How to Tape Ankles for Soccer


Soccer is a contact sport that can lead to ankle injuries. In fact, between 20 to 30 percent of all injuries in the game will involve an ankle, according to the Department of Orthopaedic Surgery of the University of California, San Francisco. Stabilizing the ankles of a soccer player can help provide a protective layer to absorb impact from trauma. Ankle wraps also strengthen the area to reduce the incidence of turning the joint and tearing connective tissue. If you have an injury to your ankle related to playing soccer, discuss the tape wrap option with your doctor or athletic trainer.


Press the end section of the prewrap to the back of the calf about midway between the knee and heel. Prewrap is a foam tape that has an adhesive backing.

Circle the prewrap down the leg toward the ankle. Wrap the tape in layers that intersect slightly at the edges to cover all the skin on the leg. There should be no gaps in the tape.

Stop the wrap at the ankle joint and jump down to the mid foot. Circle above and below the heel several turns before moving around the middle of the foot again. Tear the prewrap off and secure the end piece by pressing it with your fingers.

Anchor the ends of the prewrap with athletic tape. Wrap the tape twice around the edge of the prewrap at the midfoot, tear off the tape and repeat the anchor at the midcalf.

Taping the Ankle

Connect the free end of the athletic tape to the anchor around the midcalf. Pull the tape downward and circle under the bottom of the heel, then connect to the same anchor at the other side. Tear off the tape. This is a stir-up wrap.

Pull out a 5-inch strip of tape and center it at the back of the ankle below the boney protrusions on the sides. Press the tape against the back of the ankle and connect the two ends to the anchor around the middle of the foot, one on each side. This is the horseshoe wrap.

Repeat the stir-up and horseshoe wraps, one after the other, three times.

Attach the end of the tape to the underside of the foot in the middle of the arch. Slide the tape up around the inside of the foot and across the top, then circle underneath a second time. This will bring the roll of tape to the underside of the foot facing inward.

Pull the roll back and circle around the back of the heel moving toward the outside of the foot. Slide the tape over the top of the foot and then down on the inside toward the arch. Move the roll under the foot and circle around the back of the heel, moving from the outside of the foot toward the instep and then to the top of the foot again. Tear off the tape and press it down on top of the foot. Repeat this taping one more time.

Wrap one layer of tape around the middle of the foot and tear it off. Repeat this process, applying one layer from the middle of the foot to just in front of the heel. Skip over the heel and begin the single layer wrap from the bottom of the ankle up to the midcalf. With each wrap, move up 3/4 of an inch so the single layers overlap slightly along the edges.

Wrap the other ankle using the same technique.