Sports tape is meant to help your body tissues return to homeostasis and is used to prevent injury.

There are many different types of sports tape and taping techniques. Tapes with elastic properties are popular today, and many different brands with similar but slightly varying properties are available. Taping is meant to be used for therapeutic reasons and is not meant to boost performance. Taping can enhance the function of your body’s tissues and can affect many different tissues, including skin, fascia, circulatory/lymphatic, muscles, ligaments, and joints.

Sports tape can treat acute injuries to promote faster healing and reorganization of tissue back to homeostasis. Sports tape can also be used for more chronic problems. However, you should see a professional like a physical therapist if you have a chronic problem. You may need to fix the dysfunction versus relying on tape.

There’s a specific method to the sports taping madness. Various techniques target specific tissue levels. As a certified taping specialist, I recommend an evaluation from your physical therapist, chiropractor or personal trainer in order to identify the specific dysfunction and to develop a plan and best taping technique. A taping professional can show you the exact taping method that is best for your injury. Taping is variable and person-specific. After you learn the right technique, you will be able to tape yourself.

A few important sports taping principles to know:
• Less is more.
• Don’t pull the tape as hard as you can. This can cause skin aggravation.
• Don’t create tension on the tape anchors or tape ends.
• I generally recommend a twenty-five percent stretch on the tape.

Work with a professional, so you don’t end up looking like a mummy and prevent adverse conditions from wrong taping application.

By Dr. Laurel Mines