You have probably seen athletes, in the Olympics and elsewhere, sporting tape on their bodies. The tape is often bright colored, and seems to come in all sorts of size and shapes.
So what it is?
It has become quite popular, and two good reasons for that are:
- It’s comfortable
- It works!
Kinesiotape is comfortable because it is stretchy. It is not designed to improve joint stability by physically keeping your joints from moving.
So how DOES it work?
The tape stretches along the skin as your body goes through movements. Essentially, the tape along your joints and muscles gives extra feedback to your brain about body movement. This way, the brain has more information to determine proper control of the muscles around the joint.
Kinesiotape can be used in all areas of the body. Generally it is applied along the muscle bellies of stabilizing muscles.
Another effect that Kinesiotape can have is that it helps reduce swelling. Because the tape lifts the skin a bit, it improves circulation of lymph and blood flow. This makes Kinesiotape an appropriate tool to use in acute injuries as well.