Taping your ankles for basketball requires practice. Doing it properly can be the difference between sustaining and avoiding an injury. If you need to tape your ankles, it is best to have someone help you, but it can be done on your own.
Prepare the Ankles
In preparation for the tape job, shave the ankle region at least 12 hours in advance to avoid painful removal of the wrap. Products known as prewraps, which allow easier removal of tape, are readily available and can be used as an alternative to shaving. Elevate the foot and place it on a comfortable surface, keeping the ankle at a 90-degree angle, with the toes pointing upward.
Creating the Anchor
The first section to complete, the "anchor," is created by wrapping a piece of athletic tape around the lower shin just above the ankle area. This anchor serves as a base point where other ascending pieces of wrap tape will be attached later in the process. Make sure the anchor is not wrapped too tightly so that it does not restrict circulation.
Attaching the Stirrup
The stirrup forms a brace based under the heel. Begin at the anchor by applying a long piece of tape to the side of the leg; run the tape under the heel and back up the other side of the leg to the other side of the anchor. The tape should form a "U" resembling the stirrup of a horse saddle.
Creating a Heel-to-Toe Segment
To brace the ankle from front to back, wrap a piece of tape around the back of the heel and continue it up either side of the foot until it reaches the base of the toes. This piece should run at a 90-degree angle to the tape that forms the stirrup.
Building the Second Wave
The second wave of taping consists mostly of repeating many of the steps already taken. Wrap a piece of tape under the heel slightly in front of the first stirrup and run it up the sides of the leg to the anchor in the same manner as the original. Make sure this piece is as close as possible to the protruding knob of the ankle bone. Repeat the process of the original heel-to-toe--taping directly over the first piece.
Applying the Overwrap
Complete your tape job by creating the overwrap. This requires applying one to three layers of tape around the entire ankle area, starting at the front base of the foot and using a crisscross diagonal pattern until you reach the anchor. Leave the heel exposed for easier movement.