For best results, have your healthcare provider tape your injury before you try to on your own. First clean and dry the area to be taped, and trim or shave excess hair. Cut the corners on the ends of the tape to round them so the tape doesn’t catch on clothing or peel off.
Slightly different recommendations exist for how to tape tennis elbow with KT, so practice with your physical therapist or chiropractor, or check out multiple videos available online.
Here are some general instructions on how to tape tennis elbow with KT, using a vertical strip and a horizontal strip.
Vertical from mid-forearm to mid-tricep
- Extend the arm in front of you with wrist flexed toward the ground and cut a piece of tape the length of the mid-forearm to the middle of the upper arm/tricep.
- With the edges rounded, cut a two-inch anchor at the bottom.
- Apply the tape at the forearm, rub in the anchor, and pull to achieve about a 20% to 50% stretch.
- Continue to rub the tape up to the mid-tricep; cut another anchor here and rub to warm adhesive. The tape should cover the lateral epicondyle – the bony protuberance on the outside of the elbow.
Horizontal strip at elbow joint
- Cut another shorter piece of tape that lie horizontally from the inside to the outside of the elbow joint.
- Stretch the tape 20% to 50% so that the middle lies over the epicondyle and that each end touches skin (and not the vertical strip of tape).
- Rub in the tape to warm the adhesive and ensure that it lies flat.
KT is water-resistant and typically can be worn for several days. When removing the tape, consider the following:
- Apply some oil (like baby oil or olive oil) or lotion on top of the tape to loosen the strip.
- Nudge up one end of the strip, and press down on your skin to separate it from the tape.
- Pull the tape back against itself, rather than straight up away from you. Compress skin gently while pulling the tape back in the direction of the end tab.
- Walk your fingers along your skin as you go.
- Remove it slowly. Don’t yank.
To reiterate, KT is a helpful supplement that is most effective when used in conjunction with other tennis elbow treatments that address the root cause of the injury, such as the new Fiix Elbow from Stā Active.
This wearable device automates a proven physical therapy treatment called instrument-assisted soft tissue manipulation (IASTM), and is easy to use for 10 minutes per day, three times per week for eight weeks. In a patient trial of the Fiix Elbow, 96 percent of participants experienced reduced pain, with an 85 percent increase in grip strength and a 76 percent improvement in functional activities.