The Achilles tendon is a large-sized tendon that runs along the rear part of the calf and predisposed to inflammation and damage. Problems with the Achilles tendon are typically caused by hyperextension of the tendon by being flexed excessively frontward at the ankle joint. By applying tape to the Achilles tendon, it will help minimize the extent of motion for protection.
Basic ankle taping
By performing the simple ankle taping, it will provide backing to the ankle joint completely while supplying additional support to the Achilles tendon. With this technique of taping, start by ripping off several bands of tape and applying them over the rear part of the Achilles tendon, spreading outwards from the spot an inch directly above the heel.
Place several long strips of tape parallel to the Achilles tendon on either side, looping beneath the heel for every strip. Take note that these strips will help secure the original strips in place while at the same time provide extra support. Once these are in place, start a continuous strip of tape, beginning above the ankle which covers around the shin several times. Continue down the ankle and cross over and go beneath the foot.
The tape should go back and forth from the ankle to the foot in the figure eight pattern to provide support and then loop around the foot a few times and tear it off to complete the taping.
Taping the Achilles tendon
When applying tape on a leg for support to the Achilles tendon, it is performed by establishing a structure at the rear of the tendon which will limit the slant that the shin can turn forward relative to the affected foot. Start by applying several strips of tape around the calf muscle. The next step is to apply several strips of tape around the center of the foot.
Once these anchors are in place, place a single strip of tape over the Achilles tendon starting at the bottom of the foot and ending on the back part of the calf muscle. Take note that the end of the strip must stick to the tape that is already in place.
Continue by placing few more strips on the back of the Achilles tendon at slightly different angles. Always make sure that these strips are secure or it will not limit the range of motion. Once the supports are in place, place more strips around the calf and foot to secure the long strips along the rear of the tendon. Once completed, there should be a band of strips running along the tendon that will keep the knee from bending too far forward while walking.
Securing the taping and adding pressure to the joint is possible by using an elastic ace bandage. If you want to learn the commonly used taping techniques during first aid, click here.
When using this bandage, you have to wrap the bandage in a continuous loop around the ankle and foot. Secure the bandage in place by using metal clips. These metal clips can oftentimes fall off during activity, thus it is best to cover them using socks. Ace bandages are highly flexible in order to provide good support but ankle braces can also be helpful.