Blistered feet, pain, and suffering are a result of hiking with ill-fitting shoes. Correct shoe fitting is essential for not only comfort but also to avoid blistering.
This article will give you tips on how to properly fit and tape your feet so your hike is enjoyable and pain-free.
Having said prevention is better than cure, here are some effective tips on how to tape your feet for hiking:
1. DO NOT SKIP DIAGNOSIS
Your feet are checked by a podiatrist who can mention specific problems like bunions and increase the risk of blisters from certain shoes.
Get an X-ray done if you have any foot pain or firm sensation on the bottom of your foot.
2. PLANNED SHOE SELECTION
Plan a shoe that fits perfectly and is designed for climbing or hiking. Get shoes with enough room for not just your toes but also for your forefoot and heel as well.
You can buy hiking shoes like narrow, or medium-width depending upon what works for you.
3. COMPRESSION SOCKS
The material from which your socks are made should be super soft, with superior wicking and quick-drying properties.
They need to also have moisture management technology or antimicrobial fibers so as to prevent bacterial growth in the presence of sweat and moisture. The right thickness of socks is also crucial to avoid blisters.
4. TURN OUT THE EDGES OF YOUR SHOES
Edges in your shoes are one of the main causes of blistering on the feet. You can use sandpaper or nail file to turn them out if they are too thick or rough.
Smooth and even the edges so that they do not poke into your skin.
5. DOUBLE-LAYER TAPE
For sportive hikes and climbs, it is always advisable to use double-layer tapes to ensure that your feet are well protected from friction. It also helps reduce chafing in areas where painful blisters can form easily.
Use a stretchy tape like KT Tape for better protection and comfort.
6. CONSISTENT TAPING
Consistency is very important in taping your feet before hiking. It not only provides you with great stability but also stabilizes the joints and muscles of your feet so that they do not suffer too much stress during long walks or hikes.
It also helps to reduce swelling and bruising.
7. MOISTURIZE YOUR FEET
It is always a good idea to moisturize your feet before taping them up for hiking. This helps to keep the skin soft and supple, and also makes it easier for the tape to stick onto the skin.
You can use any lotion or cream that works well for you.
8. CLEAN AND DRY YOUR FEET
Make sure that your feet are clean and dry before you start taping them up. This will help the tape to stick better and also prevent any infection from developing in case the tape comes off during the hike.
9. REMOVE ANY SHARP OBJECTS
Remove any sharp objects from your shoes that might cause the tape to come off. This includes things like nails, small stones, or anything else that might jab into the tape and cause it to peel off.
10. USE A MIRROR
It is always a good idea to use a mirror when you are tapping your feet. This helps you to see what you are doing and also to make sure that the tape is applied evenly.
If you do not have a mirror, you can ask someone else to help you out.
11. TEST YOUR SHOES BEFORE YOU HIKE
Once you have taped your feet, it is always a good idea to test your shoes out before you start the hike.
This helps to make sure that the tape is not going to come off and also that your shoes are comfortable.
12. BRING EXTRA TAPE WITH YOU
It is always a good idea to bring an extra tape with you when you go hiking.
This way, if the tape does come off, you will be able to tape it back up and continue your hike without any problems.
Which Tapes to Use for Blisters?
There are many different types of tape that you can use for blisters. Some of the most popular ones include:
2. Zinc oxide tape
4. Second skin
Which one you use is up to you, but you should experiment with a few different options to see which works best for your feet.
Start with one of the more common and affordable tapes and then move on to something more advanced if necessary.
Preventing Blisters While Hiking
In addition to using the right type of tape, there are some other steps that you can take to prevent blisters while hiking. These include:
1. DRINK PLENTY OF WATER
Make sure that you stay well-hydrated during the hike and drink plenty of water to prevent your feet from getting too hot. This will help reduce the risk of blisters forming under your shoes.
2. CHANGE YOUR SOCKS FREQUENTLY
If you are hiking in hot weather, make sure to change your socks frequently. This will help keep your feet dry and prevent any sweat from building up and causing blisters.
3. WEAR LOOSE-FITTING SHOES
Make sure that your shoes are not too tight. This can cause friction and lead to painful blisters that could slow you down and ruin your hike.
4. PAT DRY YOUR FEET AFTER A SWIM
If you go in for a swim during a hike, make sure to pat dry your feet when you are done. This will prevent sweat from building up and causing blisters under the tape.
Following these tips can go a long way toward helping you prevent blisters while hiking. With the right tape and these simple prevention tips, you can enjoy your hike and stay blister-free no matter how far you have to walk.
Conclusion– How To Tape Your Feet For Hiking
Hiking can be a great way to get some exercise and enjoy the outdoors. However, it is important to take the necessary precautions to prevent blisters from forming on your feet.
By using the right tape and following some simple prevention tips, you can keep your feet healthy and happy during even the longest hikes.
Taping your feet before hiking is a good idea for preventing blisters.