It is often difficult to rest the Achilles tendon but this taping technique can help by reducing the load on the tendon during walking.
Football Physiotherapist Neal Reynolds demonstrates a simple but very effective method of taping the Achilles tendon to provide support and reduce the load on the tendon.
The following Achilles taping guide is intended for information purposes only. We recommend seeking professional advice before attempting any self help treatment.
Purpose of the taping
This taping can be used in the treatment of a total rupture of the Achilles tendon when the patient begins to start walking again. The taping reduces the forces on the Achilles tendon by taking some of the load. It will also help prevent the Achilles tendon from over stretching.
Adhesive spray and underwrap can be used to provide a surface to fix the tape to. Applying tape directly to the skin is best so shaving the leg would be preferable but applying tape to hairy skin can caused the hairs and skin to be pulled away when the tape is removed.
Elastic adhesive bandage 5cm wide and 3.5cm non stretch zinc oxide tape are required. This is not an easy taping to apply yourself so a therapist or partner is needed.
- Apply underwrap tape onto sprayed legs or just shave the leg to enable the tape to stick and not take half your leg with it when you pull it off!
- Apply two 'anchors' of 5cm stretch tapes above the bulk of the calf muscle and two around the mid foot.
- Lie face down with the lower leg supported to allow the foot to point down as shown opposite.
- Apply a strip of 5cm stretch tape from the foot anchor to the calf anchor
applying a slight stretch.
- Do not stick the tape to the tendon.
- Now comes the tricky bit. Apply another strip of 5cm stretch tape starting at the outside top of the calf anchor.
- Pass the tape down and across the calf to the inside of the heel.
- Pass the tape under the heel to the outside of the ankle and cross over the calf to attach to the upper, inside anchor.
- Finish off by applying strips of 3.5cm zinc oxide tape over the top and bottom anchors to secure the loose ends.
- Don't tape all the way around the calf with this tape as it does not expand like the stretch tape. Just make sure you cover the ends of the downward strips to secure them.
- A third strip of tape can be used just above the ankle as shown to secure the vertical strips.