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4,794 bytes added, 16:13, 6 October 2013
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* You can tape a blister with or without popping it. Popping a blister is a bad idea, but sometimes it's necessary if the blister will spread.
* Taping should be a last resort; try to fix the underlying problem first.
=How taping helps=
Taping can help in several different ways:
# Taping can act as another layer, so that your socks move against the tape, not against your skin. This can reduce the friction on your skin, but the sheering forces remain. A tape with a smooth texture is best for this.
# Taping can spread the sheering forces, so that instead of being concentrated in one spot, like the ball of your foot, it is spread over a wider area. You need an inflexible tape for this, and sometimes a little tension when applying the tape.
# A variation of #2 above is to use the tape to stabilize a punctured or open blister. Even slight movement of the detached skin over the underlying flesh can be painful, and a layer of tape and help prevent this.
# It is possible to change the shape of your foot slightly by applying the tape with some tension. I normally only do this when taping blistered toes. This requires an inflexible tape and just the right amount of tension; too much will cause more problems.
# Tape can be used to prevent dirt entering a punctured or open blister, which may limit infection. Use a little antiseptic ointment on the opening and cover with tape.
# While taping can provide some padding, the tape is normally too thin to have much benefit. Building up multiple layers does not provide much more padding, and can increase pressure locally.
I've used various tapes on myself and other runners, as well as conducting some specific comparison tests. I've applied multiple tapes on dry skin, wet skin and wet skin with adhesive promoter and left them in place until they fall off to see how they hold up. The wet skin tests had semi-macerated skin, where I'd kept the skin wet for several hours to mimic race conditions. * '''Leukotape P'''. This is the only tape I've found that sticks to skin that is already wet without an adhesive promoter. If you only have one tape, this should probably be it. [ B000H94TAQ Leukotape P at Zombie].
* '''Hypafix'''. I have not used Hypafix extensively, but I've been impressed with its characteristics. It's inflexible, thin, soft and the edges don't fray too badly. [ Hypafix at Zombie Runner].
* '''Kinesio-Tex'''. This is a soft tape that stretches in one direction. I find that it does not stick well without an adhesive promoter, though rubbing the tape to warm it before applying will help it stick a little better. I also find the edges tend to fray, so I will often use some Micropore to stick the edges down. I find this is a good tape for between toes, where its softness is important.
* '''Micropore'''. This was my default tape before I discovered [ Leukotape P], partly because I have been using Micropore from my earliest memories due to my skin condition. Micropore is very thin, smooth and inflexible, but not very sticky, so you should use it with an adhesive promoter. It will stick to dry skin and adhere well if given time, but that is only viable for pre-taping. It's thinness means it doesn't add much bulk nor does it fray, but it can peel up at the edges sometimes. [ Micropore at Zombie Runner]
* '''Elastikon'''. This tape is thicker than any of the others, slightly rough, but flexible and porous. I rarely use it, but it's worth considering if you need a flexible tape. [ Elastikon at Zombie Runner].
* '''Duct Tape.''' I strongly recommend against using duct tape, as it is not breathable, so the skin tends to become saturated underneath. Duct Tape also tends to wrinkle, creating creases that cause further problems. Like many other tapes, you need to use it with an adhesive promoter to get it to stick effectively. Watch the edges, as they tend to catch and then the tape then rolls up. I have used Micropore on the edges, with some success. If you really want to use Duct Tape, look for the Gorilla Tape brand, as the adhesive is better than most.
=Blister Supplies=
This The images below are from my supplies for taping and blister fixing. If you need to assemble a smaller kit, here are my recommendations for the bare minimum, in order of importance:* '''Leukotape P'''. If I could only have one type of tape, it would be this one. * '''Scissors'''. If you're just cutting the tape, most scissors will work fine. If you are using them to pop a blister then they need to be small and sharp. * '''Alcohol Swabs'''. Cleaning the area before taping is important, and if you have to pop a list blister, then it's vital. You can use some kitchen roll (or gauze) and rubbing alcohol instead. * '''Adhesive promoter.''' You can get away without this, but it can make a big difference to how well the tape sticks. If you do use adhesive promoter, then you need a small makeup brush to apply it and some powder so it does not stick to the socks. Any type of powder will work, including talcum or baby powder. Tincture of supplies Benzoin (friar's balsom) is the cheapest option.* '''Hypodermic needles'''. I find these needles are so much better for treating blisterspopping a blister than scissors, but they are harder to get hold of. You will probably have to mail order them; as pharmacists don't like to sell hypodermics to people that don't have a prescription to justify their use. I get mine from [ Allegro Medical].
<gallery widths=300px heights=200px caption="Blister Treatment Supplies">
File:IMG 0097.JPG|Leukotape P, showing the slightly course texture
File:IMG 0186.JPG|Another close up, with a coin to give scale.
File:IMG 0103.JPG|If you’re working on other runner’s feet during a race, you need to keep track of time.
File:IMG 0192.JPG|If you're fixing runner's feet at a race, then somewhere comfortable for them and you is important. This 'zero gravity' reclining chair allows them to relax without [[Stretching|stretching]] their hamstrings or stressing their hip flexors. It raises their feet enough to let you work on them, though the stool that's shown is useful as you still need to be quite low. Notice the foam sleep mat, which will help keep the runner from getting too cold.
File:Petzl MYO XP Full.jpg|A good [[Running Lights|light]] can be vital in poor lighting conditions.
* If time is limited, a simple strip of Kinesio-Tex tape could be used.
* Dust in powder so the excess adhesive does not stick to the socks.
<gallery widths=300px heights=200px caption="Taping blister between the toes">
File:IMG 0114.JPG|Cut a rectangle of Kinesio-Tex tape.
File:IMG 0120.JPG|Apply Micropore (or Leukotape) to the edges.
File:IMG 0122.JPG|This is how it should look at the end.
This approach is slightly quicker, but the narrow strip won't stay in place as well as the butterfly.
<gallery widths=300px heights=200px caption="Taping blister between the toes (quicker)">
File:Image To Follow.JPG|Apply the adhesive promoter above and below the blistered area where the strip will adhere to good skin.
File:BetweenStrip.JPG|Cut a narrow rectangle of Kinesio-Tex tape.
File:BetweenFirstTape.JPG|Apply the narrow strip to the foot above the blister and then thread between the toes, peeling the backing as you go. You’ll need some help holding the toes apart.
File:BetweenExtraAP.JPG|Apply more adhesive promoter on the edge of the Kinesio-Tex tape and the surrounding skin.
File:IMG 0126.JPG|Apply Micropore (or Leukotape) to the edges.
* Apply the adhesive promoter to the undamaged skin either side of the blister.
* Apply tape over the ball of the foot and up either side, but don't circle the foot entirely as this could constrict blood supply.
<gallery widths=300px heights=200px caption="Taping a blistered ball of the foot">
File:BallAP.JPG|Apply the adhesive promoter around the blistered area where the tape will adhere to good skin.
File:BallStartTape.JPG|Apply the tape around the forefoot, going up the sides.
File:BallFolded.JPG|Pinch the excess tape into a small number of folds.
File:BallTrim.JPG|Cut the folds off with small scissors. You need to cut nearly all of the fold off, but not too much as a little bit of overlap is useful for keeping the tape together.
File:BallFinished.JPG|The finished version.
==Under the heel==
This is similar to the ball of the foot, with the tape applied up either side of the heel. [[Blister Prevention# Blisters under the heel of the foot|Prevention tips]]

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