How Kinesio Taping Works For Injuries

Kinesio Taping Injury Physical Therapy

Most of you have probably seen athletes with tape attached to various parts of their bodies, like their necks, backs, arms, or legs. It’s an elastic form of tape called Kinesio tape and it’s used to stabilize muscles in a specific area. Although it’s commonly used by athletes, anyone with an injury can use Kinesio Tape to provide some extra support. Being taped still allows you to move, just in a controlled way that gives your muscles and ligaments a chance to heal. Taping around an injury can be a great tool for someone recovering from an injury or trying to train through one.

Keeping Your Injury Stabilized

Kinesio tape can either allow you to move better or restrict movement so you’re comfortable as you’re healing. Applying Kinesio tape to an injured, sprained, or strained area works to stabilize and take pressure off of the injury. That means that if you want to keep moving you can—but you also won’t move enough to put strain on your injury. It can be applied to injuries all over the body, with the most common athletic injuries being around the ankles, knees, shoulders, and even the neck. It’s used as a low level stabilization technique to help get the injured muscle or joint in a more supported position in the body. For example, if you’re getting over an ankle injury and no longer need a brace or boot, Kinesio tape could be applied to the outside of your ankle for additional support. Besides just giving your injury extra support, taping also works by giving your injury a chance to heal. If you’ve hurt your knee, taping around it could take pressure off of the knee joint by helping with support. That way, inflammation in that area is reduced and it gives a chance for the injured area to restore and heal.

Alignment & Support For Your Limbs

Kinesio taping can also be used to align certain joints and muscles to prevent further injury. For example, if you’ve hurt your ankle, you’re putting your knees at risk for getting injured as well since your body is off balance. If you’re working through an injured ankle and feel weakness or wobbliness around the joint, taping the outside of the ankle a specific way will allow it to align better with the rest of your leg. Having correct alignment can also work to decrease pain and help the joints and tightened muscles recover from activities. It also has added neuromuscular benefits simply by making you more aware of your movements and posture. Since you’re injured muscle is Kinesio taped into proper alignment, you’re re-educating your movement patterns.

Find A Taping Expert For Your Needs

With Kinesio taping, it’s key that you go to someone who has a background in kinesiology, anatomy, and physiology to apply taping techniques to injuries. It may look simple, but there are several different taping techniques, combinations, and tension strengths that have to be applied above specific muscles or joints. Taping yourself is also difficult, especially if your injury is in a hard to reach area. If you’ve been injured and are using Kinesio tape in the meantime as you continue with training, keep in mind that you need to get checked out by a medical professional to treat your condition. It’s important to know that Kinesio taping is just another tool in your treatment toolbox when it comes to recovering from an injury. It’s an effective short-term solution that’s used to relieve strain and pain from an area of injury. To completely resolve the source of your pain, Kinesio taping should be in conjunction with a full-fledged treatment program.

Will Blake Bortles miss Week 6 with an AC Sprain?

Fantasy Football Injury of the Week:  How bad is Blake Bortles Grade I AC Sprain?

Blake Bortles has not typically been on the radar of many fantasy players since he joined the league in 2014.  However in 2015 he has had a sneaky good start to the season despite Jacksonville’s 1-4 record.  In my Yahoo league, he is currently the 7th best QB.  He has better numbers this year than our very own Peyton Manning (by a longshot) and fantasy studs like Drew Brees and Matt Ryan.

Unfortunately, Bortles may suffer a bit of a setback if he is forced to miss Week 6 against Houston.  Bortles suffered a Grade/Type 1 acromioclavicular (AC) joint sprain of his throwing shoulder at some point during Jacksonville’s week 5 loss to the Buccaneers.  Anytime a quarterback sustains an injury to the throwing shoulder it can be a scary situation.  Fortunately for Bortles, a grade one AC sprain leaves us optimistic that he will be able to play this week and here’s why.

What’s the difference between Grade 1, 2, and 3 AC Sprains?

An AC sprain is typically graded in its severity from a one to a three.  It easy to visualize the severity of an AC sprain in the graphic below:

ACJointSeperation-pic2©

A grade/type 1 sprain is mild or partial injury to the joint ligaments or capsule.  In this grade there is a slight tear or sprain of the acromioclavicular ligament.  This ligament helps to stabilize the AC joint and ultimately the shoulder itself.  Bortles likely will rest the shoulder this week and participate in physical therapy everyday to retain his range of motion, strength, and help control the pain with modalities like the Gameready ice machine:

File_000(note: this is not Blake Bortles)

A grade/type 2 sprain is a more significant tear of the acromioclavicular ligament as well the ligament below the clavicle called the coracoclavicular ligament.  

A grade/type 3 sprain is a severe injury to the shoulder.  In this situation, both acromioclavicular and coracoclavicular ligaments are completely torn.  The shoulder is very unstable and an athlete will often choose to have surgery to stabilize the joint by placing a screw or looped suture into the collar bone to anchor it back down.  This grade of injury will mean the player misses weeks or months of their sport.

So What’s the Prognosis?

Fortunately for Bortles he has been diagnosed with the most mild form of an AC sprain, a grade one.  Early in the week his shoulder probably felt sore and a little weak or unstable  He may have had some difficulty reaching overhead or across his body and lifting activities might have been uncomfortable.  Kinesiotaping can be helpful in giving stability and pain relief during this phase of recovery.

 

With daily physical therapy rehab, Bortles’ symptoms will likely improve significantly or resolve completely by Sunday.  

Prediction: Blake Bortles is able to play in Week 6 against Houston