Benefits of Kinesiology Taping
What is Kinesiology Tape?
Kinesiolgy taping is being used by professional athletes everywhere. Have you noticed colored tape on athletes during the Olympics, on tv, or in the gym and wondered, “why are they wearing that tape?”
Kinesiology tape, or “kinesio tape” is made from fine, stretchable, and breathable material with a similar thickness and elasticity to the outer layer of skin. It uses a sweat and waterproof adhesive that can be worn for 3 to 5 days, even with workouts and showers. It has been around since the 1970s, invented by Japanese chiropractor Kenzo Kase.
How does Kinesiology Taping work?
The main goals of kinesiology taping are improving circulation, supporting muscles, fostering healing, and helping prevent injury or further injury. Using principles of kinesiology, it works by focusing on the relationship and communication between muscles, tendons, connective tissues, and joints. Trained practitioners strategically place strips of tape to naturally restore balance and proper function around injuries, weakened and imbalanced muscles, or joints. The method maintains support to an injury by lightly adhering to skin and applying pressure to the area. At the same time, it allows blood and other fluids to freely move around the affected area. By allowing connective tissues around the injury to move with the body, blood and lymphatic fluid can better cleanse and heal inflammation without medication or surgery.
What is Kinesiology Taping Used for?
Soft tissue injury and pain at any age may benefit from kinesio taping. This can be a result of an injury or overuse in a strenuous job, sport, or hobby. Taping can also be effective for addressing some types of joint pain. Think of back strain, sprains, tennis elbow, carpal tunnel, shin splints, shoulder issues and more. Athletes also use kinesio taping for improved performance. Areas commonly taped include calves, shins, knees, hamstrings, backs, shoulders, elbows, and wrists.
Benefits of Kinesio Taping
Now that you understand the goals and method of kinesiology taping, we will check out the benefits:
- Reduced Pain: Gently applied pressure of kinesiology tape helps to disrupt and dissipate pain.
- Decreased Inflammation & Improved Circulation: Lifting the skin and other soft tissues allows fluid to clear and flush from the area.
- Improved Body Awareness: Proprioception is the ability to detect the body’s position and movement. Taping can improve communication between connected tissues and encourage proper movement and proprioception. It does not stop a movement like a brace, but creates awareness, guides and reinforces correct motor patterns. Training the body to become more independent and efficient this way has major impact on healing, posture, injury prevention, and athletic performance.
- Prevents Fatigue and Injury: Fatigue is one of the strongest predictors of injury. Applying tape to weakened and synergistic muscles (muscles that work together to create motion), we can support the muscle and reduce fatigue.
- Promotes the Body’s Self-Healing Process: All these things add up to holistically stimulating, supporting, and speeding your body’s innate ability to heal and prevent injury.