Kinesiology tape is a stretchy cotton tape with acrylic adhesive that can be applied to a variety of musculoskeletal injuries to help reduce inflammation, support muscle strains and provide minor postural support for injuries such as sprained ankles or back strain.
It works by improving the afferent/efferent communication between muscles and pain receptors–It’s like hitting Control + ALT + DELETE on your computer. Kinesio tape has mainly a neurosensory application, meaning the tape stimulates specific proprioceptors which respond to positional pressure and stretch. It has a recoil effect that lifts the skin to allow space between the muscle and dermis for increased fluid movement in the interstitial space where blood and lymphatic fluid flow. This results in decreased pain, inflammation and muscle spasm. It works best in conjunction with hands on work and is like taking your therapist’s hands home with you.
We practice 3 specific taping techniques, Neuro-sensory, Specific Proprioceptive Response Taping (SPRT) and Structural.
Each technique has a specific application to achieve a specific result.
Neuro-sensory taping is the most widely recognized taping application and the one most athletes associate with kinesiology taping.
Specific Proprioceptive Response Taping is a neuro-sensory taping with a significant stretch used to assist functional movement. It is often combined with a stiffer, structural tape such as lukotape to maintain full function while offering postural support, biofeedback and decreased pressure on pain receptors. Great for osteoarthritis support as well as correction of weakened postural muscles.
Structural Taping. This method uses a very stiff tape with little to no stretch such as cover roll with lukotape or traditional athletic tape to block range of motion that would further cause injury. It’s best used to assist in stability and ligament laxity/instability. By limiting range of motion, it stops you from putting your body into positional that cause pain and injury. Great for chronic neck pain or tired back muscles.
Although tape can be used to assist an injury, the important thing to remember is that it is not a permanent solution. Read our most recent blog post about kinesiology tape here