Kinesiology tape or tape more commonly called “tape” is presented as a tool to prevent injuries, support joints and improve muscle function during activities or physical efforts such as sport, standing or sitting work, work, moving … More specifically, that – this is presented as a adhesive elastic band whose goal is to dynamically support the muscle and to accompany the movement without limiting joint mobility. It arises in different ways depending on the chosen area: the knee (kneecap), ankle (Achilles tendon), shoulder, elbow (tennis-elbow), neck (trapezius) or lumbar.
In regards to shoulder pain, researchers from the Faculty of Medicine of Laval University and the Center for Interdisciplinary Research in Rehabilitation and Social Integration warn in a recent study against the use of these tapes. Published in the journal Sports Health, it reveals that the use ofkinesiological tapedoes not add any medium or long term benefit to rehabilitation exercises targeting this specific area. To arrive at this demonstration, the researchers recruited 52 people with chronic rotator cuff tendinopathy, that is, they had tendonitis or bursitis of the shoulder.
“It relieves the pain, but we do not heal faster”
The participants were all put through an individualized six-week rehabilitation program. This program consisted of 10 sessions of 30 to 45 minutes during which the subjects were to perform a series of exercises under the supervision of a physiotherapist. They also had to do daily exercises at home. Half of the participants did these exercises with a “taping” on the affected shoulder, whose application was made according to the recommendations of the Kinesio Taping Association International. Different tests to assess symptoms, including pain and functional limitations of the joint, were performed at the start of the study and after 3, 6, 12 and 24 weeks.
Results? The researchers observed an improvement in the condition of the subjects at all chapters and at all times of measurement. In contrast, this progress was similar in the two groups. ” Forthis type of shoulder problem,addition of kinesiological tape to the exercise program does not give better results than you get with exercise alone, whether in the short, medium or long term. Patients do not heal faster, ”said the head of the study, Prof. Jean-Sébastien Roy. A surprising conclusion since the researchers point out that studies had reported an immediate effectof kinesiological tape for this type of injury.
The researcher also adds that “people feel better and they experience less pain when they move. We thought this effect would reverberate on the speed of healing, but that’s not what we observed ”. As to whether the application of kinesiological tape is an unnecessary intervention, the latter is therefore cautious. “It doesn’t cost much and it’s not invasive. The patient and the physiotherapist can discuss this. If the patient likes the “feeling” and feels better, there is nothing to opposeat the use of this ribbon. But, it’s like a Tylenol (Paracetamol) tablet. It relieves the pain, but you don’t heal faster, ”he concludes.