This week we take a closer look at another popular kinesiology tape called KT Tape.
Earlier this year one of our writers, Silke, wrote a detailed review on the kinesiology tape called Rocktape.
In case you’re not familiar with the product, Rocktape is the colouful tape you would have probably seen many competitors wearing all over their bodies at the recent CrossFit Games.
With kinesiology tape becoming more popular in the functional fitness world, I thought it would be good to give our readers a review of a similar, rival product, called KT Tape.
Just like Rocktape, KT Tape is a stretchy, kinesiology tape designed to target pain relief by relieving pressure and increasing circulation to help speed up recovery.
According to their website:
“KT Tape is lightweight, comfortable to wear, and used to treat and prevent hundreds of common injuries such as knee pain, shin splints, and tennis elbow. KT Tape not only looks good, it provides 24 hour relief per application for days at a time and can be worn in water.”
I was introduced to KT Tape for the first time this year when I was training in Los Angeles. At the time, Rocktape was the only type of kinesiology tape I knew anything about, so I was more than interested to give it a go.
Over the past few months I have used KT Tape on my injured knee, wrists, ankle, ribs and shoulders, and have had a positive experience with the product.
Here is a detailed look at what I liked, and didn’t like so much about KT Tape:
Individual Strips – Unlike Rocktape, which comes in one long, rectangle strip, a roll KT Tape is actually made up of individual 10-inch strips. Each strip is held together by a preforated edge and can be pulled apart with ease. This means you don’t need to use scissors to cut each strip, and each strip you use is a lot smoother, and less frayed than it would be if you were cutting them.
Rounded Corners – Each individual strip of KT Tape is also designed with rounded corners. This reduces the chance of the tape catching on clothing or pulling away the skin like sharp corners can often do.
Split Center – One of the features I liked most about KT Tape was it’s split centers. Each individual strip has a preforated split down the middle, making it easier to apply to certain areas of your body. For example, if you wanted to use KT Tape to address a hand or wrist injury, it may be easier to split a strip in half. In addition, If you wanted to use KT Tape on your fingers, you can simply tear a standard strip in half, instead of having to buy thinner tape.
Great Stick – I have used KT Tape on many parts of my body, and I have found the stick to be as good, if not better than Rocktape’s stick. I slept, showered and trained wearing the tape, and it was only after 3 – 4 days when I started to find the tape fraying a little bit and losing it’s stick.
Detailed Instructional Videos – Without instructional videos, using kinesiology tape can be a nightmare. Thankfully, KT Tape has a library of in-depth instructional videos for taping all parts of the human body. You can find the videos on their website and on You Tube channel.
Comfortable – I know it’s only tape, but KT Tape is comfortable to wear. I barely even noticed I was wearing it for most the time, and not once did I become agitated or annoyed by it.
Diverse Range – KT Tape has a wide range of styles and designs. There is an abundance of vibrant colours and styles to suit anyone.
Effectiveness – While plenty of athletes swear by KT Tape and other kinesiology brands like Rocktape, it is still debatable how effective they are. The reality is, the tape won’t do any harm to you, so it’s worth a try, although don’t expect it to deliver immediate results.
Price – KT Tape sells for about the same price as Rocktape. You can pick up a roll for around $15-$19, making it one of the more expensive tape products on the market.
Tricky to Apply – Although there are a number of in-depth instructional videos on how to apply KT Tape, it can still be a difficult process. Chances are you will probably make errors in your first few attempts of taping, and it does take some time getting used to the cutting and applying of the tape. So be prepared to waste a bit of tape if you’re a first time user.
After using both Rocktape and KT Tape over the past few months, I’d probably have to say KT Tape is a slightly better product. While they are both very similar, and both decent products, KT Tape just ticks a few more boxes.
I particularly liked the design and extra features each roll of KT Tape had. The individual strips were very handy, and made the taping process a lot easier, while the rounded corners ensured each strip would last longer and have a more effective stick.
In addition, KT Tape has a wide range of instructional videos making it so much easier to use the product.
If you have a niggling injury that’s causing you problems during training, or you’re trying to recover from an injury in time for a competition, KT Tape may just give you the assistance you need.
Like I said before, there is a lot of debate about it’s effectiveness, but if you have the money to spend, you may as well give it a go.
And even if you don’t get the results you wanted, at least you get to look stylish in your favourite coloured tape!
Here’s one of the many instructional videos on how to apply KT Tape: