You've probably seen quite a lot of tape on the Rugby pitch recently, and will be seeing more in the next few days! But what is it?
The 3 most popular tapes in Rugby are EAB, Zinc Oxide and Kinesiology Tape.
Traditional tapes, such as Zinc Oxide and EAB are designed to 'lock-down' and immobilise joints, or provide compression. They help to prevent painful movements by restricting the amount that an area can move, or stabilise areas that are put under heavy stress during sport (such as ankles and knees).
EAB stands for Elastic Adhesive Bandage, it is a stretchy wrap that contains adhesive to stick the tape to the skin or itself. It's used for compression and support, and you'll see if most often wrapped around the Lower Quad, Knee and Ears for support and protection.
Zinc Oxide tapes can be used when movement makes the issue worse or very rigid support is needed to keep a joint in place. Think wrists and ankles!
Kinesiology tapes are designed to facilitate movement - kinesiology literally means movement - so are designed to stretch and move with the body, providing dynamic support and enabling better neural feedback. You'll often see these tapes in bright or team colours.