Kinesiology taping in massage practice is growing—and for very good reason.
Pain reduction, proprioception, movement mechanics and postural re-education; managing the fluid dynamics of swelling after an injury, surgical procedure, or related to lymphedema—these are some of the effects that kinesiology taping can provide.
As a practitioner, using this versatile tool in your office complements your soft tissue work in tangible ways and adds a very real perception of value and benefit for your client. This not only opens a gateway for client education, it empowers clients’ self-care.
Any time I apply kinesiology tape to someone I am treating, I explain the general whys, hows and expectations so that it’s easily understood and that the client becomes an active and knowledgeable participant in their own health care.
This active role has huge benefits to the client’s sense of control and capability of participating in their treatment. The result is that your clients will be well-educated and will value the treatment they receive as well as its tangible effects long after they leave.
This added value can also become a boom to your business’ bottom line.
When it comes to adding retail to your practice, kinesiology tape is both simple and effective. There are a couple models of approach. The first step is to create a wholesale account with the kinesiology taping company that you use. This is often as easy as a short application process found on the company’s website. As a medical professional, you will be eligible for discounts, typically up to 40 percent off retail pricing, plus additional benefits depending on the company.
Once your wholesale account is set up, it’s as simple as placing your order. The volume of inventory you stock has everything to do with your client load, how much and how often you use tape in your treatments, and anticipating how much tape you will send home with clients.
A wholesale account gives you the option to customize the tape with your business name and logo. This is a huge bonus when it comes to the power of marketing your services.
Word-of-mouth plus the visual aspect of your work on clients speaking highly of their experience in your care is just smart business.
The retail model that I’ve used successfully in my practice is a simple one. The first session in my office is a combination of movement assessment and treatment. The cost of that session includes one standard 2-inch roll of kinesiology tape, typically with a retail value of $20.
Any taping application I apply comes out of that roll of tape the client has purchased until it’s time to purchase a new roll. Depending on the nature of the issue and the areas of treatment that single 2-inch roll of tape could last for several treatment sessions, or just a few sessions if I’m taping functional lines.
If the area of treatment is easily accessible to the client—such as a knee or ankle—or she has a family member who will be helping her with the taping applications for harder-to-reach areas such as the low back or shoulder, purchasing a roll of tape to take home for use between sessions is often recommended.
This is a great opportunity for additional client education. Teaching your clients how to apply kinesiology tape to their own bodies is a powerful way to establish a trusting and empowering relationship. A client who trusts you is a repeat client and one who refers family and friends; no amount of marketing can buy that.
This method has worked well in my clinic for the past five years and has produced countless referrals and repeat retail sales. It has also resulted in coaches of athletic teams contacting me because they’ve seen the tape on my clients and they want to find out if it could help their athletes.
Oftentimes this results in a request for me to speak at local high schools or colleges regarding movement mechanics and training—all because someone saw my business name on the kinesiology tape of a client praising the effects of my treatment.
Other methods of selling kinesiology tape are application based. Some practices will charge a set amount based on the area of treatment and how much tape is used. Smaller applications of tape, on the knee for example, cost less than an application that covers the erectors of the spine.
There are no set rules on how you charge for kinesiology taping. The limits are only the ones you set yourself. Learning how to apply kinesiology tape is a worthwhile pursuit when it comes to your continued education, as it will return your investment many times over.
Regardless of how you do it, it’s simply smart business to consider adding kinesiology tape sales to your services—not only for the benefit of your business, but for the benefit of the clients you treat on a daily basis.
About the Author
Stacey Thomas, L.M.T., S.F.M.A., F.M.S., N.K.T., C.F.-L2, has been dedicated to human movement and athletic performance since 1997 and certified as a sports massage therapist since 2005. She holds certification in Functional Movement Screen, Selective Functional Movement Assessment, Neurokinetic Therapy and CrossFit Level 2, as well as other training and soft tissue modalities. She is credentialed by educational organizations regarding human movement and soft tissue treatment. You can find her in one of her three Front Range clinics treating athletes or teaching courses for RockTape.
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