Self-Myofascial Release I.T. Band

by Anthony Carey, MA

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Self-myofascial release for the IT band, or iliotibial band, is an important part of any flexibility program. The IT band is one of our thickest sheets of fascia that we have in our body. It starts up by the glutes and tensor fascia latae on the outer hip and goes all the way down and actually crosses the knee joint. It is a very influential soft tissue structure as it relates to the hip and the knee. Start up around your hip at the attachment point and progressively work your way down the knee, keeping the lateral aspect of your thigh and hip always perpendicular to the floor. Your bottom leg that's being addressed has the knee straight and that leg is in line with the hip and the torso, so your hip isn't flexed at all. You will progressively work your way down to the knee, finding those tender points for 20 to 30 seconds or until there's about a 50% reduction in sensitivity. If you want to increase the sensitivity and progress the exercise, you can use something like a tennis ball that will put a greater amount of force over a smaller area and make this self-myofascial release technique more intense. If you want to dissipate the force a little bit more and spread it out, you can use something that's a little broader and softer like a medicine ball.

About the Presenter

Anthony Carey, MA

Anthony Carey, MA IDEA Author/Presenter

Anthony Carey, MA, owns Function First in San Diego, California. He holds a master?s degree in biomechanics and athletic training, and is an internationally-recognized speaker on biomechanics, posture, motor control and musculoskeletal pain and function. As a best-selling author, his work has been featured in the New York Times and Time Magazine. Anthony is also the inventor of the Core-Tex.