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#1998110 - 12/11/12 11:28 PM Kinesio tape!
3pianists Offline
Full Member

Registered: 03/31/09
Posts: 25
Hey folks! Have any of you heard of/used Kinesio tape for playing-related injuries?

The backstory--I'm a sophomore piano performance major. As a freshman, I developed tendinitis in four locations: DeQuervain's in both wrists and lateral epicondylitis in both elbows. There were a variety of contributing factors, and I tried a hodgepodge of therapies with doctors and therapists ranging from hacks to experts. Perhaps the most effective therapy I found was Kinesio tape. I know it's considered somewhat controversial, but I've personally experienced great results.

I had to skip the entire spring quarter of piano-related activities because of my injuries, but I'm now back at it and just successfully completed my first post-injury jury yesterday! yippie However, I'm still wearing tape for a minor flareup of lateral epicondylitis in my right elbow. I'm curious your thoughts on wearing tape while performing--has it been done? Would it be incredibly scandalous to wear it in, say, lime green or electric blue? Have you used the tape yourself?

Thanks for your inputs!
Sarah
_________________________
Your suspicions were right on: I'm a slightly deranged sophomore piano performance major minoring in math and physics, tutoring theory, aural skills, and calculus on the side, teaching piano lessons for milk money and sheer joy, working to live Aristotle's "examined life".

epektasis.tumblr.com

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#1998118 - 12/12/12 12:01 AM Re: Kinesio tape! [Re: 3pianists]
3pianists Offline
Full Member

Registered: 03/31/09
Posts: 25
And apologies if this topic has already been covered somewhere else--I checked a bit back and didn't see anything.
_________________________
Your suspicions were right on: I'm a slightly deranged sophomore piano performance major minoring in math and physics, tutoring theory, aural skills, and calculus on the side, teaching piano lessons for milk money and sheer joy, working to live Aristotle's "examined life".

epektasis.tumblr.com

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#1998161 - 12/12/12 02:20 AM Re: Kinesio tape! [Re: 3pianists]
MarkH Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/16/08
Posts: 853
Loc: Seattle, WA
Hi Sarah,

I really like your signature smile

My immediate response is, personally, no, I've never used any such thing, because I've never had a serious piano related injury (the few times I've ever felt like I was on the verge of tweaking something, I took a few days off and was fine). Most people will probably say, and I certainly do, that if you still have an injury that flares up occasionally, you should let yourself heal longer and deal with the root causes of the injury (tension, body position, etc). Especially being a sophomore with fewer performance obligations now than you will have in a year or two, you should make total healing a priority (even though this kind of waiting is excruciating). That being said, if kinesio tape really does help with this kind of thing, I can certainly see it being useful in I-injured-myself-two-days-before-my-senior-recital type situations.

Can you explain the sorts of motions that cause your elbow to flare up, and the way in which you apply the tape to reduce the pain?
_________________________
Currently Studying: Bach - English Suite No. 5; Beethoven - Op. 27 No. 1; Chopin - Op. 27 No. 1; Chopin - 3rd Scherzo

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#1998193 - 12/12/12 04:54 AM Re: Kinesio tape! [Re: 3pianists]
chopin_r_us Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/17/10
Posts: 874
Loc: UK
I've been wearing this around my elbow:

as a preventative measure when required (heavy finger work). I think it's very effective. How does yours differ?

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#1998288 - 12/12/12 11:04 AM Re: Kinesio tape! [Re: 3pianists]
CraigG Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/23/09
Posts: 162
Loc: Canada
I've used it for other applications (i.e. on my knees during 100km bike rides) and it can definitely work wonders. Maybe there is an application for forearms which could help reduce wrist tension? A physiotherapist specializing in sport related injury might be able to offer an opinion.
_________________________
Ignorance is not a point of view.

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#1998385 - 12/12/12 01:44 PM Re: Kinesio tape! [Re: CraigG]
chopin_r_us Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/17/10
Posts: 874
Loc: UK
Originally Posted By: CraigG
Maybe there is an application for forearms which could help reduce wrist tension?
Tension at the wrist (caused by lots of finger work) is why I wear support around the elbow.

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#1998447 - 12/12/12 03:58 PM Re: Kinesio tape! [Re: chopin_r_us]
3pianists Offline
Full Member

Registered: 03/31/09
Posts: 25
I'm working with a certified hand therapist and pianist--she's amazing and has taken me from being unable to play at all to an hour of practice without pain. I'm taping as she recommended--one y-strip attached on the back of of the hand and splitting over the wrist, stretched up the forearm with one tail passing over the lateral epicondyle and the other over the bulk of the muscle belly. I'd post pictures, but I'm not sure how to do that from mobile. *feels incompetent*

MarkH, regarding resting to heal, I did reach a point where I simply couldn't play at all, and rested totally for about a month. I've since worked my way up from just a couple of minutes to over an hour of painless playing. The amount of muscle tone and coordination I lost was unbelievable--it took months to be able to produce warm, rich tones again. Much current literature on treating performance-related injuries actually says that total rest tends to be a bad thing: musicians seem to lose more than they gain. Decreased practice time, though, is absolutely essential. And you're darn right about it being excruciating! wink

Movements that make it flare up at the piano seem to be scales (for an extended period of time) and playing in the low registers of the piano, even when not crossed over my left; I think it's just the angle of my arm to my body. Away from the piano, lifting (palm up worse than palm down) and anything that requires repeated flexing and extending are difficult. You wouldn't believe the troubles I've had with picking up my backpack! However, I'm pretty sure this flare up is caused by crazy neck and shoulder tension coming from an as-yet unexplained problem with the lymph nodes in my neck. Hitting the docs when I'm done with finals...

Thanks for your replies. smile
_________________________
Your suspicions were right on: I'm a slightly deranged sophomore piano performance major minoring in math and physics, tutoring theory, aural skills, and calculus on the side, teaching piano lessons for milk money and sheer joy, working to live Aristotle's "examined life".

epektasis.tumblr.com

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#1998663 - 12/12/12 11:28 PM Re: Kinesio tape! [Re: 3pianists]
AnneJ Offline
Full Member

Registered: 02/27/10
Posts: 48
Loc: Toronto, ON
You could try sports tape. It should be available at sports supply stores or pharmacies.

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#1999073 - 12/13/12 05:20 PM Re: Kinesio tape! [Re: AnneJ]
spanishbuddha Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/08/09
Posts: 2320
Loc: UK
Originally Posted By: AnneJ
You could try sports tape. It should be available at sports supply stores or pharmacies.

Yes you could and it's cheaper than Kinesio tape.

But sport tape is designed to support whereas Kinesio tape is not, quite the opposite in fact.

I have not tried it myself but it was clearly visible on many athletes during the Olympics, and my own sport of tennis has dozens of players wearing it at the major events.

Interesting to hear a personal story, I have been a sceptic. Because of the price of tape. smile

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#1999584 - 12/14/12 09:26 PM Re: Kinesio tape! [Re: 3pianists]
Arghhh Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/31/08
Posts: 1048
Sent you a PM

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