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Reusable Heat & Ice Wraps | Ice Packs Designed by Physical Therapy Professionals Since 1997

How To Wrap An Ankle

Posted on July 27 2017

Wrapping an ankle with a bandage is a fairly common and popular way to tackle pain that may arise due to sprains, achilles tendonitis, heel pain, gout, arthritis and other conditions.

Unfortunately, ankle sprains are a very common injury.  They occur when the ankle or foot is bent at an unnatural angle, resulting in tearing of the outer ligaments. If left untreated, sprains do not heal quickly and can cause chronic pain or permanent weakness in the ankle or foot. Learning how to properly wrap an ankle is essential to your recovery.

Wrapping an ankle with a compression wrap does not fully prevent movement. However, they do restrict movement and this can expedite the healing process as too much movement can cause the ligaments to tear further and exacerbate the injury.

Wrapping an ankle does not guarantee complete support. Even if you learn how to wrap your ankle, it still has to bear the weight of the entire body. Still, wrapping an ankle lends some sort of stability to the joint and can prevent excessive swelling, especially when used in conjunction with an ice pack. Most importantly, wrapping an ankle keeps reminding you about your injury and hence, you remain cautious and prevent jerky movements.

Athletes, runners, weight lifters and sports enthusiasts engage in grueling workouts that exert tremendous pressure on the feet. Learning how to wrap your ankle and use ice packs can numb the pain and aid in faster recovery.

Very few people know how to wrap an ankle properly. Even fewer are aware that they don’t know how to do it – ignorance combined with arrogance leads to poor ankle wrapping technique, which can cause a lot of pain and discomfort. If you position the foot incorrectly while wrapping, it will remain in an abnormal position for extended periods of time. Not only does wrapping an ankle improperly prevent recuperation, but it can also lead to unnecessary complications.

Here are the basics of how to wrap your ankle with an elastic bandage:

Step 1: Make sure that the bandage is tightly rolled up.

Step 2: Dorsiflex the ankle at a right angle (90 degrees)

Step 3: You should always start at the point where your toes meet the body of your foot (dorsal aspect of foot) . Do not start wrapping from the top towards the bottom.

Step 4: Wrap all around your foot, holding the loose end firmly in place with your other hand. Go over the loose end a couple of times to ensure that it stays in place. Lightly pull the bandage so that it is taut but do not pull so tightly that it will cause an arch like bend in the foot!

Step 5: Move backwards and upwards in a circular motion. When you reach the ankle, begin wrapping around the bottom of the shin. Then form a figure of 8 – circulating around the lower shin and the foot.

Step 6: Secure the ankle with the bandage while maintaining a ninety degree angle. You’ll notice that as you wrap in the figure of 8, the heel gets neglected. This is intentional. Since the heel is round and curved, the bandage is bound to slip off from it and hence it is not wrapped.

Step 7: Fasten the last bit at a thick part of the bandage with the pin that comes along with it. Do not place the pin on the underside of the foot as it might prick the sole while standing or walking.

Step 8: Try not to walk around too much with the bandage. It will become loose and eventually come off. It is best to keep your foot in an elevated position. This prevents swelling as gravity pulls the blood down towards the body.

Here is a video showing how to wrap your ankle properly:


A Better Ankle Wrap Alternative?

The method mentioned above is an effective way to wrap an ankle, but it's only a temporary fix, and it has several limitations.

To begin with, wrapping a bandage around your ankle takes up quite a bit of time. You may have to make several attempts if you’re not used to wrapping regularly. While a professional Physical Therapist or Doctor can wrap your ankle for you fairly quickly, It is not unusual for each self-attempt to take up to ten minutes or even more!

If not wrapped properly, the bandage can come off. So now you have to unwrap it and roll it up before you’re ready to wrap it once again. This repetitive ankle wrapping process could mean that you stop trying to learn how to wrap your ankle properly and try walking on it too early.

With a typical bandage, you cannot combine heat or cold to provide comfortable relief for you injury. As well, the bandage may not be long enough to hold the ice pack to your injury while providing stable support.

If you give it some thought, you’ll soon realize that a conventional bandage wrap is inefficient and ineffective. So what works then?

Well, a purpose built ActiveWrap Ankle & Foot Pack serves the purpose perfectly. It’s easy to use (even on your own) and provides complete coverage.

It has a patented design that features built in ice or heat packs that you can move over to the exact position that you desire. It is available in several sizes such as small, medium, large and extra large. It’s been helping people to get rid of ankle and foot pain for over two decades.

The ActiveWrap for foot/ankle is durable and convenient. It is the only wrap in the world that can be configured precisely how you want. It is comfortable to wear and is manufactured using high quality medical grade fabric. It is great not just for alleviating pain, but also for prevention of injuries.

While it takes several minutes to roll a bandage around your ankle and foot, an ActiveWrap can be worn in just a few seconds. It is light years ahead of elastic bandages and other mediocre proprietary wraps. Learning how to properly wrap your ankle can take a lot of time and effort; ActiveWrap brings you ankle pain relief in seconds!

There is an ActiveWrap for almost any type of muscle or bone related injury, including but not limited to; ankles, shoulders, knees, wrists, and more. Each product pages features authentic reviews written by real people and get ready to say goodbye to pain forever.  Try ActiveWrap today, we can’t wait to read your review!