Kinesiotape – Trend or Real Deal?

Kinesiotape – Trend or Real Deal?

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    As with any other treatment modality, Kinesiotape is just another tool in the toolbox and should be used only after a proper evaluation to determine the structure at fault.

    Kinesiotape (KT)has the following effects:

    • It enhances the sensory feedback to the muscle to improve body awareness.
    • Pressure is relieved on underlying structures to increase blood flow and lymph drainage.
    • Normal sports taping are used to stabilise a joint and restrict motion, whereas KT is used as preventative and supportive measure.
    • Tape lasts 3-5 days without re-application.

    Taping technique is the key to successful application of this tape:

    • This elastic tape can either be used to protect the body or to facilitate normal movement.
    • To enhance muscle action, tape is applied from muscle origin to insertion. To inhibit a muscle,e.g. overtraining, the tape is applied from muscle insertion to origin. Anatomy knowledge is required for application.
    • Method to cut the tape in different shapes:
    Taping technique is the key to successful application!
    Taping technique is the key to successful application!
    1. “I-shape” is used for acute injuries to offer maximal support.
    2. “Y-shape” is used to wrap the muscle bulk.
    3.  “X-shape” is used when a muscle’s origin and insertion changes with regards to joint position.
    4. “Fork-shape” is used to increase lymphatic drainage and improve circulation.

    KT Fork shape

    • Do not stretch the tape too much as it will lose the desired effect. Less is more.

    Although this tape is very beneficial for athletes, always remember that if muscles need to be held together with tape you shouldn’t train.

    Images and illustration provided by BSN Medical

    Lené van Heerden
    As a physiotherapist Lené works with people in all walks of life, taking part in almost any and every type of physical activity. More often than not they find themselves in more pain than what you can ever imagine. Working with these people energizes her, but it is also poses a great challenge. Through this she has learnt a lot about the prevention and management of injuries. Lené will be providing trail runners with valuable tips and techniques to avoid injuries and to enhance their performance on the trails! Trail Running is my ticket to switching off my phone, getting dirty and experiencing nature the way it was intended.