What is Kinesio Tape?

RockTape, KT Tape, KinesioTex, MummyTape, no matter what you call it it’s all Kinesio Tape. Kinesio Tape is extremely popular right now, and there are a lot of questions about it.  I use it in our Cary, NC chiropractic clinic, on patients at Forged Fitness in Raleigh, and on myself!  You’ve probably seen it on someone you know, or at least athletes on television. People seem to be very confused and often ask: What is Kinesio Tape? What does Kinesio Tape do? How do I apply Kinesio Tape? Chiropractors are musculoskeletal experts so who better to answer these questions!

Kinesio Tape Application on the Shoulder

What is Kinesio Tape?

Kinesio Tape is a great tool for chiropractors and other physical medicine practitioners to use on their patients. Many patients who walk into our chiropractic center walk out wearing this tape after they recieve chiropractic adjustments, EMS and ultrasound, and rehab treatments.

The tape is a stretchy, elastic, cotton strip with an acrylic adhesive.  It is easy for a chiropractor to put on and simply requires a bit of measuring, cutting, and placement.  Kinesio Tape was created by a chiropractor who was searching for something to provide support and stability while aiding the body’s natural healing process. It is completely safe to use and non-restrictive unlike athletic tape which is usually used to limit the range of motion after a sprain/strain or prevent one of these.

What Does Kinesio Tape Do?

Kinesio Tape targets different receptors in the skin and muscles which send feedback to the brain and spinal cord.  It also lifts the superficial layers of skin and fascia effectively. By accoplishing these things and others it is able to provide many beneficial effects including but not limited to:

  • Correcting alignment of weak muscles
  • Increasing joint motion
  • Relieving pain
  • Increasing blood and lymph flow
  • Decreasing bruise healing time
  • Decreasing inflammation
  • Increasing joint proprioception (your body’s awareness of where it’s parts are in space.)

How do I Apply Kinesio Tape?

What’s great about Kinesio Tape is that it can be applied to anyone old or young, and it has no known side effects (unless the patient has an allergy to the product.)  It is however somewhat difficult to apply correctly unless you know what you’re doing.  That’s why we put it on for many of our patients here at AccessHealth Chiropractic Center.  Did I mention it’s free for our patients?  To put it on right you have to apply the correct stretch to the tape, put the body parts in the correct postions, and cut it to the correct length.  It’s also useful to clean the area using a baby wipe or something similar first.  I would recomend having a Chiropractor or someone who knows their anatomy very well put it on for you.

The Verdict

Kinesio Tape helps patients get better along with other chiropractic treatments and rehab.  I don’t use it as the only treatment for any of my patients, but I do use it as a supportive therapy.  For example: Kinesio Tape for plantar fasciitis is great, but not the only thing I’m going to do for that condition.  It is a good passive therapy that feels great, helps speed recovery, and looks cool.  If you have questions feel free to ask our doctors at AccessHealth Chiropractic Center in Cary or Dr. Jason at Forged Fitness on Tuesday nights Raleigh.