Below we have put together a finger tape guide for Jiu-Jitsu. We have tried our best to cover all aspects of taping your fingers for BJJ.
First off, do what you feel helps you the most and may give you the good support. Technically, there is no right or wrong way in taping your fingers.
People tape up all sorts of things for BJJ, from ankles to toes to fingers. People usually do this to support existing injuries. This post will only be focused on taping your fingers for BJJ.
Why Do People Tape Their Fingers for BJJ?
People tape their fingers to keep them safe and secure, usually if they’re injured in that part. To put simply, if you tape up anything then it’s going to be a little bit stronger and a little bit more secure.
People also tape their fingers to stop their knuckles getting torn up by gripping. If this happens, you may be “death gripping”. Like the below image (taken from a reddit user).
People just allow their fingers to get callused in these spots. You may have seen a BJJ veteran’s fingers like the image below. Fingers like these are usually a warning signs that this person is a bad ass. Using finger tapes could minimize this callusing. Callusing your fingers or cauliflower ears aren’t really a concern for most practitioners but if they are taping over the knuckle is one thing you can do.
Reducing calluses is one reason to tape your fingers but the two main reasons people tape their fingers is to support their fingers and to reduce finger pain when grappling.
Simply, the process is to tape the fingers together (the buddy system) to make them stronger. The buddy system is taping one finger to your next finger. Like the image below.
You can even buy gloves that double up your fingers in this manner.
Potential Issues With Taping Your Fingers All The Time.
There can be issues when you always tape your fingers for support every BJJ session. Taping them every session won’t allow you to build up the strength needed in your fingers.
If you ever forget to tape your fingers, but you usually do tape them, you may end up hurting your fingers due to not used to having the support on them that the tapes give you. Due to this, we suggest using it sparingly.
How To Tape Your Fingers for BJJ
There are couple of ways to tape your fingers up that will help support your joints.
The video below goes over a good basic example of how to tape your fingers from Stasis Jiu Jitsu.
The basic way to tape over your knuckles to reduce losing your skin and callusing your knuckles is pretty simple. As an example, there’s an image below highlighted in red. As you apply the tape just remember to bend your fingers.
The video below is how Keenan Cornelius tapes his fingers in the “Double helix” method. Keenan goes over how to tape your fingers and how your tendons get swollen.
What Finger Tape Should You Buy.
There are lots of brands of finger tapes and ultimately the decision is up to you and what you buy best.
Official BJJ tape is already cut with the right width which makes it quick and easy to apply. Here are some recommendations of tape that are already cut to a perfect width.
Hampton Adams BJJ finger tape < recommended.
Scramble Brand finger tape
Tatami Brand finger tape (Quite good stuff)
jitsy.club Branded tape (7mm)
Prices can vary from $1.50 a roll to $8+
You can also buy thicker rolls and cut a 9mm(ish) groove into them, we have found this to be effective and cost effective.
If you’re looking for some really rad looking tape, we really like jitsy.club tape.
Where To Get The Best Prices On Finger Tape.
On Alibaba you can buy 200+ rolls for a huge discount. Around 14 cents a roll. They’ll even brand it up for you and send them over in custom cases, which is a nice touch if you’re buying finger tape for your gym. In example: below you can get 225 rolls for $32. The downside of ordering them from Alibaba is that delivery can take a while.
Taping up your fingers is a great way to support strained fingers and lets you continue training. There are many ways to tape your fingers but unlike tying your belt , whatever feels right for you, you should go with that. (But, maybe try and avoid being the tape guy at the gym that looks like an Egyptian mummy every class.)
There are many ways how BJJ players do their preparations and you have to find the right way that works for you. It would be much faster to find what works for you by copying someone else methods first.
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PS: Make sure you pick you finger tape up after class.