We describe below a suggested approach for using athletic tape to apply the “X” Arch taping technique. This technique is useful for providing mild to moderate support for the longitudinal arch of the foot as well as the forefoot. Such support may be an important component of recovery from arch strains or plantar fasciitis. It is also useful in treating pes cavus and pes planus conditions.
“X” Arch Taping – Materials Required
For the application of this technique, you will need:
- 1″ and 1.5″ non elastic athletic tape
- Adherent tape spray, e.g. Mueller Sports Medicine’s Tufner Pre Tape Spray
“X” Arch Taping – Suggested Steps
- Position the patient in a seated position on a taping table or bench. His or her leg should extend off the edge of the table or bench and the foot should be at a 90 degree angle to the edge.
- Apply the adherent tape spray to the plantar forefoot area.
- Place a strip of the 1″ tape directly on the skin and over the base of the metatarsal heads. This will serve as an anchor for the remainder of the taping job. If preferred, you may have the anchor encircle the entire foot, but this is not necessary.
- Next, anchor the first “X” strip of tape under the base of the 5th toe. Apply this trip at an angle encircling the medial heel using mild roll tension. End the strip at the base of the great toe.
- Once the first “X” strip has been applied, anchor a second one at the base of the great toe. Then apply this strip around the lateral heel, again using mild roll tension. End at the base of the fifth toe.
- At this point, continue with each “X” strip for an additional 2-3 times. They should overlap on the plantar surface of the foot by between one third to one half of the tape width. They should overlap only minimally as they cross the heel.
- Complete the “X” Arch Taping by applying another anchor strip over the MTP joints. This will cover the ends of the “X” strips applied above.
- As a final step in the process, apply 4-5 strips of 1.5 inch athletic tape to encircle the arch of the foot.