How Do You Tape Your Toes for MMA? The Ultimate Guide

Whether you’re a seasoned MMA warrior or just stepping into the ring for the first time, one thing’s for sure to know – how do you tape your toes for MMA? Protecting your feet is crucial. And when it comes to safeguarding those proper taping techniques can make all the difference in the world.

In this ultimate guide, we’re going to dive into the toe taping for MMA fighters. So, get ready to tape like a champ and keep those precious phalanges fighting fit.

The Importance of Taping Toes in MMA

First things first.

Why do fighters tape their toes?

When it comes to mixed martial arts, the feet and toes are some of the most important parts of the body. They are used for balance, movement, kicks, and grappling.

However, they are also one of the most vulnerable parts that can easily be injured during a fight. That’s why it’s crucial to tape your toes properly before every MMA fight or training session.

The Potential Risks of Not Taping Toes

When it came to injuries – simple or severe – not taping your toes can lead to a range of painful injuries that can seriously hamper your performance in a fight or even put you out of action for weeks or months on end.

Some common injuries include broken toes, sprains, mat burns, turf toe, and dislocations. These types of injuries can be incredibly painful and can take a long time to heal properly.

big toe injury mma
Toe and big toe injury MMA; Google Images caption

Furthermore, fighting with bare feet also increases the chances of contracting skin infections such as ringworm or staph infections which can spread quickly and are difficult to treat.

Taping your toes is not only important for preventing MMA toe injury but also plays an essential role in minimizing infection risks inside the cage.

Materials Needed


The first material you will need is a tape, obviously.

MMA fighters typically use athletic tape, which is strong and durable enough to withstand the rigors of a fight. The most popular types of athletic tape are cloth tape and Kinesio tape.

sports tape for big toe
Sports tape for big toe, toes, and ankle

Cloth tape is thicker and more rigid than Kinesio, so it provides more support for your toes. Kinesio tape, on the other hand, is thinner and stretchier, making it more comfortable to wear for extended periods of time.

Liquid bandage

Liquid bandage adds an extra layer of support by helping to protect your skin better.

Liquid bandage for mat burn
Liquid bandage for mat burn

Liquid bandage is a versatile and convenient alternative to traditional adhesive bandages.

It offers several features that make it a go-to solution for minor cuts, scrapes, and wounds such as MMA mat burn on toes, etc. Firstly, it forms a protective, transparent barrier over the injured area, shielding it from dirt, bacteria, and water while allowing the skin to breathe and heal naturally. This helps reduce the risk of infection and promotes faster healing.

Secondly, the liquid bandage is waterproof, making it ideal for martial arts activities. It also flexes with the body’s movements, providing comfortable and long-lasting protection.


Another crucial item you’ll need to have on hand is scissors. You’ll use them to cut the pieces of tape that you’ll be using to wrap your toes.

Cotton Balls or Gauze Pads

Cotton balls or gauze pads can help prevent blisters or other injuries by adding an extra layer of padding between your toes.

Pre-Wrap (Optional)

Pre-wrap isn’t always necessary, but some fighters find it helpful in preventing irritation from the adhesive on the athletic tape. It’s essentially a thin foam-like material that goes on before taping.

Pre-wrap athletic tape
Mueller Pre-wrap athletic tape

Each material listed above plays an important role in ensuring proper toe taping during MMA fights or training sessions.

Even though some materials may seem optional, they can make all the difference in ensuring that your toes remain protected throughout intense physical activity associated with MMA fighting.


Scrub-a-dub-dub your toes

Before you even think about taping your toes for MMA, it’s critical that you give them a proper cleaning. Not only will this prevent dirt and grime from getting under the tape, but it’ll also help prevent infections.

Use warm water and soap to thoroughly clean your feet, being sure to scrub in between each toe.

Be gentle though – you don’t want to cause any unnecessary abrasions.

Get those toes dry

Once your feet are clean, it’s important to make sure they’re completely dry before starting the taping process. Water or sweat can cause the tape to loosen, which is obviously not ideal during a fight. Use a towel or air-dry your feet until they’re completely dry.

Tape positioning is key

Properly positioning your toes is just as important as using the right materials when taping them up for MMA.

First off, make sure that each toe is spread out wide so that there isn’t any overlap between them. This ensures that each toe gets adequate support from the tape without hindering movement or causing discomfort.

Secondly, ensure that every piece of tape covers at least one-third of both sides of each toe – this will keep them secure and reduce the risk of injury during combat.

