Effect of Kinesio taping on Y-balance test performance and the associated leg muscle activation patterns in children with developmental coordination disorder: A randomized controlled trial

Timothy T.T. Yam, Peggy P.L. Or, Ada W.W. Ma, Shirley S.M. Fong, Man Sang Wong

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

5 Citations (Scopus)


Background: Children with developmental coordination disorder (DCD) have leg muscular deficits which negatively affects their dynamic postural stability. Kinesio tape (KT) could enhance muscle activation, postural control and functional activities in healthy individuals. Therefore, we hypothesized that the usage of KT may address the postural instability problem of children with DCD. Research question: To investigate the immediate effect of KT on dynamic postural stability and the associated lower limb muscle activity in children with DCD. Methods: Forty-nine children with DCD were recruited where twenty-five children were randomly assigned to the KT group (mean age = 8.18 ± 1.16 years) and twenty-four to the control group (mean age = 8.06 ± 0.93 years). KT group received KT application to the rectus femoris and gastrocnemius muscles whereas the control group received no intervention. Measurements were taken before and after the application of KT. Dynamic balance performance was measured using a lower quartile Y-balance test (YBT-LQ). Leg muscle peak activation and time-to-peak muscle activation of the dominant lower limb during YBT-LQ were measured by surface electromyography. Results: YBT-LQ composite score increased by 6.3% in the KT group at posttest (95% CI: -7.308, -2.480). In addition, a higher rectus femoris peak activation was illustrated for YBT-LQ anterior (32.5%; 95% CI: -48.619, -16.395) and posteromedial (24.6%; 95% CI: -42.631, -6.591) reach directions from pretest values in the KT group. Moreover, KT group exhibited a 38% (95% CI: 0.015, 2.983) longer gastrocnemius medialis time-to-peak duration for YBT-LQ posteromedial reach direction when compared to the control group. Significance: KT revealed an immediate beneficial effect on YBT-LQ performance. Application of KT also increased rectus femoris peak activation and lengthened the muscle time-to-peak duration for specific reach directions. Incorporating KT as an adjunct with dynamic balance training programme could be beneficial for children with DCD.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)388-396
Number of pages9
JournalGait and Posture
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2019


  • Developmental coordination disorder
  • Dynamic balance
  • Electromyography
  • Kinesiology tape
  • Postural stability

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biophysics
  • Orthopedics and Sports Medicine
  • Rehabilitation

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