3 of the Best Stretches for the IT Band

3 of the Best Stretches for the IT Band


The iliotibial band -- better known as the IT band -- the ligament that runs down the outside of the thigh from the hip to the shin. It’s common for this area to become tight and cause hip and knee pain. The IT band is a particular annoyance of runners -- as the motion involved in running can make the IT band tighten up.


If you’re suffering from knee pain, there’s a good chance your IT band is too tight. To remedy the tightness of muscles, we have pulled together some of the best stretches for the IT band.

  1. Standing IT band stretch. This is a good, basic starter to stretch the IT band. Stand upright and cross your right foot over the left. Lean to the right (towards the front leg) until you feel a stretch. Breathe and hold for 30 seconds. Repeat on the other side.

  2. Lying IT band stretch. Lay on your left side, near the end of a bed or table, with the back facing the edge. Take the top (right) leg and let it fall backwards behind you. Hold for 30 seconds. Repeat on the other side.

  3. Belt/Strap IT band stretch. For this stretch you’ll need a belt, a yoga strap, or a long towel. Lay down on your back. Wrap the strap around the bottom of your right foot. Straight the leg, up towards the ceiling. Leave the other leg stretched out flat on the ground. With the strap, pull the right leg across the body until you feel a stretch on your outer thigh. Hold for 30 seconds. Repeat with the left leg.

Start with these three simple stretches to get your IT band loosened up. If you’re looking for something different or more varied, we can help! Contact us today to find out how we can customize a fitness plan for you.