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Target Your Largest Organ to Heal Muscles

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Did you know the skin is the largest organ in the body? Why not target it to heal? Taping or strapping has been used for several generations in a variety of ways to improve muscle function, reduce pain, and even to help prevent injuries.

taping for sports injury In the 2012 summer Olympics, kinesio taping was seen on many volleyball players, gymnasts, and basketball players. Many viewers were unsure if this bright pink or blue tape was just for show or if it was for an athletic purpose. But the kinesio tape seen on the Olympic competitors definitely added support for the body part it was on, and as mentioned before, could have prevented an injury.

This type of taping is not just used on athletes; it is also used to help with muscle re-education. It is great for improving bad posture, which often leads to chronic pain and muscle soreness. For many people it is difficult to change how they hold their bodies when they've spent years forwarding their head too much or rounding their shoulders.

A postural strapping can be applied to the mid-back, between the shoulder blades to help the individual maintain a “proper” posture. This particular tape can stay on for 5 days, even through showering and sweating. Being that the tape can stay on for several days, this allows the muscles to become re-educated so they can maintain the proper position. The tape also serves as a tactile cue, meaning it will remind you when you are moving out of the proper position.

This tape also helps people with low back pain. When the tape is applied to the low back it reminds people not to bend forward, which reduces low back pain. Tape can be applied to any part of the body for added support and even to reduce swelling. Lymphatic strapping has been proven to take down swelling in a given area and reduce pain.

Remember this type of treatment is for people of all ages and easily applied to any body part. Ask your physical therapist about kinesio taping or strapping to see if this would be a beneficial intervention for you!

Nancy Whelan,PT is the owner and director of the West Palm Beach Physical Therapy Center. She has 31 years of experience in the practice of Physical Therapy.


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