Best Athletic Tape

Athletic tape is commonly used by those who are in the process of overcoming injuries typically caused by engagement in sporting activities.

It is placed on problematic areas of the skin to offer support and pain relief to the muscles and joints.

Many athletes would agree that athletic tape is an essential addition to their running kit. For those seeking greater flexibility, athletic tape is a favorable option rather than a cast. 

There are many different types of athletic tape available, some of which are of better quality than others. There are many offerings from different brands too.

The tape that you choose is likely to make a significant difference in the support that you are provided with. We have done the hard work for you and reviewed our top five picks of the best athletic tape available.

If you would like some additional guidance before making your purchase, we have included a handy buyer's guide where we have detailed our top tips for selecting the best product for your needs.

Are you in a hurry? Not to worry as we have given you a rundown on our top picks below.

OUR TOP PICK

KT Tape Original Cotton Elastic Kinesiology Therapeutic Athletic Tape, 20 Precut 10 inch Strips, Black, Latex Free, Breathable, Pro & Olympic Choice (KTT-AW-Black)

As an Amazon best-seller, the KT Original Cotton Therapeutic Athletic Tape offers a total of 20 strips which are pre-cut into 10" pieces.

This is an elasticated tape which is favorable for use by serious athletes and professionals. Once applied to the problem area, it provides support to the muscles and joints where it is required. 

Made from cotton, this is a lightweight tape that is comfortable once applied to your skin. It is also water-resistant so it is going to remain in place following contact with water to ensure that your skin stays dry.

A great thing about this tape is that it comes pre-cut for ease of use. Should you require additional instruction, you are provided with detailed guidance and videos which show you how to secure the tape properly.

Impressively, this tape offers up to 3 days of support for common injuries and can be purchased in a range of colors to suit your preference. 

Pros

  • This tape is trusted and used by professional athletes.
  • It is hypoallergenic and latex-free - ideal for those with skin sensitivities. 
  • It is affordably priced and great value for money. 
  • This tape is resistant to water so it will stay on as you shower etc.
  • It is easy to use and the brand provides detailed videos for ease of application.

Cons

  • The quality of the adhesive could be improved for long-lasting wear.

EDITORS CHOICE

(3 Pack) White Athletic Sports Tape VERY Strong EASY Tear NO Sticky Residue BEST TAPE for Athlete & Medical Trainers. PERFECT on bat, Lacrosse / Hockey stick, Lifters, Climbers & Boxing

Coming in a pack of 3, the Hampton Adams Athletic Sport's Tape ensures that you have plenty available for any injuries you may have.

This tape has been made from 100% cotton for enhanced breathability. It is also latex-free and hypoallergenic, making it a suitable option for those that suffer from skin sensitivities.

A great thing about this tape is the ease of application. You don't need to use any scissors as the amount that you require can simply be torn using your fingers. For this reason, you don't have to battle against tricky tape in the lead up to participation in a physical activity.

As for versatility, this tape certainly does not disappoint. Not only is it suitable for use on your skin for muscle and joint support but it can also be used on bats and hockey sticks etc, as effective sports equipment binding.

Impressively, this tape contours to the area of the skin in which it is applied, eliminating the development of irritation because although this is a rigid tape, it still allows for free movement.

As this tape has been made using medical grade materials, it is going to be tough enough to last for the duration of your workout. 

Pros

  • This tape is covered with a 60 day money-back guarantee.
  • The 100% cotton composition creates breathable tape.
  • Retailing in a three-pack you are going to have plenty available.
  • It is useful for binding sporting equipment too.
  • This is a thick and strong tape that provides effective support.

Cons

  • Once exposed to sweat, this tape begins to lose its adhesiveness.

BEST VALUE

SB SOX Kinesiology Tape (16ft Uncut Roll) – Best Latex Free, Water Resistant Treatment for Muscles & Joints – Let Our Free Illustrative How-to-Use Guide Help You – Ideal for Any Activity (Black)

The SB SOX Kinesiology tape comes in a 16ft uncut roll which allows you to cut the exact amount that you need for the problem area.

Additionally, this tape utilizes compression technology that results in improved blood and oxygen circulation. 

