First Time With TFL Pain

Middle of the night I woke up with some intense pain right at the boney part of the hip (widest point). I assume it’s the TFL/IT band. I believe it is acting up simply because of some recent large efforts and an overall high ramp rate since I started training early January. That and obviously there is some muscle imbalance I need to work on. I’m stretching and rolling everything. My seat hight and fore/aft are where the fit placed them last year. Cleats are set where I have had them for years.

Those who have suffered with either TFL or IT pain, any tips or insight? Can you ride through it? Thanks

I had this last year out of the blue. It was excruciating so I empathise.

I found it was (for me) all linked to my glutes and how they interact with the IT band and the other muscles along the chain between my outer knee and my back / hip

Things I did which I believe led to it going away:

  • in the initial immediate day or two - fully rested from riding - but did other ‘movements’ (see below)
  • reduced riding intensity a fair bit after that for a week to simply spin and keep the legs moving
  • took mineral salt baths to relax the muscles, I found this beneficial but have heard others say it did nothing for them so take it as you find it
  • did small gentle physio movements to mobilise the hip joint and muscles in the aforementioned chain**
  • used voltarol gel to reduce the acute local inflammation at the hip joint
  • asked my girlfriend to gently massage the area above and below the sore point (upstream and downstream so to speak) - I now have a massage gun and would probably use that instead now if needed
  • I am not that keen on taking tablets but I did on the first day take some ibuprofen

** I’m not a physio so am reluctant to give ‘advice’ on this - I used exercises I found on line (Youtube) and also in a book I had at home (becoming a supple leopard; great book by the way) but essentially I used bands to do small side leg-lifts to activate the glutes (gently) and did mild static stretching a bit like yoga poses - also did deep slow no-weight squats (I think they may be called frog squats?) emphasis on gentle and repeatability - did these four or five times a day

Things I’ve done that (I believe) have kept it from returning:

  • maintained the use of bands to activate my glutes and hip muscles before EVERY ride, indoor or outdoor (this is the thing I have felt has made the biggest difference)
  • maintained (intermittently) the yoga / physio style movements when I remember to do them
  • become more conscious of my bike position and aimed to avoid slouching / become more aware of small pains or poor posture

Goes without saying that if it continues you should probably see a doctor or physio.

I hope this helps :+1:t2: Good luck :grin:

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