How Is Kinesiology Tape Used to Treat Personal Injuries?
Kinesiology taping is a specific type of treatment that a trained physical therapist will use for certain types of personal injuries. The method involves placing strips of tape, this isn’t your regular tape, but they are specifically designed to improve support and mobility.
Kinesiology tape was developed in the 70s by Dr Kenso Kase, DC. He found that using a particular type of tape which would harness the skin to the muscles helped to improve his patients’ recovery. He then went on to develop many Kinesiology taping techniques used today along with his brand of tape called Kinesiotape.
What is Special About Kinesiology Tape?
Sure, Kinesiology tape does appear to be similar to a lot of fancy athletic tape that’s sold, but there are notable differences. Athletic tape is mainly used to support and often limit motion, while kinesiology tape is meant to improve motion and inhibit pain. That’s why kinesiology tape is more flexible, which accommodates movement while regular athletic tape is inflexible. The other significant difference is that Kinesiology tape assists with improving lymph transport as well as increase circulation.
What Does Kinesiology Do?
The tape is meant to serve many different functions depending on what the therapist sees fit. However, at Dynamic Physical Therapy, we start with performing a thorough evaluation and assessment to find and use the best kinesiology tape for the condition we are treating. Plus, we also need to assess if using tape is necessary or if it might cause contraindications.
Many theories center around the use of kinesiology tape. The first theory is that it changes the proprioception input in the skin, muscles and joints. The tape helps with the interaction of the skin as well as the underlying structures which resets the circuitry, improving muscular activation.
It is also thought that Kinesiology works by inhibiting the nociceptors or what’s called pain pathways in the skin, joints and muscles. Generally, most therapists agree that the use of Kinesiology tape helps to create balance in the skin, tendons, joints and muscle circuitry. The consequence of that balance is reduced pain and improved muscle performance.
Does Kinesiology Tape Work?
We need to be clear about the fact that the 40 odd years that Kinesiology tape has been used in physical therapy isn’t a long enough time. Much more research is needed to understand how the tape works. At present therapists like us know two things the first that the tape works and the second is how to use it for optimal results.
In terms of research, some studies show the link between the use of Kinesiology tape and improved muscular contractions in large muscle groups like the quadriceps. Then there is also a study that shows an improvement in the range of low back motion after Kinesiology tape has been applied. Studies also show that using the tape leads to long term improvement in cervical issues and neck pain mainly associated with whiplash from an accident.
If you are suffering from pain mainly brought on by personal injuries, we can help you. Call us today to make an appointment.