Ankle Taping

A step by step guide to ankle taping





1. Details to keep in mind while taping

This method of taping is meant to prevent lateral ankle sprains, meaning preventing the ankle from going down and in (plantarflexion and inversion). Make sure that the ankle stays in in dorsiflexion while taping, which is near or at a 90 degree angle.

Entire ankle tape job, from start to finish

2.  Prewrap

This step is optional, the ankle can be taped with out pre wrap, in fact the tape holds better when pre wrap is not utilized, however my subject was not willing to shave his ankles and thus prewrap was utilized.  Prewrap also helps in avoiding cuts and blisters. 

Prewrap View 1 

Prewrap View 2

2. Anchors

Two strips below the calve muscle and one on the forefoot, just above the base of the 5th metatarsal. These strips should overlap half of the previous strip.

Anchors View 1

Anchors View 2

3. Stirrups and Horseshoes

Stirrups: From inside of lower leg, starting at achor under the calve, lay down tape down the heel, around heel, and back up outside of lower leg to the calve anchors. 3 or 4 total stirrups are to be laid down, depending on the size of the ankle. Each stirrup should cover half of the previous anchor, the end result covering the entire lateral and medial malleoli.

Horseshoes: Starting at forefoot anchor, the first horseshoe will cover the bottom 3rd of the medial malleolus, go around the achilles tendon, and over the lateral malleolus to the lateral part of the forefoot anchor.

Basketweave: The stirrups and horseshoes should weave, for added strength. So you lay down a stirrup, then a horseshoe, and so on. Remember to always go medial to lateral, pulling up on the outside of the ankle to prevent inversion and plantarflexion.

Stirrups & Horseshoes View 1


Stirrups & Horseshoes View 2

4. Heel Locks

This tape technique consists of two sets (4 total) of heel locks going each direction. Heel locks are laid down, around the heel, across the achilles, and back up on top of the ankle. It is much easier to learn this technique after seeing it, thus open the adjacent video link.

Heel Locks View 1


Heel Locks View 2

5. Close Off

After the above support strips are laid down (stirrups, horseshoes, and heel locks) it is now important to close off the tape job. This is done by laying 2 or 3 strips around the forefoot, and starting at the achilles, closing off one strip at a time until the achors are reached. It is important for the close off strips to cover half of the previous strip.

Close Offs View 1


Close Offs View 2