The effect of rigid taping with tension on mechanical displacement of the skin and change in pain perception

Shu-Mei CHEN, Sing Kai LO, Jill COOK

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Objectives: To investigate the effect of rigid taping that induces mechanical displacement of the skin on pain perception. Design: Single group experiment design with repeated measures. Methods: Twenty-three active healthy volunteers (12 men and 11 women) participated in the study. All participants received three different taping procedures: no tape, taping with tension, and taping without tension. The order of three taping conditions was randomised. Skin displacement was measured during taping with tension. A pressure algometer was used to measure the level of pain perception once before taping, and again after each taping condition, in one testing session. The participants were blind to the values of their pressure pain threshold (PPT) during the experimental period. Results: The mean ± SD skin displacement in the condition of taping with tension was 2.58 ± 0.49 cm. There were significant differences in PPT between taping with tension and taping without tension (mean difference (mean diff) ± standard error(SE) 36.43 ± 4.22 KPa, p = 0.000)) and no tape (mean diff ±SE 44.31 ± 3.13 KPa, p = 0.000). No significant difference in PPT between no tape and taping without tension was found (mean diff ±SE 7.88 ± 2.83 KPa, p = 0.067). Conclusions: Taping with tension increases the threshold of pressure pain perception. Therefore, stretch and compression caused by rigid taping with tension could disturb the nociceptive signal transmission and alter pain perception. Copyright © 2017 Published by Elsevier Ltd on behalf of Sports Medicine Australia.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)342-346
JournalJournal of Science and Medicine in Sport
Issue number4
Early online dateJul 2017
Publication statusPublished - 2018


Pain Perception
Pain Threshold
Sports Medicine
Healthy Volunteers


Chen, S.-M., Lo, S. K., & Cook, J. (2018). The effect of rigid taping with tension on mechanical displacement of the skin and change in pain perception. Journal of Science and Medicine in Sport, 21(4), 342-346. doi: 10.1016/j.jsams.2017.07.008


  • Taping
  • Algometer
  • Pressure pain threshold
  • Skin displacement