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The Effect of Rocktape on Rating of Perceived Exertion and Cycling Efficiency

Miller, Michael G.; Michael, Timothy J.; Nicholson, Karrie S.; Petro, Rebecca V.; Hanson, Nicholas J.; Prater, Daryl R.

The Journal of Strength & Conditioning Research: September 2015 - Volume 29 - Issue 9 - p 2608–2612
doi: 10.1519/JSC.0000000000000901
Original Research

Miller, MG, Michael, TJ, Nicholson, KS, Petro, RV, Hanson, NJ, and Prater, DR. The effect of rocktape on rating of perceived exertion and cycling efficiency. J Strength Cond Res 29(9): 2608–2612, 2015—The purpose of this study was to investigate the effects of Rocktape (RT), a type of kinesiology tape, on perceived exertion and cycling efficiency. Eighteen recreational cyclists volunteered as subjects for this study. Four experimental conditions were used: (a) 60% V[Combining Dot Above]O2peak with RT, (b) 60% V[Combining Dot Above]O2peak without RT, (c) 80% V[Combining Dot Above]O2peak with RT, and (d) 80% V[Combining Dot Above]O2peak without RT. The Borg rating of perceived exertion (RPE) scale was used to evaluate subjective exertion during the cycling bouts. Overall RPE and leg, arm, and chest RPEs were obtained (RPE-O, RPE-L, RPE-A, and RPE-C, respectively). Gross cycling efficiency was determined by calculating the ratio of the amount of work performed to the energy expended. Repeated-measures analysis of variance was used to investigate the differences between the 2 intensities and 2 tape conditions. There were main effects of intensity (p < 0.001) and tape (p = 0.02) found for the RPE-O, with RPE-C showing similar results for intensity (p < 0.001) and tape (p = 0.02). Similar findings were present for the RPE-C, and main effects of intensity (p < 0.001) and tape (p = 0.02) were discovered. A significant main effect of intensity was found for efficiency (p = 0.03), with the 80% intensity condition showing a greater level of efficiency than the 60% intensity condition. However, the use of RT did not increase gross efficiency (p = 0.61). The main finding in this study was that subjects reported a lower level of exertion overall and at the chest, which may lead to increases in overall performance of these athletes. The use of RT before athletic events should not be discouraged.

Department of Human Performance and Health Education, Western Michigan University, Kalamazoo, Michigan

Address correspondence to Michael G. Miller,

Copyright © 2015 by the National Strength & Conditioning Association.