What is it?
Kinesiology Tape was developed in 1973 by the Japanese chiropractor Kenzo Kase® to replace the stiff medical tape he was using in his practice. Through developing Kinesiology Tape he was successfully able to meet his end goal which was to mimic the elasticity of skin. This therapeutic tape made headlines during the 2008 Olympics when it was seen worldwide being used by talented Olympians. Since this time, its popularity has continued to grow and is now used by anyone looking for some muscle or joint support. Kinesiology Tape is most well-known amongst athletes, athletes trainers, and physical therapists.
Benefits of Kinesiology Tape?
Kinesiology Tape offers a variety of benefits to a variety of users, we most commonly see Kinesiology Tape being used by athletes, though its benefits can be enjoyed by anyone. The following are just a few of the benefits that Kinesiology Tape can provide the user:
- Pain Relief
- Muscle support
- Injury prevention
- Help with Muscle sprains
- Help with Arthritis
- Help with Lupus
- Help with Fibromyalgia
- Increase blood flow
- Reduce swelling
- Decrease inflammation
- Reduce falling risks in elders
- Help with tendinopathies
- Improved athletic performance
- Fascial support
- Help with poor posture
- Help with growing pains
Risks of Kinesiology Tape
Kinesiology Tape is relatively risk free, with very few reports of mild side effects. In situational cases the following risks apply
- Allergic reaction: Kinesiology Tape poses a risk to those that have a history of allergic reaction to adhesives. Kinesiology Tape is generally applied to the skin for multiple hours to days at a time and this long exposure period could cause some skin irritation or allergic reactions.
- Deep Vein Thrombosis: Deep vein thrombosis is a blood clot that forms in the veins of the arm or the leg. When Kinesiology Tape is applied on or near this clot it could cause it to move and be a concern for risk of a pulmonary embolism.
- Open Wounds: Kinesiology Tape should not be used on or near open wounds. Kinesiology Tape when placed on an open wound or cut can create a situation where bacteria can be introduced.
- Cancer: Kinesiology Tape is a risk to use if the individual is going through treatment for cancer. Cancer may cause skin to break more easily. In addition, Kinesiology tape can increase circulation and might cause increased blood flow to a cancerous lesion.
If any of these risks apply to you, please consult a doctor prior to using Kinesiology Tape.
How does it work?
Kinesiology Tape works best when it is breathable and elastic. The elasticity of Kinesiology Tape mimics that of the skin allowing for the skin to be slightly lifted off from the tissues below it. This lift, helps reduce pressure in the area and creates a pathway for increased blood flow and lymphatic flow.
How to apply?
Kinesiology Tape can be applied by the individual themselves, or by a medical or holistic practitioner. When taking on the task yourself it is beneficial to have a practitioner or doctor do a demonstration, or to follow a video on the proper techniques and locations to apply. The most common techniques used are as follows:
- Neutral Technique: The neutral technique refers to when the goal of the tape is to stretch the muscle. This technique should be used for situations when the muscle is strained or injured, or to help activate a muscle for performance. In this technique, the tape is not stretched or pulled hard. This ensures that the individual is comfortable at all times of wear.
- Stretch technique: The stretch technique refers to when the goal of the tape is to create lift. This technique should be used on specific trigger points where pain is occurring. The lift from this technique will reduce the pressure and increase the circulation to the area.
Step by step application guide:
- Prepare the skin through cleaning and drying the application area. If the application area has excess hair the application will work best if the hair can be trimmed or removed through shaving or waxing it off.
- Cut the appropriate length of tape for the area in question. Ensure your pieces have rounded edges.
- Remove the backing from the Kinesiology Tape.
- Apply one end to the skin, this will be the anchor. Rub the anchor end to activate the adhesive.
- Apply the tape to the area in question. Depending on the specific needs, apply with as little or as much pressure as needed.
- Once the tape has been applied, rub the tape to activate the adhesive to ensure it stays in place.
Different kinesiology tape cuts?
- I-Cut: The I-Cut is used for muscle facilitation and inhibition, and is the building block for the other variations of Kinesiology Tape cuts. To make an I-Cut, use pre-cut strips or cut off the amount needed. Once you have the desired length round the edges using scissors to avoid it being easily removed by clothes.
- Y-Cut: The Y-Cut is used to help avoid taping over sensitive areas such as the back of the knee or the front of the elbow. The Y-Cut is made by using pre-cut strips or cutting an I-Cut strip, and then cutting lengthwise down to about half way.
- X-Cut: The X-Cut is used for large area coverage across multiple joints. This cut can help avoid taping over sensitive areas such as the back of the knees, the front of the elbows, and can be applied over large muscles like the hamstrings. The X cut is made by using pre-cut strips or by cutting an I-Cut strip and then cutting lengthwise on either end leaving a 2” uncut center
- Fan Cut: The Fan Cut is used to control the swelling of the leg or the arm most. The fan cut is made by cutting an I-Cut strip, and then making 3 cuts lengthwise.
- Lift Cut: The Lift Cut is used to lift the skin and tissues off sore muscles and areas to relieve pressure. The Lit Cut is made by cutting a small sized I-Cut and stretched to 75-100%.
Now that you know everything that you need to know about Kinesiology Tape it’s time to test it for yourself. Purchase directly from our website and try the Heali Difference where you get all the benefits of Kinesiology Tape with the added bonus of infused natural ingredients. Heali Tape Pro has a strong focus on style and is infused with Menthol and Magnesium to help with Pain Relief and Faster Recovery.