How Do You Tape Your Toes for Jiu Jitsu: 101 Guide

Jiu jitsu is a grappling martial art that involves a lot of footwork and pressure on the toes. This means that your toes can easily get injured during training or competition. One way to prevent these injuries is by taping your toes properly.

In the following sections, we will go over the materials you need for toe taping, how to prepare your toes before taping, the proper technique for taping, common mistakes to avoid when taping, and additional tips and tricks for perfecting your toe-taping technique.

Why do people tape their toes in jiu jitsu?

First things first.

Why do people tape their toes in jiu jitsu?

People tape their toes in jiu jitsu to protect them from getting injured during grappling and ground fighting.

During these activities, the toes can easily get caught or twisted, leading to painful injuries. By taping their toes, BJJ practitioners can add an extra layer of protection to their feet and continue training without worrying about getting injured.

The tape also provides additional stability to the toes, preventing them from bending or flexing in ways that could cause injury.

The Importance and Benefits of Taping Your Toes for Jiu Jitsu

Toe taping helps to provide extra support and stability for your toes while training, reducing the risk of injury.

Taping also helps to cushion your toes from the impact of footwork and provides an additional layer of protection in case someone accidentally steps on them.

Another benefit of toe taping is that it helps to prevent blisters from forming on your toes due to friction between them or with the mat surface. Blisters can be annoying, and painful and can even affect your training performance if they burst during a match or drill.

big toe injury bjj
Big toe injury BJJ and mat burn; Google Images caption

Overall, toe taping is a simple yet effective way to protect yourself from injuries and discomfort while practicing jiu jitsu.

Benefits of Toe Taping for Jiu Jitsu
Provides extra support and stability for your toes while training
Reduces the risk of injury
Cushions your toes from the impact of footwork
Provides an additional layer of protection in case someone accidentally steps on your toes
Helps to prevent blisters from forming on your toes due to friction between them or with the mat surface
Simple yet effective way to protect yourself from injuries and discomfort during jiu jitsu practice
Should I tape my toes for BJJ?

Materials Needed for Toe Taping

Are you wondering what materials you need to tape your toes for jiu jitsu?

Well, here’s a list of the essential items you’ll need before getting started:


The most important material needed to tape your toes is the tape itself. You can use athletic or medical tape, but make sure it’s durable and won’t easily come off during training.

It’s also important to select the right type of tape based on your personal preference and skin sensitivity.


You’ll need a pair of scissors to cut the tape for taping your toes. Choose scissors that are sharp enough so that they make clean cuts in the tape without leaving any frayed edges.

sports tape scissors
Sports tape scissors

Antiseptic Wipes:

It is crucial to properly sanitize your feet before taping them up especially if you have an open wound (BJJ mat burn on toes, etc.).

Antiseptic wipes are an essential material needed for this process. These wipes kill germs and bacteria on your feet, reducing the risk of infection.

Antiseptic Wipes
Antiseptic Wipes

Cotton Balls:

Cotton balls are used in combination with antiseptic wipes to help dry out moisture between your toes. This reduces the moisture levels and helps prevent bacterial growth under the taped area.

Now that we have covered all of these essential materials, let’s move on to preparing our toes for taping!

Preparing Your Toes for Taping

Clean and Dry Your Toes Before Taping

Before starting to tape your toes for jiu jitsu, it’s important to make sure they are clean and dry.

You don’t want any dirt or sweat to get trapped under the tape, which could cause irritation or even infection. Start by washing your feet with soap and warm water.

Be sure to pay extra attention to the areas between your toes, where sweat can accumulate.

Once you’ve washed your feet, make sure they are completely dry before taping.

Use a towel to thoroughly dry each toe, making sure you get in between them as well. If your feet are still damp when you start taping, the tape is less likely to stick properly and could come loose during training.

The Importance of Ensuring Your Toes Are Dry

Making sure your toes are fully dry before taping is crucial for two reasons:

  • First, as mentioned above, it helps ensure that the tape will stick properly and stay in place during training.
  • But more importantly, wet or damp skin is more prone to irritation and blistering – something that’s already a risk when training in jiu jitsu.

To avoid any unnecessary pain or discomfort caused by blisters or skin irritation from improperly dried toes, take an extra minute or two after washing them to completely dry off your feet before starting the taping process.

It may seem like a small detail at first, but it can make a big difference in ensuring a successful and comfortable training session.

Taping Technique

The Proper Way to Tape Your Toes for Jiu Jitsu

When it comes to taping your toes for jiu jitsu, there are a few key steps you should follow to ensure you’re doing it correctly.

  • First, gather your materials, which should include athletic tape and scissors if it is too hard to tear off the patch with your hands.
  • Then, make sure your feet are clean and dry before beginning the taping process. To start, cut a long strip of tape and place it over the base of your toes.
  • Ensure that the tape is snug but not too tight – you want to allow for some flexibility in movement.
  • Then, bring each end of the tape upwards towards the top of your foot, crossing them over each other to create an “X” shape.
  • Next, pull each end of the tape down towards the bottom of your foot and cross them again at the base of your toes.
  • Repeat this process until all five toes are taped – you may need more than one strip of tape depending on how long your toes are.

