What does Kinesio Taping do?
Kinesio Taping is applied over muscles to reduce pain and inflammation, relax overused or tired muscles, and support muscles in movement on a 24-hour-a-day basis. The taping is non-restrictive and allows for full range of motion. In contrast, more traditional sports tape is wrapped around a joint strictly for stabilization and support during an athletic event. Just a few examples include rehabilitation from sports injuries, carpal tunnel syndrome, lower back strain/pain (subluxation, herniated disc), knee and shoulder conditions. There are many more.
How is the tape applied?
Without getting too technical, the tape is applied over the affected area with the muscles in a stretched position. Then the tape is applied from one end of the muscle to the other with very little to no stretch on the tape. In general, the tape is applied from the ORIGIN to INSERTION of the muscle for SUPPORT and from INSERTION to ORIGIN for REHAB. The doctor is trained to determine which specific techniques will be most effective for individual patients and injuries.
How does it differ from other taping techniques?
There are three main taping techniques recognized in the United States: White Athletic Taping, McConnell Taping Technique, and Kinesio Taping. White Athletic Taping is the most commonly used taping technique, the tape is extremely rigid and requires a pre-tape prior to application to protect the skin from irritation. Irritation is caused by the entrapment of moisture, high latex content, and severe compression of skin, muscles, and joints. It is typically applied immediately prior to an activity to prevent and protect acute injuries, left on for a short period of time, and taken off immediately after conclusion of activity. There are no rehabilitative uses or benefits. McConnell Taping is a bracing or strapping technique using a super-rigid, cotton mesh, highly-adhesive tape. It affects the biomechanics of the patient and is most commonly used for patellofemoral and shoulder subluxation, as well as lumbar, foot, and hip impingement. It is typically left on for a shorter period of time (no longer than 18 hours) due to its constricting and suffocating feel and adverse skin reaction. The technique is primarily used for neuromuscular re-education of the affected condition and is widely accepted by the medical community. Kinesio Taping is a therapeutic taping technique which not only offers patients and athletes the support they are looking for but helps to rehabilitate the affected condition as well. Using a highly specific tape design that works with the body, allowing full range of movement– in many cases range of movement will be improved – the Kinesio Taping will not affect the patient’s biomechanics. There is no compression on the skin, making it “light to the feel” and allowing comfortable wear over a 3 to 5 day period. The water-resistant fabric wicks away moisture and allows the patient to bathe or even swim as usual. Lymph and blood circulation are facilitated in order to rehabilitate and relieve pain. It is used for virtually any clinical condition.