Acupressure Taping: A New Therapeutic Method
Acupressure taping is a new therapeutic method that uses flexible tape bandages on the basis of the theory of acupuncture.
The word acupressure combines the prefix “acu-” from the word acupuncture and the word pressure. An acupressure massage therapist uses finger pressure on the same points in which an acupuncturist inserts needles. In acupressure taping, the elastic tape applies subtle pressure to the taped area, often stimulating acupuncture points related to the area where the patient feels pain. The term “acupressure taping” thus indicates that this is a new therapeutic method that establishes a connection between the theory of acupuncture and the practice of kinesio-taping.
The difference between kinesio-taping and acupressure taping can be explained in this fashion: In kinesio-taping, the tapes are attached to the immediate area of a muscle, ligament, or joint that is in pain. In acupressure taping, along with these specific anatomical aspects at the locus of pain, the diagnostic and therapeutic rules of traditional Chinese medicine and acupuncture, as well as the manual medical approach of osteopathy, also are taken into consideration when placing the tapes. When these holistic methods of understanding are applied to the tape placements, the specific areas of the body that are taped may not necessarily be perceived as problem areas by the patient, yet tensions or blocked energy in these areas may be considered to have, in fact, an important causal relationship to the disorders or pain actually felt in other parts of the body.
Unlike conventional medicine, which uses tape as nonelastic, restrictive bandages for the purpose of binding and immobilizing joints, acupressure taping does not inhibit freedom of movement.
12. Cervical Spine Tape
~ Pain in the area of the cervical spine
~ Ringing in the ear (tinnitus)
~ Pain in the area of the elbow
~ Tennis elbow
~ Golfer’s elbow
~ Pain in the area of the wrist
~ Carpal tunnel syndrome (numbness in the area of the hand)
Number and Length of Tapes
Number of Tapes: 2
Measuring the Tape:
~ First strip of tape: Runs from the upper thoracic spine to the hairline.
Important: Three quarters of the length of the tape should be cut down the middle with a pair of scissors. Both ends should be rounded off.
~ Second strip of tape: Runs from the middle of the right shoulder, across the back just below the neck, to the middle of the left shoulder.
Important: Fold the second strip of tape at the halfway point of its length and crease it well so that you can clearly see its middle point.
Tip: Do a preliminary stretching of the muscles and joints so you can measure the length of the tape strips exactly.
Preliminary Stretching and Attachment of the Tape
~ Bend your head forward with your chin reaching as far as possible toward the breastbone, which will make the vertebral process at the base of the cervical spine visible.
Attaching the Tape
~ Attach the first strip of tape at the upper part of the thoracic spine, beginning with the uncut end. Attach the left portion of the cut strip of tape on the left side of the spine up to the hairline, slightly left of center.
~ Attach the right portion of the cut tape on the right side of the spine up to the hairline, slightly right of center.
~ Attach the second strip of tape across the first strip at the transition from the cervical spine to the thoracic spine. The vertebral process of the cervical spine can be seen or felt easily as described in the preliminary stretching instructions. Use the middle fold on the second strip of tape to center it on the vertebral process. Attach the tape in a curve running right and left to the middle of each shoulder.
~ The transition points between the different regions of the spine are prone to disorders, so it is important that the second strip of tape completely cover the area of transition from the cervical spine to the thoracic spine.
~ The cervical spine tape can also be used with the two strips of cervical spine lymph tape.