Kinesio Taping Will Aid Injured Olympic Athletes in Sochi
You have probably seen athletes like David Beckham and Serena Williams sporting a mysterious colorful therapeutic tape called Kinesio Tex Tape. While it may not be as obvious at the Winter Olympic Games in Sochi, athletes from skiers to ice hockey players are sure to be using the tape for its therapeutic properties.
What Is Kinesio Tape?
Kinesio tape is a cotton elastic tape used to treat a variety of injuries and dysfunctions. Dr. Kenzo Kase, inventor of the Kinesio Taping Method, and a team of Kinesio Taping practitioners will be in Sochi to tape the athletes. In addition, Dr. Kase is presenting a workshop to team physical therapists and physicians sponsored by the International Olympic Committee.
What Kind of Injuries Can Be Treated with Kinesio Tape?
At the 2010 Winter Olympics, one in ten athletes was injured. Those at highest risk for injury are bobsledders, ice hockey players, short track racers, alpine freestyle skiers and snowboard crossers. The most common injuries are bruising, ligament sprains and muscle strains to the head, neck and knees. Skiers and snowboarders have a high incidence of low back dysfunction and sacroiliac joint asymmetry due to frequent falls and single leg impacts from shifting weight. All of these injuries lend themselves to use of the Kinesio Taping Method:
- Bruising and edema (swelling): Within 24 hours of application of the Kinesio Tape, dramatic changes are seen, improving the patient’s ability to move due to less pain.
- Ligament sprains: The tape gives support to the joints and improves proprioception, the position sense of the joint. It also aids in the re-training process and helps to prevent re-injury.
- Muscle strains: Taping decreases edema and allows for the healing process to occur. As the injury becomes less acute, taping facilitates the muscle and helps the athlete re-train for improved function.
You don’t need to be an Olympian or even an athlete to benefit from this treatment option. Eighty-five percent of those who use Kinesio Tape are not athletes.
Kinesio Tape should be applied by someone who has been trained in its use and application. Many Good Shepherd Rehabilitation Network therapists are certified in the Kinesio Taping Method.
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