is a therapeutic taping technique that offers the patient or athlete support while helping to rehabilitate the affected area as well. KINESIO taping works with the lymphatic system to increase ciculation of blood and lymph in order to rehabilitate and relieve pain. This technique uses a highly specific designed tape that works with the body allowing full range of motion (ROM). It does not adversely affect the biomechanics of the patient. This latex free product makes it hypoallergenic and safe to use from the pediatric to geriatric populations. No compression to the skin makes it “light to the feel” allowing comfortable wear over a 3-5 day period. The water resistant fabric wicks away moisture so the patient can still bathe. It can be used for virtually all clinical conditions.
Therapeutic kinesio tape can benefit a wide variety of musculoskeletal and sports injuries, plus inflammatory conditions. Kinesio tape is almost identical to human skin in both thickness and elasticity, which allows kinesio tape to be worn without binding, constricting or restriction of your movement.
You would have noticed that more an more professional athletes use kinesio taping to improve their sporting performance, prevent injury and allow them to return to sport quicker.
Benefits of Kinesio Taping
- Pain relief - kinesio tape can reduce pain by alleviating pressure on pain fibers and reduce swelling by increasing fluid movement.
- Reducing swelling - the wave pattern of the tape lifts the skin causing convolutions, it creates channels for the swelling to flow back to the heart, reducing swelling, pain and reducing the temperature of the inflamed area.
- Reducing scarring and assisting soft tissue repair - the elastic property of the tape along with the wave glue pattern pulls on the scar tissue giving continuous stretch, realigning the scar tissue, giving a softer, more malleable scar and reducing risk of re-injury. This is particularly beneficial in hamstring and calf tears which have a high recurrence rate.
- Facilitating or relaxing muscles - by manipulating the start and end position and by changing the amount of stretch on the tape, muscles can be 'turned on' or relaxed. This can promote better biomechanics and reduce pain in abnormal patterns of movement.
- Improving joint balance - the direction of pull and elastic property of kinesio tape allows the joint to be placed in the correct biomechanical position, allowing muscles to work in their best position. It balances the muscles acting around the joint, reduces muscle guarding and pain, enhances joint awareness and reduces painful stretch on ligaments and tendons.
Some conditions in which kinesio taping will assist are ACL tears, Achilles tendinopathy, brachial plexus injuries, carpal tunnel syndrome, tennis elbow, headaches, patella tendinopathy, shin splints, scoliosis, shoulder pain, bursitis, plantar fasciitis, hamstring tears and groin pain.
While kinesiotaping will greatly assist in reducing your pain levels and returning you to a normal level of function, it is most effective when used in conjunction with an overall physiotherapy treatment. The tape helps while it’s on, but if you aren't addressing the muscle imbalances by doing specified exercises and stretches as well as receiving hands-on treatment and advice, then the injury will return once the tape is off. It is designed to be a training tool so you can exercise pain-free, quickly strengthen your muscles and return to a normal level of function in a shorter time period!
HOW DOES IT WORK?
The following are the current theories of how properly applied Kinesio Tape works.
On skin, the Kinesio Tape pulls the upper layers of skin, creating more space between the dermis and the muscle. The space created is believed to relieve pressure on the lymph channels in the area between the muscle and the dermis, creating more space for lymph flow and thus better lymph drainage through an affected area. This space also houses various nerve receptors that send specific information to the brain. When the space between the epidermis and the muscle is compressed, such as during an injury, these nerve receptors are compressed and send information to the brain regarding continuous touch, light touch, cold, pain, pressure, and heat. This information causes the brain to send out certain signals to the body on how to react to particular stimuli. Kinesio Tape alters the information that these receptors send to the brain and causes a less reactive response in the body, allowing the body to work in a more normal manner and removing some of the roadblocks that normally slow down the healing process.
Kinesio Tape also is felt to affect deeper tissues in the body. Increased space theoretically allows muscles greater contractility, which in turn pushes more fluid through the muscle, resulting in better muscle performance. The end results are believed to be reduced muscle fatigue, increase in range of motion, and better quality of muscle contraction.
Kinesio Tex Tape is used to improve joint alignment by affecting the muscles and fascia.