By taking these simple steps before your next fight or sparring session, you’ll significantly reduce the chances of injuring those precious digits!

Toe Taping Techniques:

Wrap It Up

Are you ready to get your toes taping?

Here’s a step-by-step guide on how you can tape your toes for MMA.

First, take a roll of 1-inch athletic tape and hold the end between your thumb and index finger. Place the middle of the tape at the base of your big toe and start wrapping it around your toe in a spiral motion.

Make sure to wrap it tightly but not too tight as this may cause discomfort. Continue to wrap until you reach the top of your toe, making sure that there is no space between each layer of tape.

The Cross Over

Next, take another strip of 1-inch athletic tape and hold it with both hands. Place one end at the base of your pinky toe and wrap it over the top of all four toes as if creating an “X” with the tape.

Make sure that there is no gap between each layer as this can cause friction during training or competition.

Secure It In Place

After making an “X” with your second strip, continue wrapping it around each individual toe until you reach the starting point again. Secure this by tucking in both ends underneath previous layers or using scissors to cut off excess tape.

Repeat The Process

Repeat these steps for each foot before putting on any footgear or socks. This process may seem overwhelming at first, but with enough practice, you can become an expert in no time.

Guideness in words is good, but it is always better one time to see to have a better understanding of what to do.

How do you tape a broken toe for MMA?

How Do You Tape Your Toes for MMA

Remember, it’s always better to take precautionary measures rather than risk injury during training or competition.

Another common situation in MMA is dealing with mat burn wounds.

How do you tape your toes for mat burn

Common mistakes to avoid

Common mistakes made when taping toes

Even though toe taping is a simple and easy process, many people tend to make common mistakes that can cause discomfort and even lead to injuries.

  • One of the most common mistakes is using too much tape, which can restrict movement and blood flow, causing cramping or numbness during the fight.
  • Another mistake is using the wrong type of tape, such as duct tape or masking tape, which does not provide enough support or flexibility for your toes.

Tips on how to avoid these mistakes

To avoid these common mistakes when taping your toes for MMA, make sure you use sports-specific tape like athletic tape that has been tested and approved for use in combat sports.

Also, be mindful of the amount of tape you use; it should provide enough support without feeling too tight or uncomfortable.

Before taping your toes, ensure that they are clean and dry so that the tape adheres properly. Additionally, be sure not to overlap your fingers while taping your toes as this can restrict movement and cause discomfort.

It’s essential to retape if you notice any signs of wear or looseness during a fight.

By avoiding these common toe-taping mistakes and following proper techniques consistently, you’ll significantly reduce the risk of injury while enhancing your performance in MMA fights!

Additional Tips and Tricks

Get Creative with Your Tape

When it comes to taping your toes for MMA, don’t be afraid to get creative with your tape.

You can experiment with different taping patterns and techniques to find what works best for you.

Some fighters prefer using pre-cut toe wraps, while others prefer wrapping each toe individually.

Additionally, you can try using different types of tape or adding extra layers for added MMA toe protection.

Keep Extra Tape on the Hand

It’s always a good idea to keep extra tape on hand in case you need to re-tape during a fight.

It’s not uncommon for tape to come loose or wear down over time, so having spare tape available can help ensure that your toes stay protected throughout the entire fight.

How Often Should You Retape Your Toes During a Fight?

The answer to this question will depend on several factors, including how long your fight lasts and how much movement your feet are exposed to.

As a general rule of thumb, it’s best practice to retape your toes after each round of fighting or whenever you feel that the tape has become loose or worn down.

During longer fights or fights with higher levels of movement (such as grappling), you may need to retape more frequently in order to maintain optimal protection.

In addition, if you sustain an injury or notice any discomfort during a fight, it’s important to stop and assess whether you should retape or seek medical attention.

Ultimately, the safety and protection of your feet should always be a top priority when participating in MMA.


After reading this article, you should now have an understanding of how to tape your toes for MMA.

We’ve gone over the materials you’ll need, how to prepare your feet for taping, the taping technique itself, and some common mistakes to avoid.

Remember that taping your toes is crucial in preventing injuries during a fight or training session. It’s important to take proper precautions when preparing for any physical activity that puts a strain on your body.

By properly taping your toes before an MMA fight, you can significantly reduce the risk of toe injuries and focus solely on bringing your best performance to the ring.

Take care of your toes and give yourself a step up in protecting them from injury during an MMA fight.

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