Kinesio Taping for Back Pain: Frivolous Fad or Fantastic Fix?

Although it was invented in the 1970s, kinesio taping didn’t become a mainstream therapy until the mid-2000s. But once it started gaining popularity, everyone from Olympic athletes to office employees turned to the tape to try to solve their aches, pains, and athletic injuries.

Some professionals have questioned its ability to treat acute injuries, but the tape has been a welcome source of relief for patients with specific chronic conditions. According to a recent Journal of Physiotherapy article, back pain is one such condition that has the potential to benefit from kinesio taping.

What Exactly Is Kinesio Taping?

Kinesio taping is a rehabilitative taping method. The brightly colored tapes are applied by a chiropractor (or a certified clinical kinesio practitioner); once affixed to the body, they are designed to support tired muscles. Proponents also suggest that the method can help stimulate blood flow, correct misaligned joints, and improve range of motion.

Some physicians have criticized kinesio taping as a “trend” or a “fad.” It is a non-invasive, non-medicinal pain relief option – and some of the criticism comes from the fact that it is often used on injuries that it is not intended to treat. However, when used in conjunction with other rehabilitation strategies – such as therapeutic massage and chiropractic care – taping can help improve quality of life factors associated with certain conditions.

Can Kinesio Taping Really Help With Back Pain?

One such condition that responds especially well to kinesio taping is chronic non-specific lower back pain. In a 2012 randomized trial, patients who had the tape professionally applied reported a significant reduction in their discomfort. Additionally, they maintained these benefits for up to four weeks after the trial.

Have you ever tried kinesio taping for your back pain? If so, did you feel as though it helped improve your discomfort?

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