Effect of patellar strap and sports tape on pain in patellar tendinopathy: A randomized controlled trial

Scand J Med Sci Sports. 2016 Oct;26(10):1217-24. doi: 10.1111/sms.12556. Epub 2015 Sep 17.


Numerous athletes with patellar tendinopathy (PT) use a patellar strap or sports tape during sports. This study's aim was to investigate the short-term effect of these orthoses on patellar tendon pain. Participants performed the single-leg decline squat, vertical jump test, and triple-hop test under four different conditions (patellar strap, sports tape, placebo, and control). Subsequently, participants practiced sports as usual for 2 weeks; during 1 week, they were assigned to one of the four conditions. Pain was measured with the visual analog scale (VAS). In total, 97 athletes with PT [61% male, age 27.0 (SD8.1), VISA-P 58.5 (SD12.7)] were analyzed. On the single-leg decline squat, the VAS pain score reduced significantly in the patellar strap (14 mm, P = 0.04) and the sports tape condition (13 mm, P = 0.04), compared with control, but not placebo. A significant decrease in VAS pain during sports was found in the sports tape (7 mm, P = 0.04) and placebo group (6 mm, P = 0.04). The VAS pain score two hours after sports decreased significantly in the patellar strap, sports tape and placebo group (8-mm, P < 0.001, 10 mm, P = 0.001 and 7 mm, P = 0.03, respectively). This study's findings indicate that an orthosis (including placebo tape) during sports can reduce pain in PT patients in the short term.

Keywords: Jumper's knee; brace; patellar tendon; prevention.

Publication types

  • Randomized Controlled Trial

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Athletic Tape*
  • Braces*
  • Exercise Test
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Musculoskeletal Pain / etiology
  • Musculoskeletal Pain / prevention & control*
  • Pain Measurement
  • Patellar Ligament*
  • Placebos
  • Sports
  • Tendinopathy / complications*
  • Young Adult


  • Placebos