It comes in colors of blue, green and orange. You’ve seen it many a times on their shoulders and thighs and everywhere in between and wondered why the hell these elite athletes need to bind themselves in this ugly way with coloured tapes. As we discovered, this tape is more meaningful for an athlete than it looks.
The simple-looking tape is called kinesiology tape and is used to give rest to stressed muscles in the body. The way it works is this:
The start and end points of a stressed muscle are identified by a physiotherapist in the lab. Both ends are then tied together with the Kinesio tape which relives the stress on the muscles by limiting its movement further (by lifting the skin), even if the athlete goes through his/her daily training routines.
Futher clarifying the usefulness of the tape, this is how one of the websites of a major brand selling these tapes, describe it –
“Alleviate discomfort and facilitate lymphatic drainage by microscopically lifting the skin. [The Kinesio Tape can be] applied over muscles to reduce pain and inflammation, relax overused or tired muscles, and support muscles in movement on a 24-hour-a-day basis.”
Various athletes have been using this tape for some time now, including wrestlers. With the advancement in science and technology making the Olympic sports more and more complex with each edition, we wonder what former athletes, who used to train barefoot in sweltering heat, would say about these fancy accessories.