How to Tape an Ankle for Basketball

Last Updated on: 28th September 2023, 09:47 pm

Learning how to tape your ankles properly is crucial to protect yourself from becoming another statistic.

We will guide you through the step-by-step process of ankle taping for basketball, helping you prevent sprains and maintain stability on the court.

So, let’s get started and keep you in the game!

how to tape an ankle for basketball

Importance of Ankle Taping

Taping an ankle is an essential step in preventing injuries while playing basketball. Basketball players are especially prone to ankle instability due to the high-impact nature of the sport. The ankle joint is complex, and it’s easy to twist or roll while making quick court movements.

Ankle braces can provide additional support, but taping offers a customizable level of stability. Many NBA players rely on ankle taping to protect their ankles during games. Applying tape around the ankle and foot limits excessive movement and provides added support to the ligaments.

This technique helps reduce the risk of sprains and other ankle-related injuries, allowing players to feel more secure on the basketball court.

Ankle Taping Preparation

To properly prepare for ankle taping, you’ll need the following materials and equipment:

  • An ankle brace: An ankle brace provides support and stability to the ankle joint, reducing the risk of injury during basketball or other physical activities.
  • Pre-wrap: Pre-wrap is a thin foam material that protects the skin from irritation caused by the adhesive in the tape. It also helps to keep the tape in place during movement.
  • Popular among soccer players: Soccer players often use ankle taping to prevent ankle injuries while playing a high-impact sport.
  • NBA players’ choice: Many NBA players choose ankle taping as a preventive measure against ankle sprains and other injuries.

Selecting the Right Ankle Tape

To find the suitable ankle tape, consider the support and flexibility you need to prevent injury while playing basketball. Ankle tape comes in various types, each offering different levels of support. My favorite are these on Amazon – no tape residue!

Rigid tape is the most supportive option, providing maximum stability to prevent ankle sprains.

Elastic tape balances support and flexibility, allowing for a broader range of motion while providing adequate protection.

Cohesive tape is an easy self-adhesive option to apply and remove, making it convenient for athletes who frequently need to tape their ankles.

It’s important to choose a tape that fits comfortably and securely, as a loose or tight tape can affect its effectiveness in preventing injuries.

Step-by-Step Guide to Ankle Taping Technique

Before you begin, gather all the necessary supplies and ensure you have a clean and dry ankle.

Proper ankle taping technique prevents injuries and provides support during intense basketball games. Here is a step-by-step guide to help you tape your ankle effectively:

  1. Apply pre-wrap or underwrap around the ankle to protect the skin.
  2. Start by anchoring the tape at the base of the foot, wrapping it diagonally around the arch.
  3. Pull the tape tight to provide support, but not too tight to restrict circulation.
  4. Continue wrapping the tape around the ankle, crossing over the foot to create an ‘X’ shape.
  5. Move upward, wrapping the tape around the ankle and under the heel in a figure-eight pattern.
  6. Ensure the tape covers the Achilles tendon and the sides of the ankle for added stability.
  7. Finish by securing the tape with a final wrap around the top of the ankle.
  8. Smooth out any wrinkles or creases to ensure a comfortable fit.

Remember to practice proper technique and consult a healthcare professional with concerns.

Ankle Taping Mistakes to Avoid

Please don’t use too much tape or wrap it too tightly around your ankle, which can restrict circulation and cause discomfort during play.

When taping your ankle, finding the right balance between support and flexibility is important.

Another common mistake to avoid isn’t properly preparing the skin before taping. Clean and dry the area thoroughly to ensure the tape adheres properly.

Additionally, avoid taping over open wounds or blisters, which can lead to further irritation and infection.

It’s also crucial to remember to remove the tape properly after each game or practice session. Pulling it off too quickly or forcefully can cause skin irritation and damage.

Maintaining Tape in Basketball Games

As you play basketball games, it’s essential to ensure that you properly maintain the tape on your ankle. Taking care of the tape can help provide stability and support, reducing the risk of injuries during intense gameplay.

Here are some tips to help you maintain your ankle tape during basketball games:

Before the game:

  • Check for any loose ends or areas that need reinforcement.
  • Ensure the tape is applied tightly but not too tight to restrict blood flow.

During the game:

  • Regularly check the tape for any signs of loosening or shifting.
  • If you feel discomfort or notice the tape coming loose, request a timeout to readjust or retape if necessary.

Safe Ankle Tape Removal

After your basketball game, carefully remove the ankle tape to avoid discomfort or skin irritation. Start by gently loosening the tape, using your fingers or scissors to cut it if necessary. Take your time to avoid pulling or tugging at the tape, as this can cause skin irritation or even injury.

Once the tape is loosened, slowly peel it off, moving from one end to the other. If you encounter any resistance or pain, stop and seek assistance from a coach or trainer.

After removing the tape is essential to properly clean and moisturize the area to promote healing and prevent further irritation. Remember, caring for your ankles is necessary for your overall performance and well-being on the basketball court.


In conclusion, ankle taping is a crucial technique for basketball players to prevent injuries and provide support during games.

By following the step-by-step guide and avoiding common mistakes, players can ensure proper taping that will maintain its effectiveness throughout the game.

Additionally, safe removal of the tape is important to avoid any discomfort or irritation.

With the right tape and technique, players can confidently protect their ankles and perform at their best on the basketball court.