Tape it Up – In Color! Olympic Athletes Modeling a Fun Way to Feel Good
August 6, 2012 § Leave a Comment
If you’ve been tuned to the Olympics coverage then you’ve likely seen the brightly-colored tape some of the Olympic athletes are wearing.
Johanna Wiberg, Sweden’s handball athlete was seen wearing it in blue from her groin to her knee. Germany’s beach volleyball team member Ilka Semmler wears it in pink on her derriere. Other athletes sporting the funky tape include Paula Findlay (Canadian triathlete), Simon Whitfield (Canadian Olympic triathlon champion), and Dotsie Bausch (USA seven-time Cycling National Champion) to name a few. Other more-recognized names to sport the tape include David Beckham, Rory McIlroy, and Serena Williams.
So, what exactly is this tape? Properly known as Kinesiology tape, or Kinesio tape for short, the tape is believed to help Olympiads perform at their world class best, despite injuries, aches, or pains.
While the tape comes in a variety of colors, from bright hot pink to electric blue, it wasn’t designed for fashion. Developed by a Japanese doctor over 30 years ago, the adhesive tape strapping is intended to provide joint and muscle support without having the athlete’s movement restricted.
While there isn’t a ton of research on Kineso tape, there is a small amount of research that suggests its usefulness. “Kinesio tape may be of some assistance to clinicians in improving pain-free active range of movement immediately after tape application for patients with shoulder pain,” wrote scientists in one study published in the Journal of Orthopaedic and Sports Physiotherapy.
Other research findings suggest otherwise: “In a review of all the scientific research so far, published in the Sports Medicine journal in February, researchers found “little quality evidence to support the use of Kinesio tape over other types of elastic taping in the management or prevention of sports injuries”.
Some experts state that its just that the scientific research has not caught up with what athletes and their sports therapists s say about the adhesive strapping’s benefits.
Could it be the placebo effect? Some scientists say maybe. Hey, if it works and can help an athlete get that dream Gold Medal, why not wear it?
Doctor Headquarters (DrHQ.com) Editorial Staff Copyright 2012 – All rights reserved