Made using latex-free, premium quality material, this tape is suitable for wear by those who suffer from skin irritations when exposed to harsh materials.

It is also breathable, so you can participate in your workout without having to worry about the build-up of sweat providing any issues.

The use of superior quality adhesive ensures that the tape remains in place eliminating the worry of it tearing in the process. It is also easy to apply which takes the hassle out of the application process. 

As for longevity, this tape is water-resistant so it is going to keep your body dry and remain securely in place even when it comes into contact with water.

It is also resistant to overstretching so even when worn during intense activities it isn't going to compromise on its rigidity and the support that it provides. 

Pros

  • This tape has been recommended by physical therapists, chiropractors, and athletic trainers.
  • It can be purchased in a range of colors to cater to different preferences.
  • Retailing at an affordable price, this tape is great value for money.
  • It can help to improve blood and oxygen circulation.
  • It is lightweight and breathable for enhanced comfort.

Cons

  • Some customers have reported that this has a sticky residue that can make application difficult.

RUNNER UP

Mueller MTape (CS)

The Mueller Athletic Tape has been made from medical grade cotton and can be used to tape physical ailments as well as binding equipment.

Impressively, the contents of this package contain 32 rolls which are sure to cater to all of your taping needs.

Applying this tape is super straightforward. Simply unwind the required amount from the roll and then tear it using your hands. It boasts excellent strength and tackiness that is sure to deliver when it comes to long-lasting wear. 

This tape has been made with zinc oxide that is known to be an effective sunscreen ingredient. This ensures that it is suitable for wear by those who suffer from skin irritations as it eliminates the worry of adverse reactions. 

For those who wish to invest in a more exciting colored tape, you will be pleased to know that it is available in an impressive assortment of colors.

Should you choose to coordinate your tape with your clothing attire, you have the option to do so.

Pros

  • This tape comes in a pack of 32 so you have plenty of rolls available.
  • It has been made in the USA so you can be confident in the source of your purchase.
  • It is easy to rip from the roll making it easy to use and apply.
  • This tape sticks well and strongly for prolonged wear. 
  • It is very versatile and can provide support to a range of problem areas.

Cons

  • The stickiness of the adhesive could be improved for long-lasting effectiveness.

RUNNER UP

Athletic Tape White Extremely Strong: 3 Rolls + 1 Finger Tape. Easy to Apply & No Sticky Residue. Sports Tape for Boxing, Football or Climbing. Enhance Wrist, Ankle & Hand Protection Now (White)

The Summum Fit Athletic Tape is deemed to be strong and sticky with the ability to withstand long training sessions without beginning to fray.

This tape originally comes in a pack of three with a bonus tape provided that can be used to provide support to your fingers specifically.

Thanks to the zig-zag design it is much easier to tear off the exact amount that you require. It can easily be applied to your skin taking a minimal amount to do so.

Just like our previous picks, this tape has been made using medical-grade cotton and it boasts an impressively sticky adhesive backing.

The material also contains zinc oxide and is hypoallergenic so it is going to be gentle against your skin without presenting the risk of potential irritation. 

A common issue with many types of athletic tape is the residue that they leave behind from the adhesive following removal.

A great thing about this tape is that it will leave your skin free of glue or adhesive residue.

Pros

  • You are provided with 3 rolls and an additional role specifically for your fingers.
  • It comes with a money-back guarantee if you are dissatisfied with your purchase.
  • It can be purchased in two color options; white or black.
  • It is soft and feels comfortable against the skin.
  • It is easy to tear from the roll and apply.

Cons

  • It isn't very effective in withstanding sweat and is prone to fraying. 

Best Athletic Tape Buying Guide

We would recommend you consider a range of factors before investing in your athletic tape.

There are many different options available, some of which may lack quality in comparison to offerings from other brands.

Below, we have also identified our tops for selecting the best tape for your requirements.

Application

Your athletic tape should be easy to use, allowing you to apply it to your skin unassisted and with ease. You don't want to be preparing for engagement in an athletic activity only to find that your tape is too tricky to apply.

