What is Kinesiology taping method?
It is a rehabilitative taping technique that facilitates body’s inbuilt healing process while providing support and stability to joints and muscles without restricting the movements. Taping techniques had been used for treating different ailments from a very long time. However, a small disadvantage with the rigid taping material was that the movement of joints was restricted. The patient usually faced difficulty in the joint movement with the tape on. Hence, later on Kinesiology tapes were introduced, which brought a revolution in the field of sports science. It is widely used in the treatment of various disorders in conjunction with other treatments and is highly preferred by athletes.
What are the properties of Kinesio tape?
- It is a thin, stretchy, elastic cotton strip with an acrylic adhesive strip.
- It has the ability to stretch to 120- 140% of its original length.
- It can also recoil to original length after it is stretched and applied
- The glue is heat activated.
What are the benefits of Kinesiology tape?
- The tape almost resembles the skin, has numerous pores in it and hence allows normal breathing of skin.
- Does not cause any skin irritation and therefore it is safe.
- It is water resistant, hence can be used during exercise and even during profuse sweating. Patient can take bath with the tape on.
- Allows free movement of the joints without any restrictions and at the same time provides protection to the injured structures.
- It can stay for 3 to 5 days or even longer.
Kinesiology tape can be applied in different ways. Only a trained physiotherapist can apply the tape properly. A thorough evaluation is needed to understand why and what structures are to be taped. After the evaluation, the tape is applied in different forms, patterns and stretch is given accordingly.
What are the uses of this tape?
- For stabilising the joint: K- tape can be applied wherever there is a problem with the joint stability. Eg: Ankle sprain, Muscle tear etc. It provides adequate support to the joint till the injury is healed.
- For improving circulation: K- tape lifts the skin upwards which improves the blood circulation. This helps in reducing the swelling in any body part.
- Muscle facilitation: When applied in a proper way, kinesiology tape activates muscle fibers and helps in strengthening the weak muscles. It is also used by athletes for improving their perfomance.
- Biomechanical correction: Biomechanical alterations may cause pain, injury or reduced muscle function. Kinesiology tape is effective in correcting biomechanical abnormalities and for injury prevention.
- Pain relief: K- tape blocks the transmission of pain impulses. Hence it is effective in reducing pain.
- Muscle relaxation: Stiffness, muscle spasm etc. can be relieved significantly with the proper application of kinesiology tape.
Overall, kinesiology taping has a lot of benefits in medical practise. It needs to be applied in the right way to get the desired effects. Kinesiology tape used along with other treatments is highly effective in injury prevention and faster recovery.
About The Author
Mr. Nithin Krishna K– MPT, Physiotherapy, RxDx.
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