Strapping (often called Taping) is the use of adhesive bandage to support an injured body part, to limit pain or restrict range of motion. Although taping is widely used in the community, particularly in the sporting arena, there is mixed scientific evidence concerning its benefits.
Without a doubt however, taping has a number of potential uses. It may be used in injury prevention, biomechanical alignment, pain management, or for postural correction. Taping may also enhance proprioceptive feedback or awareness from the joint – for example if a taped ankle begins to roll in, the tape will provide feedback to the brain to contract the appropriate muscles and prevent the ankle rolling.
Care should be taken when using tape where there is:
- an allergy to the materials being used
- an active skin irritation or infection
- circulatory or nerve supply compromise
Types of conditions where Taping may be useful
- ankle ligament sprains
- plantar fasciitis
- knee ligament damage
- patella tendonitis
- patella femoral pain
- hamstring muscle tear
- tennis elbow
- shoulder injuries
- low back pain
It is important to see a physiotherapist to establish effective strapping techniques that will give maximum benefit and support.