A scientific study completed in 2005 by Atsushi Futakawa, Director of Tera Natural Physical Condition Clinic, demonstrated that Kinesio Tape is a valuable complimentary therapy for a variety of disorders often experienced by professional and non-professional dancers. The study, entitled “Treatment for the Disorders of Dancers: Analysis of the Effects of Kinesio Taping on the Movement of Dancers,” studied the movement habits and body structure of a social dancer via the video from a dance competition. The researcher in charge of the study then corrected the dance movements of the study subject, where required, using adjustment and Kinesio Tape application.
The following description of the study explains premise of the study and the process followed:
“The characteristic movements of dances … are associated with fatigue and disorders of the muscles.” The aim of the study was to maximize performance improvement through the use of Kinesio Tape therapy. The researcher analyzed a dance contest video, studying the movements of a social dancer and determining the specific issues and areas of improvement that could benefit dancers. Kinesio Tape application helped increase muscle power and poor movement habits were corrected with other appropriate treatment, “so the consciousness and body movements of dancers became unified, and the dancers’ performance improved.”
The year-long study focused on the manner in which both body and body consciousness could be altered and dance quality improved by using Kinesio Tape therapy in conjunction with other forms of treatment, such as physical manipulation, cryotherapy, fascial therapy and fascial adjustment. Various research studies have indicated that Kinesio Tape can serve as a beneficial adjunct to other therapies.
The 31-year-old male subject, an unmarried dance instructor who had been teaching dance for 12 years, stated that his major complaint was that when his muscles experienced fatigue, he was unable to execute the movements in the videotaped image. Specific parts of the body experiencing difficulty were the left shoulder (which he held down during dance-related fatigue) and the lumbar region of the back (where fatigue settled) – both body parts that respond well to Kinesio Tape therapy. The dancer’s main symptoms were tension in the hip as well as in certain specific trunk muscles, loss of the hip curvature common to social dance, and ankle stiffness, all of which led to a marked decline in dance performance.
Muscle tests performed on various parts of the body yielded results which were plotted on a chart for analytical purposes. Results were color-coded based on several factors. Appropriate therapies were then applied to each muscle group.
Specific Kinesio Tape application goals included
- Improving overall dance performance
- Maximizing muscle strength
- Increasing joint range of motion
- Improving fatigue-related decreases in neurotransmission
- Maintaining a level left shoulder and centering body weight directly over the lumbar region while dancing with a partner
Muscle strength was enhanced by using the treatments mentioned above along with Kinesio Tape application protocols. The combined Kinesio Tape therapy regimen brought about a variety of improvements in dancer movement, body alignment, and other related factors, which can be reviewed by reading the “Discussion after treatment” and “Conclusion” sections of the study .