Have you noticed those bright-colored, funny-looking tapes athletes sometimes wear? Kinesiotaping is nothing new. It was first developed by Dr. Kenzo Kase, a Japanese traditional medicine practitioner, in the late 1970s. His approach was designed to facilitate the body’s natural healing process while providing stability to muscles and joints.
The Kinesiotape was made publicly available in 1983, but it wasn’t until the Japan National Volleyball Team used it in 1989 that it became more well-known. From then on, Kinesiotaping has become increasingly popular within the international sporting arena.
What Makes Kinesiotape Special?
Kinesiotape is made of polymer elastic wrapped in 100% cotton fibers. It can be stretched up to 140% of its original length and can be recoiled back to its unstretched length following application. The material is waterproof, but still allows for evaporation of moisture. This is why it can be worn during exercise or showering, and even for days at a time.
Kinesiotape is special because it mimics the physical qualities of human skin. Its thickness and weight are similar to that of the epidermis, along with its inherent elastic properties. The medical-grade adhesive used is heat-activated and runs in a wave-like pattern to imitate fingerprints.
How is Kinesiotape used in physical therapy?
Kinesiotaping is one of the treatments a physical therapist may use to help patients return to their normal level of mobility. The method involves placing strips of Kinesio tape on affected parts of the body, in specific directions, to serve different functions such as:
- Treating Injuries – Kinesio tape is used to mitigate swelling and pain, in conjunction with other treatments like manual therapy. It is believed to create a microscopic space between the skin and its underlying structures. This results in improved muscular activation and performance.
- Adding Extra Support – Kinesio tape can support weak zones of the muscles and joints. It is effective on fatigued muscles and suggested for patients suffering from patellofemoral stress syndrome, IT band friction syndrome, or Achilles tendonitis.
- Retraining Muscles – According to research, having the sensation of tape on your skin increases your awareness on how you are moving. Thus, therapists also use it to retrain muscles with impaired function or have gotten used to an unhealthy way of working.
- Preventing Further Injury – Kinesio taping can prevent either overstretching or over-contraction of injured muscles or joints, without restricting range of motion. Its ability to enhance circulation to overused or fatigued muscles can help in preventing muscle cramps or spasms.
- Relieving Pain – It may not contain any medication or topical substances, but kinesiology tape is effective in relieving pain. The way it lifts the skin reduces pressure on sensitive pain receptors. It creates a stimulating effect on pain pathways and blocks pain signals going to the brain.
There is a pattern to follow when it comes to addressing a specific problem involving the muscles and joints. This is why Kinesiotape is best used under the supervision of a professional. Physical therapists are trained how to properly apply kinesiotape, along with stabilization and decompression strips.
Musculoskeletal & Sports Therapy Dubai
Kinesiotaping is considered a supportive therapy and not a permanent solution. The key to full recovery is still correcting the root problem. If you want to know how the therapeutic benefits of Kinesiotaping can help your condition, consult with the experts of Scandinavian Physiotherapy Center.
The clinic offers several specialty treatments including musculoskeletal physiotherapy, sports rehabilitation, osteopathy, therapeutic massage, lymphatic drainage, and more! Call them today at +971 4 551 6126 to book an appointment!