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You may have seen it covering athletes in the Olympics, or maybe someone who trains at your gym uses it. Either way, you probably have questions about Kinesiology tape…What is it for? Does it work? And, of course, should I be using it?
Kinesiology tape is, quite literally, tape. Designed to be of similar thickness and elasticity to human skin, it’s made of stretchy, bandage-like cotton and acrylic adhesive. There are a number of ways it can be used, both to help heal injuries and prevent them.
A good example of a preventative use would be taping your knee instead of wearing a brace. Traditional braces are cumbersome, restrictive, and can restrict blood flow. Kinesiology tape is designed to support the joint while allowing a full range of motion. Because you aren’t wrapping it around the limb, it also doesn’t restrict blood flow.
Many runners suffer from Plantar Fasciitis, a painful condition often caused by poor arch support. Kinesiology tape has proven an effective treatment, providing much-needed arch support to reduce pain and assist in healing.
I have used it to support my upper back, and a colleague was able to get some relief from his foot pain by taping his arch. From my personal experience, I believe Kinesiology tape is an excellent, non-invasive way to help the body heal, support joints, and relieve pain.
There are many types of Kinesiology tape on the market. My favorite is KT Tape Pro Pre-Cut Strips, available in black, beige, and blue on Target.com. I wore this brand of tape for four days before I peeled it off, but you should be able to get up to seven full days of wear. It held up well, even after multiple hot showers and some intense workouts.
Should you try it? Yes, unless you have any of the following conditions (or think you might). NEVER use Kinesiology tape if you suffer from:
∙ Deep Vein Thrombosis
∙ Kidney Problems
∙ Congestive Heart Failure
∙ Infection of any kind
NEVER. I mean it.
Of course, it’s always important to speak with a health professional before trying any new treatment. I spoke with my Chiropractor about using Kinesology tape…You may want to check with yours, or your primary care physician.