Over the past few years, we have seen kinesiology (K) tape bolstered to the buttocks of volleyballs players, trussed to the thighs of race horses and fixed to the faces of Youtube sensations. K tape is proposed to lift up the skin, which is thought to enable the lymphatic system and blood to flow more smoothly underneath. The theory sounds reasonable, but is it fact or unnecessary skin friction?
Here’s the good news: K tape is better than minimal intervention – doing next to nothing. But the good news ends there, K tape fanatics, as it is no better than other treatment approaches to musculoskeletal pain. This includes treatments like massage and joint mobilisation (1). In fact a separate, good quality study reported K taping to be no better than sham taping (putting on normal tape without tension), or normal, rigid taping (the bad looking brown…
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