KINESIOLOGY TAPE is used in so many different settings and sports, but if you strip away all the fancy words and stick to the science, there’s still NO CLEAR ANSWER to ‘HOW DOES KINESIOLOGY TAPE WORK?’.
HOWEVER, we can draw some informed ideas based on the research and anecdotal evidence from using tape in clinical practice. Most of the below comes directly from our own experts and Academy Directors – Rob Madden and Patrick Harding.
HOW DOES KINESIOLOGY TAPE WORK?
1. THE MECHANICAL EFFECT
The recoil of K-tape creates a LIFTING MOTION on the skin. This creates space between the top layer of the skin & underlying tissues. This reduces pressure on pain receptors within the skin, and reduces resistance to LYMPHATIC DRAINAGE.
The lymphatic system is responsible for removing waste substances, excess fluids & cellular debris from the blood stream. The lifting action of K Tape REDUCES COMPRESSION on the affected area. This allows fluids to move into the lymphatic vessels more easily.
It is also theorised that the wave pattern on the tape creates areas of HIGH and LOW pressure (Much like a snaking river). This aids circulation and lymphatic flow beneath the tape. Nifty eh?
2. NEUROSENSORY RESPONSE
K Tape can be used to target the neuromuscular system, providing muscles and areas of pain with a SENSORY BOMBARDMENT that can help to reduce the feeling of PAIN. In other words, Kinesiology Tape works by tricking the brain into forgetting about the area of pain, as it suddenly has to focus on lots of different sensory inputs.
There is also something to be said for the PROPRIOCEPTIVE element of K Taping. Taping in clinical practice has shown that providing an area with a new sensory input can lead to enhanced motor control, meaning movements can be performed more accurately.
This can be really beneficial during new REHAB PROGRAMS where alignment during movements is so essential. If a patient can perform rehab exercises with reduced pain, then they are more likely to buy-in to the program and make a full recovery.
Remember, when it comes to K Taping, there are NO RULES. ONLY GUIDELINES. So don’t be afraid to try out new applications and form your own theories around how K Tape works.
Now that you know the theory of How Kinesiology Tape works, it’s time to put it into practice. Buy the best K Tape you’ll ever use below.