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Kinesiology Tape

One of my first encounters with kinesiology tape was years ago while watching the summer olympics.  USA beach volleyball teammates Misty May-Treanor and Kerri Walsh Jennings had strips of brightly colored tape strategically placed on their bodies.  Up until that time I was only familiar with traditional athletic tape.

Kinesiology taping is a technique used to support joints, muscles and tendons while still allowing motion.  Many physical therapists use this as a compliment to their treatment plan.  Strips of tape are applied in different directions with varying amounts of tension.  Unlike athletic tape that is rigid, kinesiology tape is flexible, allowing for motion and increased circulation.

Applying kinesiology tape to an injured area changes the sensory input from muscles, joints and skin.  This change in sensory input blocks pain signals to the brain.  

Different techniques are utilized for acute and chronic conditions.  There are many indications for the use of kinesiology tape on the foot and ankle.  Some indications include:

Achilles tendinitis
Plantar fasciitis
Turf toe
Peroneal tendonitis
Posterior tibial tendinitis

Most tape configurations are easy enough to apply yourself.  Be sure that all lotions and creams have been removed from the skin prior to applying the tape.  Kinesiology tape may stay in place for 1-5 days.  There are many brands on the market, some of which are latex free, hypoallergenic and water resistant.  Some options include Rock Tape, TheraBand, KT Tape and Spider Tech.