Massage & Bodywork

MAY | JUNE 2016

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110 m a s s a g e & b o d y w o r k m a y / j u n e 2 0 1 6 MYOFASCIAL TECHNIQUES variation of grasping, lifting, and gently shearing the iliotibial tract anteriorly and posteriorly. Whichever approach you use, take your time, working all around the lateral leg, from the hip all the way past the knee, keeping in mind that you are stimulating and refining the sensitivity of one our body's many important sensory structures. Notes 1. John Fairclough et al., "The Functional Anatomy of the Iliotibial Band During Flexion and Extension of the Knee: Implications for Understanding Iliotibial Band Syndrome," Journal of Anatomy 208, no. 3 (March 2006): 309–16. 2. M. P. van der Worp et al., "Iliotibial Band Syndrome in Runners: A Systematic Review," Sports Medicine 42, no. 11 (November 1, 2012): 969–92; J. Shamus and E. Shamus, "The Management of Iliotibial Band Syndrome with a Multifaceted Approach: A Double Case Report," International Journal of Sports Physical Therapy 10, no. 3 (June 2015): 378–90. 3. Paul Ingraham,, "Don't Stretch Your IT Band!," Accessed March 2016, www.painscience. com/articles/iliotibial-band-syndrome-stretch.php; Greg Lehman, "The Mechanical Case Against Foam Rolling Your IT Band. It Can Not Lengthen and It is NOT Tight," accessed March 2016, www.greglehman. ca/2012/03/17/stop-foam-rolling-your-it-band-it- can-not-lengthen-and-it-is-not-tight/; E. C. Falvey et al., "Iliotibial Band Syndrome: An Examination of the Evidence Behind a Number of Treatment Options," Scandinavian Journal of Medicine & Science in Sports 20, no. 4 (August 2010): 580–7. 4. H. Chaudhry et al., "Three-Dimensional Mathematical Model for Deformation of Human Fasciae in Manual Therapy," Journal of the American Osteopathic Association 108, no. 8 (August 2008): 379–90. 5. Carl Valle,, "Foam Rolling— Evidence Based Results?" accessed March 2016, 6. Robert Schleip, "Fascial Plasticity—A New Neurobiological Explanation," Journal of Bodywork and Movement Therapies 7, no. 1 (January 2003): 11–19; L. Yahia et al., "Sensory Innervation of Human Thoracolumbar Fascia," Acta Orthopaedica Scandinavica 63, no. 2 (April 1992): 195–97. Watch Til Luchau's technique videos and read his past articles in Massage & Bodywork's digital edition, available at,, and on's Facebook page. 7. John Fairclough et al., "Is Iliotibial Band Syndrome Really a Friction Syndrome?," Journal of Science & Medicine in Sport 10, no. 2 (April 2007): 74–6; discussion 77–8. 8. Frankie M. Griffin, Giles R. Scuderi, and John N. Insall, "Lateral Release for Fixed-Valgus Deformity," in Knee Arthroplasty Handbook, eds. Giles R. Scuderi and Alfred J. Tria, Jr. (New York, New York: Springer, 2006): 41–56. Til Luchau is a Certified Advanced Rolfer, the author of Advanced Myofascial Techniques (Handspring Publishing, 2016) and a member of the faculty, which offers distance learning and in-person seminars throughout North America and abroad. Contact him via and's Facebook page. "Iliotibial Tract Technique" Key Points: Iliotibial Tract Technique Indications • Restricted hip adduction • Hip pain in side-lying positions (sometimes related to greater trochanter bursa irritation) • Local pain after direct trauma and injury to the lateral leg • Knee injuries (the ITB can be damaged along with the lateral collateral ligaments and other structures of the knee) • Knee strain and misalignment, particularly valgus (knock-knee) patterns (the iliotibial tract is sometimes cut by surgeons as a treatment for genu valgum) 8 • Iliotibial band syndrome (ITBS) Purpose • Refine proprioceptive and sensory function of the fascia lata, ITB, and lateral leg • Increase tissue elasticity and differentiation Instructions (Described in the text) Movements • Active knee or hip flexion Homework • Relaxing onto a foam roller under the ITB, with attention to sensation, breath, and relaxation • One-legged balance activities, with awareness of ITB sensation and function For More Learning • "Pelvis, Hip & Sacrum, Parts I & II" and "Knee Issues, Part I" in the Advanced Myofascial Techniques series of workshops and video courses In the Iliotibial Tract Technique, the practitioner uses a slow, patient, and gentle touch to increase tissue layer differentiation and refine proprioceptive acuity. Image courtesy 5

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