Marietta Chiropractor Discusses Kinesio Tape for Dummies

Marietta Chiropractor Discusses Kinesio Tape for Dummies

Chiropractic Marietta GA kinesiotape

If you’ve watched any major sporting event lately where the athlete’s bodies are not completely covered, you have probably seen someone who’s been taped up with kinesio tape. Don’t be mistaken, this is not the white or tan tape you see neatly wrapped around football player’s ankles. The tape I’m referring to sometimes looks more like tribal war paint than regular tape. It comes in any color from black and blue to hot pink. I’ve even seen Camo if that’s your cup of tea.

But if you’re anything like me when I first saw it, I thought it looked cool from afar but up close I thought “What does that do and how does it even work?” The tape itself is perfectly stretchy and flexible. Unlike typical athletic tape, kinesio tape is made of a combination of spandex, cotton, and a heat-activated adhesive. This unique blend allows the tape to provide simultaneous support, flexibility, and stick that can last for 3-4 days before it starts to come off.

The purposes of the tape are typically 4-fold: Muscular facilitation, joint support, blood flow/lymphatic drainage, and proprioceptive bombardment. Joint support seems like the most logical application but facilitating the muscles is probably the most common. Often times joint pain or injuries (especially following recreational activities) is the result of muscular imbalances around the joint. Knee pain, for example, may be the result of overactive hamstrings or weak quads, so you can tape the quads to help them not have to work as hard when contracting (by the way, see a great knee taping demonstration here). Imagine you’re at the gym doing some bench presses. After several reps you bring the bar down and suddenly get “stuck”, realizing that you don’t seem to have the strength push it back up. Then your workout partner comes along, places a few of his fingers under the bar and just barely pushes with you and miraculously, that minuscule amount of help was enough for you to get the bar back up. The tape can function in a similar manner.

Some people have found that taping areas with swelling has helped to reduce the edema and speed the healing process. It is thought that the tape is able to pull the skin up just enough to separate the inner layer of skin from the muscles and soft tissue resulting in a small space just big enough to allow better blood flow and lymphatic drainage. For some, the tape also can provide pain relief which is believed to occur due to pulling sensations of the skin and soft tissue interrupting certain pain pathways to the brain.

The peer-reviewed research on how the tape actually works is lacking to say the least. Many in the healthcare world believe that the tape really offers nothing more than a placebo effect. All it takes is one snapshot of James Harden or Serena Williams on the court taped up to get people’s attention. Placebo or not, the tape seems to have noticeable affects, especially for athletes, on joint and muscle function and performance. An effective taping job can provide the perfect balance of support and flexibility allowing you to feel better, play better, and get better. For a more in-depth look into kinesio tape, click here.


Dr. Ian Calk, DC

Bradford Family Chiropractic

If you have any questions regarding the benefits of kinesio tape, give us a call at (770) 552-7979. Bradford Family Chiropractic located in Marietta, GA.

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9:00am - 1:00pm
3:00pm - 7:00pm


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3:00pm - 7:00pm


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Bradford Family Chiropractic
3000 Johnson Ferry Road Suite 102
Marietta, GA 30062
(770) 552-7979