So what is kinesiology tape?
Kinesiology tape is a relatively new, but effective strategy of injury and performance management. It used by health Practitioners such as osteopaths, physiotherapists and sports doctors across the world and can regularly be seen strapped to arms, legs and torsos of some of the world’s top professional athletes. The tape is designed to resemble the thickness and elasticity of human skin as closely as possibly which allows it to be worn without binding, constricting or restricting range of movement – perfect for athletic performance!
What does kinesiology tape do?
Flamboyantly coloured and often in a decorative, but precise pattern, the tape sub-serves many beneficial functions: In theory, when applied professionally and accurately, kinesiology tape can work in number of ways to provide pain relief, enhance athletic performance, reduce inflammation, assist in increasing range of movement and provide structural support.
How does it work?
Kinesiology tape is often applied directly to the areas of dysfunction or pain with variable degrees of stretch; the elastic nature of the tape allows a recoil effect to occur which lifts the skin and fascia away from the underlying tissues, and therefore decompressing the muscles, nerves and vessels below.
When a soft tissue structure, such as a joint, ligament or muscles is damaged the area becomes inflamed. This inflammation increases pressure between the adjacent surfaces and reduces the amount of movement available. The recoil effect of Kinesiology tape increases the space between the skin and underlying tissues, which reduces friction and relaxes the muscle to allow a greater degree of movement to occur
By increasing the space between inflamed muscle, fascia and skin, we decrease pressure being applied to ‘pain sensitive fibres’, this reduces nociceptive feedback (messages to the brain signalling pain) from the damaged area and therefore, we experience less discomfort
Inflammation & Blood supply
Lifting of skin and fascia away from the muscle increases the amount of space for lymphatic and blood flow. The decompression of these vessels can improve blood supply to the area to promote healing and can significantly speed up the drainage of inflammation (local bruising/swelling).
Is Kinesiology tape only used for athletes?
Despite this common association with athletic performance or injury, kinesiology tape is frequently used as a therapeutic aid for many musculoskeletal conditions. At The Osteo Practice, the use of kinesiology tape has benefited patients of all ages and background. We typically use it for pain management for the following..
- Pain relief for joint and muscle injury (back, shoulder, neck pain etc.)
- Muscle spasm/tension (i.e. pulled hamstring)
- Post-surgical rehabilitation
- Lymphatic and circulatory assistance (i.e. peripheral oedema)
- Poor joint positioning
- Postural or muscular imbalance (i.e. pregnancy
kinesiology taping at The Osteo Practice
At the Osteo practice kinesiology taping is just one the services we provide. Our main aim is always to deliver our patients with speedy and cost effective recoveries, so if we feel that you would benefit from the application of kinesiology tape, we include as part of the treatment free of charge!