The Effect of Taping on Isometric Shoulder Strength and EMG Activity of the Shoulder during Functional Movements
By International Journal of Prevention and Treatment | 01 August 2017
Type:Systemic Review
Sample Size:30
Outcome:Positive


Objective

The purpose of this study was to compare the effects of Kinesio Tape (KT) to no tape on shoulder strength and electromyographic (EMG) activity of the teres minor (TM), infraspinatus (IS), and supraspinatus (SS) muscles when completing functional shoulder movements and resisted isometric testing for shoulder flexion, abduction, and external rotation.

Methods

Thirty healthy individuals performed three repetitions of reaching into flexion, abduction, and external rotation as well as static resisted isometric contractions with and without KT. The EMG activity was recorded using a Delsys Trigno™ Wireless EMG System. The mean maximal strength force (kg) and EMG activity (mV) was recorded for each of the trials.

Results

There was no significant interaction effect for muscle type and taping condition or main effects of taping condition on EMG activity during active shoulder flexion, abduction, and external rotation. There were significant main effects on measures of EMG activity for muscle type during active shoulder flexion (F(2, 171)=29.549, p=.0001, η2=.256), abduction (F(2, 171)=82.766, p=.0001 η2=.492), and external rotation (F(2, 171)=24.971, p=.0001, η2=.262). Post-hoc pairwise comparisons using a Bonferroni correction revealed significant differences between the SS and IS (p=.0001) and SS and TM (p=.0001) for shoulder flexion, abduction, and external rotation. There was no significant interaction effect for muscle type and taping condition on EMG activity or main effects for taping condition during resisted shoulder flexion, abduction, or external rotation. There were, however, main effects for muscle type on EMG measures for resisted shoulder flexion (F(2, 171)=21.379, p=.0001, η2=.20), abduction (F(2, 171)=48.361, p=.0001, η2=.361), and external rotation (F(2, 171)=5.884, p=.003, η2=.06). Post-hoc pairwise comparisons using a Bonferroni correction revealed significant differences for resisted shoulder flexion between the TM and IS (p=.0001) and SS (p=.0001); for resisted abduction between the TM and SS (p=.0001); and for resisted external rotation between the TM and SS (p=.0001). Paired samples t-tests revealed no significant difference in resisted isometric shoulder strength with and without tape for flexion, abduction, and external rotation.

Conclusion

The application of KT may assist clinicians in altering (facilitating or decreasing) specific rotator cuff muscle activity levels during functional movements and activities that require static isometric contractions but appears to be context specific to the muscle. Further research is warranted on the use of different types of tape during other shoulder movements or sport specific actions.

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