This technique is a basic one.

But in reality, it may not fit in your situation. That’s why athletes are constantly sharing their different methods and taping techniques that passed through “fire and water” in practice.

For instance, the BJJ black belt Kurt Osiander shares his technique for taping the big toe:

How do you tape your toe for support

How to tape toes for BJJ

It’s important to pay attention to how tight or loose you’re making the tape – if it’s too loose, it won’t provide enough support during training; if it’s too tight, it could cut off circulation or cause discomfort.

Make sure you test out different amounts of tension until you find what feels right for your individual needs.

Multiple toe taping for jiu jitsu

BJJ foot tape technique for multiple toes

Illustrations Help Show Exactly How To Tape Your Toes

If you’re struggling with visualizing how to properly tape your toes for jiu jitsu based on text instructions alone, don’t worry – illustrations or even better, videos can be extremely helpful in ensuring that you’re doing everything correctly.

When searching online for guidance on toe taping techniques, look for websites or blogs with detailed images or videos demonstrating step-by-step instructions.

Often times seeing someone else perform a task can be much more helpful than simply reading about it.

Here is another big toe taping method for athletes:

How do you tape a sprained big toe for BJJ

Additionally, teammates in your jiu jitsu gym can guide you through the process of taping your toes and answer specific questions relying on their own experience.

Don’t be afraid to ask for help – proper form and technique is crucial in preventing injuries during training.

Common Mistakes

Using Too Much Tape

Another common mistake is using too much tape, which can constrict the blood flow to your toes and create a less comfortable fit. It’s important to use just enough tape to support each toe without overdoing it. Consider using thinner, more flexible tape if this is an issue for you.

Not Taping Your Toes Properly

Failing to properly tape your toes in the first place can lead to problems later on. Be sure that you’ve thoroughly cleaned and dried each toe before applying the tape, and don’t rush through the process.

Take your time and make sure that each taped toe feels secure and comfortable before moving on to the next one.

Tips for Avoiding These Mistakes

To avoid these common mistakes, there are a few tips you might want to keep in mind:

  • Practice taping your toes at home so that you get comfortable with the process before doing it in class.
  • Make sure that you have all of your materials ready ahead of time so that you don’t have to rush through anything.
  • Ask someone who already knows how to properly wrap their toes for guidance if needed.
  • Use a thin layer of foam padding or other protective material underneath the tape if necessary.
  • Always follow proper hygiene practices when taping or wrapping any part of your body.

Additional Tips and Tricks

Get the Right Tape

One of the most important things when taping your toes for jiu jitsu is to get the right tape. Recommendations on the best BJJ tape for fingers you can find here.

A good quality tape will not only provide effective support for your toes but also last longer. While there are many different types of tape available, some of the best options for toe taping include athletic tape and kinesiology tape.

sports tape for big toe
Sports tape for toes

Apply Some Powder

Another helpful tip when taping your toes is to apply some powder to your feet before starting. This will help keep your feet dry and prevent moisture from building up under the tape. Too much moisture can cause the tape to come off easily, which defeats its purpose.

Body Powder
Body Powder

Use a Base Layer

Using a base layer of pre-wrap or adhesive spray can help keep your toe taping in place during training.

It creates a barrier between your skin and the tape, preventing it from rubbing and causing discomfort or even blisters. Additionally, it allows you to remove the tape without any pain or discomfort.

Pre-wrap athletic tape
Mueller Pre-wrap athletic tape

Different Types of Tape that Can Be Used

Athletic Tape

Athletic tape is one of the most common types used for toe taping in jiu-jitsu. It provides excellent support and stability while allowing you to move freely during training.

Kinesiology Tape

Kinesiology tape is also an excellent option if you are looking for a more flexible option that allows freedom of movement during rolling sessions. It’s particularly useful if you have sensitive skin as it’s designed not to irritate it.

Cohesive Elastic Bandage (aka Vet Wrap)

Cohesive elastic bandages such as vet wrap are another type that can be used for toe taping in jiu jitsu. It provides excellent support while not restricting movement, which is particularly useful when training for long periods.

pre-wrap tape
Mueller Pre-wrap athletic tape


Taping your toes for jiu-jitsu is a simple yet effective way to prevent injuries and protect your feet during training. By using the right materials and following proper techniques, you can provide your toes with the support they need to keep you moving forward in your martial arts journey.

Remember that each person’s foot is different, and what works for someone else may not work for you. Experiment with different types of tape to find the one that suits you best.


Summarize key points discussed in the article

Taping your toes for jiu jitsu can provide numerous benefits such as preventing blisters, reducing friction, and improving grip.

Before starting the taping process, it’s important to gather all the necessary materials and properly clean and dry your toes. Once you’re ready to tape, follow the step-by-step techniques outlined in this article to ensure your toes are properly protected.

Does taping help with jiu jitsu?

While it may feel strange at first, you’ll quickly realize how much more comfortable and effective your training can be with taped toes.

Remember, it’s important to take care of all aspects of your body when participating in sports like Jiu Jitsu. Toe taping is just one way you can protect yourself from injuries and improve overall performance.

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