If you are not a runner or involved in sport then you may have seen some sort of taping applications on TV at the recent Olympic Games. This type of taping is called Kinesio tape application method. So what is Kinesio tape and what is it used for?
Kinesio tape, kt tape, kinesio taping, taping, athletes tape and athletes taping are some of the variations of names used to describe this type of tape.
The story behind Kinesio tape began in Japan. Dr. Kenzo Kase first developed the Kinesio taping method in 1979. He is a chiropractor as well as a licensed acupuncturist and moxibustion therapist. Dr. Kase realized that manual therapy (i.e. massage therapy, chiropractic care, and physical therapy) were extremely effective for treatment of different ailments, but often the effects were temporary. He wanted something for his clients to use between appointment sessions to increase efficacy of manual therapy for lasting results. The Kinesio taping method was introduced to the United States in 1995 and then Europe in 1996. So it may surprise you to know that the Kinesio taping method and Kinesio tape have been around for over a decade, but it has only been recently more well-known due to media coverage and amateur athletes adopting it.
So what does Kinesio tape do and what ailments does it cover? Kinesio tape, if properly applied, can be used for virtually anything from chronic pain to menstrual cramps. For my purposes, I will specifically talk about athletes and tape usage.
Kinesio tape can be a huge asset for athletes. Kinesio tape can be applied in the middle of workouts or in case of sudden injury. Kinesio tape is extremely strong and can be applied with different tension strengths. Different tension strengths and techniques can be used to allow the muscles and ligaments to have “help” when injury occurs. The tape essentially stabilizes an area, for example the knee, to prevent any further damage.
The great thing about Kinesio tape is that it still allows for range of motion, just not so much that you are likely to injure yourself further or re-injure yourself. Kinesio tape can help to stabilize an injury just like a band aid etc but it cannot cure the cause of injury and so you should always consult a physician, RMT or similar health practitioner.
For rehab Kinesio tape can be a great tool for athletes. Many times athletes experience that after a competitive event their body is exhausted or broken, or it may be that a non-competitive athlete has overtrained, but in either case rehab is needed. Manual manipulation is important to rehabilitation.
Using Kinesio tape after a manual manipulation session can increase efficacy of your treatment more so than without Kinesio tape. The tape can help open up fascial tissue to make manual manipulation easier. It helps athletes after manual manipulation in that it gives a continuous amount of stabilization to the affected area and gives muscles and ligaments a chance to rebuild and restore by taking the pressure off of those areas that have been worked on manually.
Kinesio taping method also helps with alignment. If you have a tendency to slouch or have an area of the body that is not properly aligned, Kinesio tape can bring the body back into alignment and help an athlete sense how this feels in the body. Having correct alignment can decrease pain and help the joints recover from activities.
In respect to pain, Kinesio tape also decreases pain in certain areas of the body that may be bothersome. Most athletes tend to have lower back pain. After manual manipulation, Kinesio tape can be placed on the affected area (using a different method or style of taping depending on the area) to decrease pain and discomfort. If there is bruising or swelling, there is a taping method that helps drain fluids into the lymphatic ducts to decrease swelling and help rid the body of bruising.
One more area that may interest athletes is that Kinesio tape can be used before a sporting event. Most athletes tend to know if they have rolling ankles or patellar tracking issues; just to name a few ailments that Kinesio tape can be put on the affected area to prevent injuries if the athlete plans to do an event. Using Kinesio tape before an event can save the athlete from future surgeries or ailments after the event itself.
Your body is important to your athletic career so take care of it by going to professionals such as massage therapists, physical therapists and chiropractors.
Just a brief overview now of Spidertech tape who is my sponsor for training and the coming years races. I had used a number of Kinesio tapes and then a friend recommended Spidertech tape as it is reasonably priced, affective and it sticks well. So I started using Spidertech Tape and loved it and approached them to sponsor me and now they are on board as one of my sponsors.
SpiderTech tm is innovative and easy-to-use elastic Kinesiology tape providing 100% drug free relief for all your minor aches and pains. Designed to provide the greatest variety of solutions for a myriad of different issues, in a clinical environment or in daily use, SpiderTech tm is the most complete range of quality therapeutic tape products.
SpiderTech tm supports the body’s natural physiology to deliver pain relief as well as provide support for joint instability, sprains and muscle strains. SpiderTech tm Kinesiology Tape provides support in three key areas: Pain Relief, Prevention of Further Injury & Performance Enhancement.