Did anyone see the historic two-man bobsled final race on Monday night when American bobsledder Steve Holcomb broke a 62 year drought to capture the Olympic bronze medal?
What Cape Cod Rehab Physical Therapist Briana Lackenby PT DPT saw at the start of the race was the black tape that Holcomb was donning on his left calf.
This type of sports tape has many names: Rock Tape, Kinesio Tape, KT Tape etc. Unlike the old white athletic tape that only stabilized, this athletic tape has a stretch gradient and can be used for a number of injuries.
“The tape can be applied depending on the direction of pull to support a weak or injured muscle. It can be used to stretch a tight muscle and the tape can even be braided over swollen regions to help with fluid removal,” says Lackenby who has seen tremendous personal and professional success over the past year with its use.
“Tape can help you stay lose and reduce pain between your physical therapy and training sessions,” added Lackenby. The tape can be worn up to five days and can even be worn in the pool.
For Holcomb, the calf strain came while pushing off during the second heat on the first day of competition.
The start is super important in bobsled. To push off with a weak or injured leg could have potentially ruined Holcomb’s chances at a medal. After night one of competition, Holcomb met with trainers to receive treatments and to keep his strained calf loose. A combination of massage, electrical stimulation, acupuncture, and kinesiology tape got him ready for the final two runs.
When asked if he should drop out of the race, Holcomb said, “It’s four years to get to this point. I’m not going to be stopped by a little calf muscle.”
|Braided pattern used by Lackenby to reduce swelling|
Kinesiology tape can be used to treat a number of injuries and to enhance sports performance. Interested in learning more? Talk to your physical therapist or athletic trainer today!
Blog post by Jen Skiba.