the effect of kinesio taping on vertical jump height and muscle electromyographic activity of the gastrocnemius and soleus in varsity athletes

MacDowall Ian, Sanzo Paolo, Zerpa Carlos

Literatuur type: 
case series
Publicatie jaar: 


Objective: To examine the effect of kinesio tape compared to no tape on vertical jump height and triceps surae electromyographic (EMG) muscle activity in healthy varsity athletes. Design: One group pre-test post-test design.

Twenty healthy varsity athletes (15 females and 5 males) between the ages of 18 and 30 (20.45 years ± 1.36) participated in this study. Each participant was a member of a varsity university basketball, volleyball and/or track and field team. After consent was obtained, the participant completed a Physical Activity Readiness Questionnaire (PAR-Q) and the Waterloo Footedness Questionnaire. The participant then completed a brief warm up and three practice trials of each jump technique. The jumping techniques included the countermovement vertical jump and static vertical jump. The skin at each sensor site was prepped and cleaned and a Delsys Trigno Wireless EMG System was attached to the lateral and medial gastrocnemius, and soleus muscles. After insuring that the EMG sensors were firmly attached, the individual performed a maximal vertical jump and the height of the vertical jump measured using a Vertec device. The participant performed three trials of a one-footed take off using only his/her dominant foot and a two-footed take off maximal countermovement vertical jump and static vertical jump. Each of these jumps were performed with a one footed take off using the dominant leg only, and then a two footed take off using both legs. Kinesio tape was then applied to the dominant leg using a combined taping technique (facilitatory and mechanical corrective). The maximal countermovement vertical jump and static vertical jump height was then re-tested. The mean rectified average EMG signal intensities and vertical jump heights were analyzed. A paired samples t-test was used to analyze the data comparing baseline to post-taping values with an alpha level set at p<.05.

There was a significant increase in mean vertical jump height (t(19)=-4.091, p=0.01) for the one legged static jump with the application of tape. The mean one legged static jump height without tape was 26.29 cm ± 9.12, while with tape it was 28.72 cm ± 7.37. There was no significant difference in the vertical jump height for the one legged static, one legged countermovement, or two legged countermovement jumps. There was also no significant difference in the EMG activity across the four jump types for the gastrocnemius or soleus muscles with and without tape.

The findings of this study have shown that the application of an Achilles tendinopathy kinesio taping technique increased the vertical jump height during a one legged static vertical jump. A trend of minor improvement was evident in all of the vertical jumps that were performed with tape. It was found that kinesio tape had no effect on EMG activity of the gastrocnemius or soleus muscles. The improvement in vertical jump height demonstrates that the application of kinesio tape may provide an individual with an athletic advantage in sports such as volleyball and basketball where jump height may be advantageous in certain sport specific situations.



International Journal of Sports Science 2015, 5(4): 162-170