Likewise, the tape should also be easy to remove when you no longer require its use. Those with stronger adhesive backings are likely to prove a little tougher when it comes to removal.

Preferably your tape should be easy to cut without requiring the use of scissors. You will find some options that can be torn from the roll and others that are a little more firm and potentially more difficult to tear without the use of a tool.

Quality of Adhesive

The quality of the adhesive is going to determine how well it remains stuck to your skin. Of course, you don't want it to be too sticky as this can result in discomfort.

However, it should be strong enough to remain stuck to the problematic area without fraying or becoming loose. Also, consider the regularity in which the tape is going to be worn.

Your tape may be worn for many days at a time and so it is important to ensure that it can withstand this regularity of wear without becoming damaged. The specifications of your product will state its suitability to wear in different situations.

You may find the adhesive of some suitable to wear for several days and others that are less so. 

The Material

Most types of athletic tape are made from cotton as it possesses many favorable qualities that make it suitable for wear by those who are participating in sporting activities.

Cotton tends to be the most sweat-resistant and some will also be elasticated for greater flexibility, allowing you to move freely. The majority of athletic tapes are designed for direct application onto the skin for enhanced durability.

Your tape should be made from hypoallergenic materials and ideally, it should use zinc oxide as this is an effective sunscreen ingredient. Ultimately, this will ensure that the tape is suitable for wear by those who suffer from skin irritations as they don't have to worry about adverse reactions.

The Breathability

Almost all types of athletic tape are porous and breathable. This ensures that regardless of how they are applied they remain supportive but breathable.

Athletic tape that has been made from breathable materials allows sweat and moisture to pass through so that you can wear this tape with comfort. It is necessary to ensure that the tape doesn't compromise on the support that it offers because of its breathable construction.

A tape that is well ventilated ensures that moisture can circulate freely and the build-up of unwanted sweat is avoided. 

The Color

While the color may not be an important factor of consideration for some, others may appreciate athletic tape that can be purchased in an assortment of colors.

While some brands offer their tape in one color, others provide more options that can be purchased in brighter, vibrant colors. This is great for those who wish to run or participate in physical activity in style, with tape that matches the rest of their attire.

The Versatility

A great thing about athletic tape is that it can serve multiple uses.

Not only can it be used to target problem areas on the skin by offering the necessary support that is required, but it can also be used for sports binding.

It is worth paying attention to the reviews surrounding the effectiveness of using this type to target different issues.

The Brand

Many brands are dominant within the niche of athletic sports tape.

Those that are manufactured by well-known brands are likely to be made to excellent quality standards as they have gained a positive reputation that associates them with the production of high-quality products.

There are also athletics tapes that are made by less known brands and are considered to be just as good in terms of quality and effectiveness.

The Cost

On the whole, athletic tape tends to be a pretty affordable purchase. Of course, there are some expensive options, but there are many that prove to be excellent value for money. It is important to ensure that you don't compromise on the quality and effectiveness of the tape for affordability.

Most tapes tend to retail below a $50 price range. Many factors are going to influence the retail cost of your athletic tape. For example, the quantity in which it is sold. Those that are sold in multiple packs are likely to be more expensive.

Also, the amount of tape that you are provided with and the quality of the tape. The brand may also influence the cost.

Frequently Asked Questions

How long can you leave athletic tape on for?

It is often the case that athletic tape can be worn for several days so long as it is taped in a comfortable position that will allow you to move comfortably. 

How tight should the athletic tape be?

As you apply the athletic tape to the problem area you should flex your muscles.

Doing so will ensure that it fits correctly with the right tension. It shouldn't be too tight as this can be restricting, however, if it is too loose it isn't going to offer sufficient support to the area of concern.

How do you get the athletic tape off without it hurting?

The tape can be painful to remove from the skin if it isn't done correctly.

It is recommended that you hold the skin firmly with your hand before attempting to pull it off. You should try to pull it off in the opposite direction as this will help to reduce any discomfort.

Does athletic tape work?

Athletic tape is often used alongside other forms of treatment and can be effective in reducing pain while improving the functionality of your muscles.

It is also considered to be effective in providing supporting and improving circulation.

Rayford Baxter
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