Sports Tape 101: What’s The Big Deal?

Even if you’re not a sports fan, there is a small chance you haven’t seen sports tape. Athletes such as Tennis Champion Novak Djokovic and Chicago Bulls point guard Derrick Rose. In fact, Derrick stirred a little controversy about year ago when he was asked by the NBA to stop wearing sports tape for his neck injury because apparently, the league has to approve everything the athletes can wear on the court.

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NBA: Chicago Bulls at Philadelphia 76ers

So what’s the deal with sports tape? Does it serve any real purpose?

The concept of Sports Tape was developed by Dr. Kenzo Kase in 1973. He is a chiropractor and acupuncturist specializing in treating patients with rheumatoid arthritis in the US and Japan. He developed the tape along with a unique taping method to help his patients deal with arthritis-induced pain and immobility.


The tape is applied taught on the skin which creates space between the skin and the muscle. This method is thought to support the 5 main therapeutic effects of sports tape which are:

  1. Improve lymphatic circulation. The space created between the skin and muscle allows better lymph drainage which decreases swelling.
  2. The nerves in affected area sends out signals to the brain that moving will mean pain. Sports tape decompresses the area relieves pressure on the nerves.
  3. By influencing particular muscle groups, sports tape can relieve pressure on joints.
  4. Sports tape can limit muscle movement to avoid strain and improve healing.
  5. In the event of an injury, sports tape can act as a temporary bridge so that athletes can continue to perform without worrying about further injuring themselves.kinesio_tape(2)

Today, sports tape is used for everything from turf toe to relieving carpal tunnel. It is used mainly to relieve pain and aid in muscle movement that may have been impaired with a previous injury. When applied by a trained therapist, sports tape can mean the difference between suffering from pain and going on to win a game.


However, critics of this technique say that there is a glaring lack of scientific evidence that support the therapeutic benefits of sports tape and most of its supposed paybacks are attributed to the placebo effect.  Dr. Kase admits that there is still a lot of room to grow and that they are still on the quest to find the science in sports taping. While the scientific jury’s still out on the benefits of using sports tape, there is no denying that the world’s most famous athletes are adamant in using in on the frontlines.

Suddora provides quality sports tape made form cotton and zinc oxide. It’s easy tear feature makes it handy for fast application. Available in black, white and gray.

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