The functional bandage is a technique that consists of applying a specific bandage to the injury that our patient presents, and that prevents us from repeating only the movement that caused his injury. In this way we manage to contain the lesioned joint gesture without altering the rest of the joint movements.
Functional bandages have the advantage of avoiding total immobilization (plaster) of the muscles and joints. What is intended with the functional bandage is to block harmful movements for the joint at certain times of recovery, treatment or healing.
In sports winnipeg physiotherapy, a discipline of which we are experts in our clinic, it represents a fundamental therapeutic weapon.
These bandages allow partial mobility for the affected joint. In addition, they are applied in a studied way, taking into account correct biomechanics of the rest of the joints that participate in the gesture that we control. Thanks to all this, we shorten the recovery times and the functional results are much better. At the same time, we facilitate that the motor pattern is not lost, nor compensatory movements appear (such as lameness) that later would have to be corrected.
How is the functional bandage treatment performed?
The functional bandage is done with strips of tape that adhere to the skin, thus canceling the force vectors of the gesture that we want to block.
As it is a “custom bandage” it allows us to precisely regulate the amount of movement we want to block depending on the evolution. In the same way, since it is personalized, we adjust it to each body, type, size and volume. The bandage can be elastic or rigid depending on the amount of movement that we want to limit.
When is the functional bandage used?
This technique is used as an option within the physiotherapy treatment part, applied after the rest of the techniques in the session. Also, outside of the treatment of an injury, it is used to prevent and avoid relapses of certain injuries, to correct dysfunctions, immobilize certain gestures that cause pain or irradiation of discomfort through the body and, also, to compress a wound and avoid bleeding.
The most common example of a functional bandage is seen in sports. For example, on the ankles of footballers (functional bandage for ankle sprain), on Nadal’s knee (to control his patellar tendonitis or for lateral stability with a functional knee bandage like the one in the photo) or on the fingers of volleyball players (to avoid twisting them).
This shows that bandages allow the mobility we seek, protecting specific gestures.