Kinesio taping of the deltoid does not reduce fatigue induced deficits in shoulder joint position sense

Clin Biomech (Bristol, Avon). 2015 Nov;30(9):903-7. doi: 10.1016/j.clinbiomech.2015.07.011. Epub 2015 Aug 8.


Background: Muscle fatigue is known to decrease shoulder proprioceptive acuity, potentially contributing to injuries. It has been suggested that Kinesio taping can improve proprioception. Therefore, the aim of this study was to investigate the effects of Kinesio taping on shoulder joint position sense after muscle fatigue.

Methods: Twenty-four healthy subjects were evaluated in a randomized, crossover, single-blind study design. Shoulder joint position sense was assessed during active repositioning tests at the target angles of 50°, 70° and 90° of arm elevation in scapular plane, in three sessions: control (no taping), Kinesio taping (Kinesio taping applied over the deltoid muscle with tension) and sham (Kinesio taping applied over deltoid without tension). Joint position sense was assessed three times: before taping; following taping application or rest, in the control session; and following a fatigue protocol. The constant error (repositioned angle-target angle) was considered for statistical analysis, using a 3-way repeated-measure ANOVA (within subject factors: taping, time and target angle).

Findings: There was no interaction or main effect involving taping. An interaction between time and angle was found and the simple effect showed that the constant error increased following fatigue at 70° and 90°, but not at 50°.

Interpretation: The results of this study does not support the use of Kinesio taping applied over the deltoid muscle for compensating or preventing shoulder joint position sense deficits caused by muscle fatigue of shoulder abductors.

Keywords: Muscle fatigue; Proprioception; Sensorimotor system; Shoulder.

Publication types

  • Randomized Controlled Trial
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Athletic Tape*
  • Cross-Over Studies
  • Deltoid Muscle / physiology*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Muscle Fatigue / physiology*
  • Proprioception / physiology*
  • Shoulder Joint / physiology*
  • Single-Blind Method
  • Young Adult