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IT band: how tight tissue can cause hip and knee pain (and how to stretch it)

Writer: CHLOE GRAY | Outlet: Stylist

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Many of us are experiencing more aches and pains than ever before, no thanks to lockdown, working from home, and even upping our workout intensity. According to research by Nurofen, over a third of people have been complaining about an increase in backaches, 27% have experienced more joint pain, and nearly a quarter of us have been getting sore muscles

However, it isn’t just the muscles and joints we need to think about when it comes to discomfort in the body. Our tissue and fascia can also be tight as a result of our new lifestyles, and it’s important not to neglect one area in particular: the IT band. 



A tight IT band may feel stiff during movement or even sensitive to the touch. “You might only notice how tight it is when you’re exercising, such as feeling a constant burning pain in your thighs when running,” says Kerry.

But often, trouble with the IT band is projected in other areas of the body, particularly into the joints that it helps to connect. “It varies from person to person, but it often shows up as knee pain as the tissue runs underneath the knee cap. There can also be a lot of irritation that spreads from the top of the thigh to the hip,” Kerry explains.



“There are stretches and exercises that you can do to improve flexibility and strengthen the muscles around the IT band so that they absorb the impact of overuse rather than the tissue,” says Kerry.