How to Tape Your Ankle for Soccer

As much of interesting sport soccer is, it also comes with its fair share of injuries. About 2 out of 10 times an injury during the game involves trauma to the ankle. Therefore, it is important to tape your ankle before a game to provide support, stability, and compression, and also to provide a protective layer to absorb impact from trauma. Go through our article to know more about ‘ How to Tape Your Ankle for Soccer

Now, while taping, the taped ankle can’t be too tight or too loose as to not being able to provide sufficient support. This is why we are here to tell you just the easiest way you can tape your ankles while playing soccer.

How to Tape Your Ankle for Soccer

Types of Tape - How to Tape Your Ankle for Soccer

  1. Athletic tape 
  2. Kinesio tape

1. Athletic Tape - How to Tape Your Ankle for Soccer

The purpose of Athletic Tape is to limit movement. They can’t be stretched, so this is the best option if you want to keep your ankle rigid such as providing support to prevent injury or stabilizing an injured ankle.

Due to the non-stretchable nature of this tape, it is suggested to not wear athletic for a long during of time as it can affect blood circulation.

2. Kinesio Tape - How to Tape Your Ankle for Soccer

Unlike athletic tape, Kinesio tape is more stretchy, therefore, suited for when you want more mobility and motion of the ankle but also dynamic support. Kinesio tape is meant for you if your ankles are not stable or have a previous ankle injury.

Due to the neutral feedback, Kinesio tapes are the go to choice for muscle injuries. Also, Kinesio tapes can be kept on much longer, usually up to 5 days. This is because the stretchy material is waterproof and allows free flow of blood. So can keep the tape on and go about your day without any worries.

Now that you know about the two types of tapes used, and can decide which one would be best suited for you, let us move on to how you can tape your ankle for soccer.

Optional Steps before Taping - How to Tape Your Ankle for Soccer

  1. Base Spray: You can apply a layer of base spray all over the top of your foot and on the ankles. This will help reduce friction and allow the tape to better stick to the skin. 
  2. Heel Pads: You can apply a heel pad starting from behind the ankle and lace wrap to the front of your foot. The pad helps provide additional cushioning and distributes your body weight evenly. This is an extra precaution to protect your joints and bones.

How to Apply Athletic Tape

  1. Before using athletic tape, you need to pre-wrap the foot. The pre-wrap which is soft and stretchy in nature makes it easy to remove the tape once you are done. Start from the heel and move upward until around 3 inches up of your ankle is wrapped.
  2. Start from the front of the leg and apply two anchor strips of athletic tape. Overlap the tapes by 1 to 2 inches, and apply another strip halfway past the first strip. 
  3. Apply tape on top of the anchor strip, wrapping around the ankle and ending over the heel or the opposite side of the leg. This is the stirrup piece and forms in the shape of the letter ‘U’
  4. Add another stirrup piece in the ‘U’ letter on the center overlapping the previous stirrup. Continue wrapping around the ankle. Secure the second stirrup by applying another anchor. 
  5. The second anchor should be wrapped halfway from the beginning of the previous strip. Continue till you’re at the top of the foot. Use the figure 6 rule.
  6. Next comes the heel. You will need to use the figure eight technique. Start from the inside of the foot, go behind the heel and finish at the top of the ankle. Then for the outside heel, follow the same process. But this time, it will be on the outside of the foot. Continue doing figure 8 for 2 full wraps.
  7. Finish by applying a closing tape the same way you applied the anchor strip just this time it will be at the bottom. Apply tape starting from lower leg’s front, or the heel. You may apply additional anchor tapes on top to secure the tape fully.

How to Apply Kinesio Tape

  1. Start off with the Kinesio on the ankle’s outside around 6 to 4 inches up the ankle. Take the tape and create a stirrup effect by taping over the heel to the other side, around the inner part of the ankle, and end at the same way as the first tape. 
  2. Center a piece placed on the back of your foot with your Achilles or heel tendon. Keep on wrapping the tape around the ankle to your foot. At this point you will still be able to move and bend your foot but with additional support. 
  3. Instead of circling, you can even cross the tape like an ‘X’. Simply, use the underside of your arch as the center and bring the two ends over the front to make an X. Secure the ends behind the leg. This should still give you the same support.

Conclusion

It is always better to be safe than sorry. Even if you have healed from an ankle injury, and think you do not need ankle tape, you are wrong. You should always use ankle tape, even if it is for the support that the tape provides. The task of taping may seem difficult or even time consuming.

But over time, with practice, you will very easily get the hang of it. We tried to bring to you not only the easiest but the most effective way you can tape your ankles. And not just any other tape athletic tape, but Kinesio tape.

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