Taping for Pain, What is Sports Taping?
Taping for pain especially in tendonopathies is an effective technique to support therapy for your condition. Kinesio tape (also called K Tape or Sports taping) is elastic tape applied to the body to provide stability, support, help with weight bearing or to aid in Lymphatic return. Sports tape is used by people from all works of life including office workers, athletes, factory workers, pregnancy and anyone who has a condition where support and stability can be beneficial.
Benefits of Sports Taping?
- Pain Relief
- Swelling Reduction
- Reducing Muscle Fatigue
- Support for injuries and joint stability
- Positioning structures into beneficial positions reduces pain through increased stability or aiding in weight bearing and distribution
- By lifting the skin, K-tape improves lymphatic return, reducing swelling and other inflammatory conditions quickly.
Reduced Muscle Fatigue
K tape provides physical and neurological support for the muscles it is applied to.
Support for Injuries and joint stability
- Supporting irritated structures allows them to be put through range of motion with less stress – improving outcomes.
Common Uses of Sports Taping
Many athletes will include sports taping as part of their sports massage treatments. It can help with:
Sports taping for shin splints
- Shin splints, or medial tibial stress syndrome, typically occur due to excessive stress on the muscles, tendons, and bone tissue in the lower leg. Kinesiology tape is a sports taping technique that can help address shin splints by providing support to the affected muscles and reducing muscular load. The elasticity of the tape allows it to absorb some of the load the muscle is subjected to. A Myotherapist will apply tape at the end of a shin splints treatment after determining which exercise you can tolerate to reduce pain and help the tendon rebuild.
Sports taping for plantar fasciitis
- Plantar fasciitis is often caused by overuse, inappropriate footwear or excess weight. These factors may lead to excessive stress on the plantar fascia – causing swelling and irritation. The elasticity of the tape allows it to absorb some of the load the plantar fascia is subjected to – reducing pain and swelling. A Myotherapist will apply tape at the end of a plantar fasciitis treatment – after determining which exercises reduce your pain and help the tendon rebuild more flexible collagen.
Sports taping for tennis elbow
- Tennis elbow, or lateral epicondylitis, is often caused by repetitive wrist and arm movements, such as computer use, racquet sports – or other activities that strain the forearm muscles. Kinesiology tape is a sports taping technique that will deload the extensor muscles of forearm and the affected tendons and muscles – reducing pain and swelling.
- A Myotherapist will apply tape at the end of a tennis elbow treatment after determining which exercises reduce your pain allowing the tendon to rebuild healthier collagen.
Sports taping for golfers elbow
- Golfer’s elbow is an overuse injury that causes pain and inflammation on the inner side of the elbow. Kinesiology tape is a sports taping technique that can help alleviate symptoms of golfer’s elbow. The tape’s elasticity reduces strain on the affected tendons and muscles (the flexor muscles of the forearm) by absorbing a percentage of muscular force. Golfers elbow is usually caused repetitive gripping – often seen in sports like golf, tennis, or compression activities such as weightlifting. A Myotherapist will apply tape at the end of a golfers elbow treatment after determining which exercises reduce your pain allowing the tendon to rebuild healthier collagen.
Sports taping for patellar tracking
- Kinesiology tape is a sports taping technique that can help address patellar tracking issues by supporting movement of the patella. The gentle pulling helps the patella maintain its position within the femur. Patellar tracking issues usually occur due to muscular imbalances in the quadriceps. This results in pain and instability. A Myotherapist will apply tape at the end of a Knee pain treatment after reducing tone in the over active muscles (usually the vastus lateralis) and showing you an exercise to improve the performance of the vastus medialis – giving you the ability to stop your pain yourself.
Sports taping for sciatica
- Sciatica is distressing sensation that radiates along the path of the sciatic nerve (the lower back, through the buttocks and legs). Kinesiology tape can offer some symptom reduction by keeping people out of painful positions. Sciatica is commonly caused by compression or irritation of the sciatic nerve caused by a herniated disc, spinal stenosis, or muscular compression of the nerve (or the nerve roots that become the sciatic nerve). A Myotherapist may apply sports tape at the end of a sciatica treatment, to help limit the positions an affected individual can move into.
