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Self Care Cupping to the IT Band

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Download a printable pdf file of this self-care technique here: 

Cupping Self-Care to the IT Band


This can be used for tightness or pain in the iliotibial band.


All work should be pain-free.

Start with light to moderate suction and move the cup slowly.


Rub some massage oil over the lateral side of your thigh.

Lift the outer lip of the cup and squeeze the air out when you place the cup over the IT band.

Rest your foot to the outside of your opposite knee so your IT band is stretched.

Slowly move the cup up and down the band.

If this is tolerated well then flex and extend your knee while moving the cup.

If there are painful areas you can rest the cup there and flex and extend your knee several times before moving the cup again.

This video shows ways of using a silicone massage cup to lift the IT band off of the underlying muscle (Vastus Lateralis of the Quadriceps group). This can be done by gliding the cup over the IT band while it is stretched. It can be even more effective if you flex and extend your knee while gliding the cup. The knee flexion and extension will engage and stretch the quadriceps while you are lifting the band off of it.


Silicone massage cups can be purchased at

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