Why do Olympians stick unusual tapes on their bodies?

Even at the Olympic Games in 2008 and 2012, the attention of spectators and fans was attracted by unusual multi-colored ribbons pasted on the body of athletes. As it turned out, their full name is kinesiological tapes or kinesio. What are they needed for?

According to one version, the tape was developed by a Japanese chiropractor in 1979. Then it was called Kinesio Tex Tape. Since then, her popularity has grown significantly. So just for the needs of the US Olympians, several thousand tons of ribbon were ordered.

Kinesio's website claims that their tape "reduces discomfort and facilitates lymphatic drainage through microscopic skin lifting." It goes on to say that it can be "glued over muscles to reduce pain, inflammation and relax over-tense and tired muscles, allowing them to work consistently throughout the day."

The strap provides comfortable external support to help the athlete stay active while recovering from injury. It creates neuromuscular feedback (proprioception) that relieves or significantly alleviates attacks of muscle and tendon pain.

A large number of athletes prefer these ribbons. And yet, what is their feature? Oddly enough, but many experts find it difficult to answer this question.

There are several comments on studies of the clinical use of kinesio taping in people with musculoskeletal disorders, which, by the way, gave practically zero results.

From another source, the British Journal of Sports Medicine, it follows that "kinesiotaping is much more effective than minimal intervention to reduce pain." In other studies, scientists have found a slight increase in the range of motion with tape.

There are also many who lean towards the purely psychological effect of Kinesio on athletes who simply believe that the tape helps them. (How can you not remember the placebo effect). Indeed, in the course of the competition, success brings an advantage in a split second, but here, as they say, all (permitted) means are good.