Kinesiology tape is frequently used to treat tissue overload conditions, also referred to as a repetitive stress or overuse injuries. The primary running conditions I have a high success rate with the flexible Kinesiology tape are achilles tendinitis, hamstring tendinitis, patellar tendinitis (runner's knee), patella femoral syndrome, iliotibial band syndrome, gluteal tendinitis, piriformis syndrome and adductor strains. I have found kinesiology tape more effective for lower ITB pain, patellar femoral syndrome and outer knee pain than the "McConnel" taping technique. Also, shin splints and plantar fasciitis actually respond much better with stronger less flexible white athletic tape because it provides much more support than kinesiology tape does. I use the white athletic tape in my point of pain Shin Splint Taping, Plantar fasciitis, Foot Pain Taping, and Ankle Sprain Taping.
Kinesiology tape's primary attribute is almost always providing immediate pain reduction in addition to improving athletic performance from 10 to 20%. This can represent a huge aspect of injury prevention and recovery, along with improved performance. Have you noticed the increased use of compression apparel legs, calves, and socks? Compared to compression apparel, Kinesiology tape is a more exact application of compression science, with a specific treatment to a particular muscle's origin and/or tendon insertion. It also helps reduce pain from a strain in the middle of a muscle and works 24/7 for days.
The science behind the tape is multi-fold. Muscles have a cover over them called fascia. Kinesiology tape is able to slightly separate the fascia from the muscle, allowing blood vessels underneath the fascia to dilate, improving circulation. The tape also reduces pressure on the pain receptors in the skin surface. Kinesiology tape's benefits are:
1. Increases the amount of power a muscle and tendon can exert
2. Increases lymphatic and blood circulation
3. Increases range of motion
4. Reduces muscle fatigue and cramping ( spasms)
5. Reduces excessive tissue vibration and overload
6. Reduces swelling and inflammation
7. Reduces pain and stiffness
8. Reduces muscle tightness and/or tension
Now lets get down to the Kinesiology taping basics:
This tape is usually found at running specialty stores. It is best applied to clean, dry skin without hair. The tape has an additional 10 percent elasticity built into it, so there is no need to pull it aggressively. Apply with little tension for best results. Once applied, I prefer to lightly massage the tape onto the skin for a minute or so to ensure better contact. You should feel the initial tension on your skin, usually coinciding with pain reduction. The tape can be left on, as long as you are comfortable, for a few days or so. It should not cause discomfort or keep you from sleeping. If so, remove the tape. I cut off the corners to reduce fraying. Often, I will split the tape, as you will see. These are kinesiology taping techniques designed for the general public that should improve many of the most common running-related conditions. If your condition doesn't significantly improve within a week, see a sports specialist.
Dr. Paul R. Copeskey, DC, CCFC
I have also used Kinesiology tape on my two Weimaraners when they logged about 4-6 miles daily with me and occasionally came up lame. To say I believe in this tape is an understatement. Whether on patients, personal use or on animals, its effectiveness has always been noticeable. Since I originally posted this, the kinesiology taping of animals has moved from a new science to the mainstream.
Kinesiology tape therapy was invented in 1979. Although this has been a relatively new taping philosophy primarily used by chiropractors in its infancy, it is now universally recognized. Most sports doctors, therapists, trainers or athletes, understand its benefits and efficacy.
As an experienced sports doctor and scientist I have used kinesiology tape on my patients since 2007. As a daily runner I have personally used this tape for years and in my own marathon preparation. Kinesiology tape is a terrific aid in helping a patient maintain or get back to an active life style with less time on the sideline due to pain. That said, correcting the body's anatomical leg length difference and abnormal foot pronation with custom orthotics has always made the biggest impact on my patients' running related symptoms.
Kinesiology Taping Therapy