All of you have surely seen the colorful tapes stuck onto the bodies of professional athletes. What are they, how does they work and what do they actually do? I’ll answer these questions below.
Kinesiology Taping was developed by Dr. Kenzo Kase in the 1970’s, but it became popular at the beginning of the 21st century.
The aim of this taping is to stimulate weakened muscles, normalize their tension, reduce skin hypersensitivity, bring relief and correction to the dermatophytid-fascia system and improve microcirculation.
Kinesiology Taping also helps reduce inflammation and edemas caused by injuries. It does this by lifting the skin, creates a space beneath that increases blood flow and the circulation of lymphatic fluids. Moreover, folds of the skin (which increase the space between the fascia and skin) after taping help improve the nervous system’s functions. Taping also increases mobility and corrects joint positions (or posture if we use it to correct posture defects), but primarily it also reduces the feeling of pain.
Kinesiology Tapes are high-class medical products. They are waterproof, but they allow air to pass through, therefore the body’s heat exchange is undisturbed. Apart for standard versions, there are tapes available for people with skin hypersensitivity, allergies, or even atopic dermatitis.
These tapes do not contain any analgesics, their action is based solely on their physical effect on the human body. The colors of the tapes aren’t relevant – they are only a matter of the physiotherapist’s taste. Interestingly, the weight and thickness of the tape is almost identical to the thickness of the skin, so patients do not feel the tape at all.
A precise functional assessment of musculoskeletal disbalance and an evaluation of the musculoskeletal system by a qualified physiotherapist are required before applying the tape. Therefore, if you are interested in testing Kinesiology Taping, you should go to a specialist who will tape you according to appropriate taping techniques (the direction and pattern of the application, etc.) and their own professional knowledge on the treatment of sports injuries.
Undoubtedly, taping has an analgesic effect, it is successful in eliminating swelling and accelerating the treatment of injuries, but its main advantage is that it can be applied without any restrictions and without having any negative effects on our body.
Neurologia 2/5 Hałas I., Fuchs M., Kinesiology Taping – plastrowanie dynamiczne w neurologii , p. 1-22.
Jaracz E., Metoda Kinesiotaping i jej zastosowanie w wybranych przypadkach ortopedycznych, AWF Warszawa 2005