Over the past two decades, therapists and athletic trainers have been using kinesiology tape more and more to aid their patients. Dr. Kenzo Kase, a Japanese chiropractor, licensed acupuncturist, and moxibustion therapist invented kinesiology tape as a way to extend the benefits of manual therapy between sessions.
Kinesiology tape is made of 100% cotton elastic and is latex free. The structure of the tape allows range of motion and support simultaneously. The wave-like pattern in the tape is meant to mimic the pressure of finger tips on the skin and body tissues underneath it. The pattern also allows the tape to breathe. When applying the tape, realize that it only stretches on the longitudinal axis. The tape’s adhesive is strong yet hypoallergenic. When properly used, it can be used for a wide variety of ailments.
Here are three simple but helpful techniques for you to try yourself:
1. For Alignment: Kinesiology tape is quite useful to help you align body parts and encourage correct posture. Check out thisvideofor one method. Place the tape across the shoulder blades to reduce slouching.
2. For pain: Kinesiology tape is well-known to help decrease the amount pain you’re in. If you have lower back pain, this video shows a reliable method to tape and off-load the pain.
3. For Bruising: Taping is also successful in cases of bruising. The taping is thought to lift the skin, increasing the space beneath it and allowing increased blood flow to the area which ultimately speeds the absorption of a bruise.
Cut down the length of the kinesiology tape, but leave it connected at the end in a 2-inch anchor. This is known as a fan strip. The bruised limb or area of the body should be stretched. Position the strip so that the anchor is where you want the swelling to drain. The fingerlike strips are stretched and taped over the swelling, bruised area. When the limb or area of the body is returned to a neutral position, the tape will cause the skin to lift and pull towards the anchor.
Kinesiology tape can last 3-5 days, even after getting wet, so one application can have a significant impact. Be aware many kinesiology taping techniques require the help of another person for correct placement. You may want to seek professional help from a physical therapist, or athletic trainer, for taping tips specific to your injury. Once you learn the correct method, you can continue to use kinesiology tape yourself.
Mueller kinesiology tapecomes in several colors and the rolls over 16 feet allowing you to be versatile in your taping. Our products are part of our long-term commitment to help athletes stay in the game, and help them perform at their peak.