Sports taping for calf strain
- Kinesiology tape is an effective sports taping method for calf strain. The tape’s elasticity reduces strain on the strained calf by absorbing a percentage of muscular force.
- Kinesiology tapes elastic properties allow for unrestricted movement while offering gentle compression and proprioceptive feedback enhances lymphatic circulation -reducing inflammation while deloading the muscles of the calf. A myotherapist will use Sports taping at the end of a calf strain treatment after reducing painful spasm and using low level laser to increase the healing response of the body.
Sports taping for meniscus injury
- Only the most minor meniscus injuries benefit from sports taping. Best practice for severe meniscus tears involves fixating the leg at 90 degrees for 6 weeks using a knee brace. Every two weeks the brace is adjusted to allow more movement. This has been shown to help the damaged tissue knit.
Sports taping for knee support
- Kinesiology tape is an effective sports taping method for many knee stability issues. Kinesiotape provides support to the knee joint by enhancing proprioception, which is the body’s sense of position and movement. This improved neurological awareness may improve alignment and stability of the knee. Kinesiology tapes elasticity allows a near full range of motion while providing compression (offering stability to the joint). In theory kinesiotape allows forces to distribute across the knee joint in a more uniform way.
Sports taping for Achilles tendinopathy
- Kinesiology tape is a useful sports taping method for Achilles tendinopathy. Achilles tendinopathy is an overuse or repetitive injury to the Achilles tendon, and involves swelling, inflammation and degeneration of the tendon. The tape’s elasticity reduces strain on the irritable tendon and overloaded muscle by absorbing a percentage of force. A Myotherapist may apply tape at the end of an Achilles tendinopathy treatment after reducing tone in the overactive muscles and showing you the exercises to improve the health of the tendon – giving you the ability to stop your pain yourself.
How do I get Sports taping?
Sports taping can be done by your sports massage therapist within your sports massage treatment. There is an additional charge of $10 to provide sports tape. Just ask for this when you make your Remedial massage or Myotherapy appointment. We will book you with the best therapist for your condition and arrange for taping to be provided in the session. It is best to book a 60 Minute session if you want taping so there is time to assess, treat and do the taping for you.
How does Taping for pain help in Pregnancy?
Taping can be used to provide support throughout pregnancy. It can help mums remain more athletic and mobile. Pregnancy places a lot of strain on uterine ligaments and sometimes these need some support. Taping can help in the following ways
- Reduce muscle fatigue
- Support uterine ligaments
- Decrease oedema and aid in lymphatic return
- Support sore joints
- Decrease pain
Taping for Pain, Sports Tape Frequently Asked Questions
What if I have a skin reaction?
Take it off immediately if the tape is itchy, painful or feels noticeable in any way. Your therapist will tell you what to look out for. If you ignore these symptoms – you may get a blister which can take time to recover. We advise people to monitor their tape daily. As a general rule, fair skinned individuals shouldn’t leave tape on for more than two days. Blistered skin should have an antiseptic applied immediately.
How long do you leave the tape on for?
Your therapist will determine what skin type and how reactive you are. We use hypo allergenic Rocktape – one of the highest quality kinesio tapes in the world. If you don’t feel itchy, sore or notice the tape – it’s probably ok to keep on for up to a week. But your therapist will look at your skin and risk factors first.
Can strapping tape get wet?
Can you get sports tape wet is a common question. The answer is yes, kinesio tape is water resistant. You can swim, shower etc whilst wearing it. Just pat dry afterwards and don’t use any kind of heat source to dry it like a hair dryer. This can cause the adhesive to degrade and the tape to lose its effectiveness.
How to get sports tape off without hurting?
The number one trick is to take your time! Don’t rip the tape off like a plaster. If you have hair underneath remove the tape in the direction of the hair, you don’t want to give yourself a wax at the same time:) Getting into the shower or thoroughly wetting the tape can help. Start at the corners and peel the tape off slowly, rolling the tape over onto itself. Press the skin down gently. You can apply some oil as you go and this will help reduce the stickiness of the tape. Be patient and whilst there may be slight discomfort it should be fairly painless.