue manipulation. This must be kept up, foam rolling is a great way to prepare for any physical exercise both before and after.

 

 

3)      Strength work is also vital to performance. Muscle imbalances are very common, and can cause problems such as ITB syndrome. The very nature of marathon running is highly repetitive, which quickly highlights weak musculature. If a butt muscle (e.g. gluteus medius – which is an important hip stabilizer) is weak on one side, the hip range of movement, stability and function can quickly become compromised. Therefore, identifying any weaknesses and prescribing specific strengthening exercises are very important. Further benefits to strength work include improved muscle strength, joint stiffness (different to musculature stiffness) and tissue quality, lead to further improvements to performance and injury prevention.

 

We offer all these services at Coast (and we carry foam rollers). We can enable you to prepare and compete at any level from amateur races to the Olympic Games.

Written by Richard Husseiny, Sports Therapist.

Richard has his own blog. If you would like to follow him you can find him at  http://richardhusseiny.blogspot.com

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