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General Wellbeing - Strapping and Taping cont...

In this newsletter, I'll be looking at one of the more 'conventional' Strapping techniques that I use. Unlike Kinesio tape, which I discussed last month, (click here to read August's newsletter) this month I'll be looking at a technique that uses traditional zinc oxide (ZO) tape. The use of ZO tape is fundamentally different, as it looks to compress, stabilise and reduce movement in injured tissues. Therefore, unlike Kinesio tape it doesn't stretch, or move with the body.

How-to-treat-plantar-fasciitisOne of the strappings I use the most with ZO tape is called the 'low dye' technique and is used to address pain caused by plantar fasciitis (commonly known as heel spurs). Plantar Fasciitis is the inflammation of the soft tissues in the sole of the foot and is common in athletes who have a tendency to 'heel strike'.

The strapping works well to provide temporary pain relief and help reduce inflammation. However, a permanent solution often requires a change in sports footwear from a specialist provider; who after doing a 'gait analysis' will be able to recommend the correct shoe.

How does it work?

The 'low dye' technique uses a particular pattern of ZO tape across the sole and sides of the foot, it helps for a more even transfer of the stress and weight; in turn this allows for the inflamed tissues to recover.

The low dye strapping technique can also be useful for temporary relief from poor kneecap alignment (this can be demonstrated by 'clicking' knees); if the cause of the knee problem is due to collapsed arches (also know as 'flat feet'). This is because the tape supports the arch of the foot, stopping it collapsing under weight bearing pressure, and in turn helping knee alignment. Therefore strapping the foot is cheap way of ascertaining whether orthotics, the traditional way of correcting collapsed arches, may help.



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