American Journal of Sports Science and Medicine
ISSN (Print): 2333-4592 ISSN (Online): 2333-4606 Website: Editor-in-chief: Ratko Pavlović
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American Journal of Sports Science and Medicine. 2016, 4(2), 33-38
DOI: 10.12691/ajssm-4-2-2
Open AccessArticle

Inhibitory Effect of the Kinesio Taping® Method on the Gastrocnemius Muscle

Elizabeth A. Davison1, Christopher T. Anderson1, Blake H. Ponist1, Drew M. Werner1, Mary E. Jacobs1, Adam J. Thompson1, and Melissa R. Cook2

1Athletic Training Education, Indiana Wesleyan University, Marion, 46953, USA

2Exercise Science, Indiana Wesleyan University, Marion, 46953, USA

Pub. Date: April 26, 2016

Cite this paper:
Elizabeth A. Davison, Christopher T. Anderson, Blake H. Ponist, Drew M. Werner, Mary E. Jacobs, Adam J. Thompson and Melissa R. Cook. Inhibitory Effect of the Kinesio Taping® Method on the Gastrocnemius Muscle. American Journal of Sports Science and Medicine. 2016; 4(2):33-38. doi: 10.12691/ajssm-4-2-2


The Kinesio Taping® method has been studied widely for its claims as a therapeutic taping technique designed to enhance performance and treat a variety of orthopedic, neuromuscular, neurological and other medical conditions. The applications of the Kinesio Taping® method are numerous and this intervention offers a broad range of research inquiry into its effectiveness. This study focuses on the performance benefits of the application of the Kinesio Taping® method. Specific attention was given to the inhibitory effects of the tape application on the gastrocnemius muscle group. Taping for muscle inhibition is indicated when a muscle is overactive as seen in muscular spasm. This study found that the Kinesio Taping® method was effective in inhibiting the muscle activity of the gastrocnemius muscle group without decreasing the performance output of the participants. This is clinically significant for clinicians who are progressing return to activity in patients who are recovering from a lower extremity injury, but still have some functional limitations from their injury. Purpose: This research study attempted to determine the effect of Kinesio® Tex Gold™ Tape on muscle inhibition when the tape is externally applied to a muscle group. Method: The participating athletes were measured by a Vertec© vertical jump device to determine height jumped as well as the BIOPAC Systems, Inc. (Goleta, CA) MP150 electromyography (EMG) machine to determine the amount of muscular activity. The participants were asked to complete nine single leg jumps on their dominant leg before being taped with Kinesio® Tex Gold™ Tape. The initial three jumps were performed as a warm-up, three more were performed while using the Vertec© to measure jump height, and the final three were performed while attached to the EMG machine to measure electrical activity in the gastrocnemius muscle group. After the initial jumps, each participant’s dominant calf was then taped with Kinesio® Tex Gold™ Tape. The tape was applied from insertion to origin to test the inhibitory effects of the Kinesio® Tex Gold™ Tape. After the tape was applied, each participant completed six more maximal vertical jumps on their dominant leg. The first three jumps measured muscular activity, and the last three jumps measured vertical jump height. Results: EMG results demonstrated a significant decrease in electrical activity. Electrical activity decreased for 20 participants (74%) while it increased for 7 participants (26%). The decrease in electrical activity found was (t (26) = 2.551, p = .017). The results of the vertical jump test using the Vertec© showed that in the 27 participants, 52% showed an increase in vertical jump height after the Kinesio® Tex Gold™ Tape was applied, 37% showed a decrease in vertical jump height after the application of the tape, and 11% of the participants had no change in vertical jump height. No significant difference was found in the vertical jump height between the without tape and with tape trials (t (26) = -1.120, p = .273). Conclusion: Based on this research, it can be concluded there is statistical evidence to show a difference in muscle activity after application of Kinesio® Tex Gold™ Tape. The values obtained from the EMG showed a majority of the participants had a decrease in muscle activity during a single leg vertical jump after being taped. The data found during the study supports the inhibitory basic application technique .

Kinesio Taping® vertical jump muscle activation muscle inhibition

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