Who better to talk to us about the perils of arm pump than Isla Scott? Working as the lead physiotherapist for the Isle of Man TT, Isla has developed a unique application for arm pump that has become become a firm favorite with the riders.
In this blog Isla discusses the reasoning behind its creation and how you can replicate it for your athletes.
Unsurprisingly, Arm Pump is the most common problem we deal with at the TT every year, alongside Neck Pain. With the high speeds and constant vibration through the forearms, arm pump is a huge issue for many riders due to excessive forced contraction through the forearms for such a sustained period of time.
Arm pump is caused by a restriction of blood flow through the forearms, often as a by-product of fatigue through the forearm muscles caused by the constant constrictive force that must be applied through them when riding. As the blood cannot be cleared quickly enough, excessive blood pools within the forearms resulting in forearms that feel hard / pumped.
Kinesiology Taping is thought to aid the blood and lymphatic flow in the area, which may help to prevent this excessive build up of blood and prevent arm pump from setting in.
This arm pump application is one that has been modified and changed many times since we first started using tape back at the 2016 TT. We base any change on rider feedback with the aim of making the tape application work as effectively as possible whilst being as comfortable for the rider.
This is our most commonly requested application and had seen incredible results in preventing and/or delaying the onset of arm pump symptoms when riding the TT.
We use opposing colours so the race medics can see the pattern and remove it easily if needed. They can see where sections start and finish with a contrast. The riders just think it looks groovy, but safety is the biggest reason.
You'll need to cut two strips of tape, and turn them both into a 4-tail fan. You can see how to do this HERE.
Written by Isla Scott. Owner of Scott Physiotherapy and Lead Physiotherapist for the Isle of Man TT.
The Scott Physiotherapy team is made up of volunteer therapists. In 2019 these were: Isla Scott, Claire Frost, Emma Marsh, Danielle Ashburner, Andy Buckley, Henri Toone, Sue Hunt, Louise Quirk and Fiona Christian.
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