Kinesiology tapes have gained popularity in the sports industry over the years. Even if you are not an athlete, you may have seen them, heard of them, or even used them. Those sticky tapes, despite their increasing popularity, remain a mystery to a lot of people today. This article is going to let you in on everything you need to know about kinesiology tapes. At the end of this, the mystery of k-tapes will surely be unraveled.
The idea of kinesiology tape first came into fruition in the late 1970s, thanks to a certain Dr. Kase.
Dr. Kenzo Kase was born into a Japanese family in the early 1940s, and he struggled with many diseases in his childhood. His grandmother happened to be a Japanese healer, and it is often speculated that his passion came from watching her. Eventually, this man went on to become a doctor himself. He treated a lot of elderly people with arthritis and other patients with bone problems.
As a doctor, treating the patients in the office may not have been a herculean task, but the problem was keeping them in check outside the clinic. Several musculoskeletal issues are caused and may be worsened by bad posture or some bad habits in general.
After being treated in the hospital, many patients went back to their daily lives, which, of course, meant a return to their bad habits. This prompted Dr. Kase to seek a lasting solution. He needed something to keep his patients in check outside the hospital and relieve their pain at the same time. Such a thing did not exist yet.
Dr. Kase went ahead to invent what he needed, and by 1979, the first kinesiology tape, called Kinesio tex tape, was produced. This new tape, contrary to ordinary medical tape, was flexible, elastic, and comfortable. It was the perfect thing to relieve musculoskeletal pain, aid movement, and provide support.
The tape could also help patients improve their posture by increasing their consciousness. In the next few lines, we will be discussing these functions of the Kinesio tape in detail.
Reduction of Musculoskeletal Pain: Seemingly an added effect, reduction of musculoskeletal pain is one of the core functions of kinesiology sports tape. It sounds ridiculous that a strip of tape can relieve pain, but it is true, and here is how.
The process by which Kinesio tape reduces pain is called decompression. While on the surface, k-tape may give the impression of compressing or tightening the skin, it is doing the exact opposite in the layers beneath it.
Underneath the skin are several bones, vessels, nerves, tissues, fluids, and muscles, and a lot of them are in contact with the skin. Kinesio tape creates an infinitesimal distance between the skin and the things beneath it. Despite being incredibly small, this space is responsible for many of the k-tape’s functions. Pain can only be felt when the brain receives pain signals from the receptors on the skin.
The Kinesio tape makes sure this does not happen, thanks to the subcutaneous space created, by changing the signals completely. This is enough to reduce musculoskeletal pain. However, the space also reduces friction between skin and bone which can further help to relieve pain.
Prevention and Management of Injuries: Kinesiology tapes can be used to prevent injuries by providing musculoskeletal support and stability. This role may seem restricted to athletes, but it is, in fact, not. Before any dangerous or physically exhausting activity, you can apply Kinesio tape to whichever part of your body you will use most.
This function is best suited to the limbs and their extremities. You can tape a joint like the shoulder, elbow, or knee to provide support during strenuous activity. If you get injured, it can reduce the impact and prevent complete displacement in the case of dislocation.
Moving on, kinesiology sports tapes can also be used in the treatment of injuries. Applying k-tape in combination with other forms of therapy may prove to be a lifesaver. In addition to the pain relief explained above, Kinesio tape can also help reduce swelling and inflammation. The space created by the tape is responsible for this function. The tape can also provide support to weak and worn muscles in the process.
Correction of Posture: This was also one of Dr. Kase’s goals in producing Kinesio tape. The tape can help to increase consciousness and improve proprioception which, in turn, helps to correct your posture.
Now that you know the basic features of kinesiology tape, which are elasticity, flexibility, and comfortability, how about we get a bit more specific? What are the features of our Hampton Adams 16ft Kinesiology Tape?
- The 16ft kinesiology sports tape produced at Hampton Adams is an embodiment of comfortability. We understand that this is a priority when it comes to skin products, so all our materials and production processes are geared toward providing you utmost comfort. We use pure cotton substrate, ensuring that you never feel an itch because of our tape.
Using hypoallergenic and medical-grade materials has also helped us make our tape feel like a second skin. The use of all these quality materials adds to the strength and resilience of our tape. Furthermore, our Kinesio tape does not contain latex or other common allergens that can otherwise cause strong reactions.
- There is a “no sticky residue” policy on all of our taping products, including the 16ft kinesiology tape. If you have used any other kind of tape, this is a problem that you may have encountered: a sticky residue on your skin after removal. Not only is this residue uncomfortable and irritating for the skin, but it can also be hard work to remove.
Through the use of a special formula in the production of our adhesive, we have eliminated this problem at Hampton Adams. It is important to us that anyone is able to use our tape without the fear of skin damage or irritation.
- In a bid to ensure comfortability and aid movement, we have made our kinesiology tape very flexible and elastic. Even though these may be necessary criteria for Kinesio tape, not all brands understood the assignment.
Our tape is easy to move around in without fear of it tearing all falling off. It is tailored for maximum mobility while providing support. Its stretchiness also does not reduce its firmness, which attests to the high quality of the tape.
- Our Hampton Adams 16ft kinesiology tape is also water-resistant. You do not have to worry about taking it off before a shower or a swim. Professional swimmers will find this particularly useful.
- Lastly, our tape is durable, strong, and FDA-approved. This, and all the other features explained above, should be enough to see why it is such a top choice among physical therapists.
- Before resorting to the use of kinesio tape, it is best to, first of all, consult a doctor. In the case of an injury, some processes may be necessary before application. Not going through these processes may lead to future complications.
Visit a professional and describe your condition, they will let you know if the application of kinesio tape is the best line of action for you. They will also be the ones to tell you how often you need to apply it, for how long, and what technique will be most suitable for your situation.
- After this, you may try on a test strip. This involves applying the tape to a small part of your body. This step is specifically for people who fear that they may react to tape or those who have certain conditions that may prevent them from using the tape. The test strip will help you figure out if the tape is safe for you.
- The next thing you have to do is clean the spot you will be applying the tape to. Wax off any excess hair to improve adhesion and prevent painful removal. Also, wash and dry the spot to improve effectiveness and reduce the risk of contamination. Make sure you dry the spot thoroughly as the tape won’t stick if it is wet.
- Cut the size of tape that you need, preferably a little more than the required length. Turn it into a roll, hold it above the affected area, and start applying. If you are applying it to a joint like your knee or elbow, bend the joint before applying the tape to prevent it from falling off on the extension of the limb. Apply firmly but not tightly to avoid cutting off blood circulation. Smoothen it over with your hands after application to improve adhesion.
You can visit our Hampton Adams page to purchase any tape or taping equipment. Quality and comfort await you!