Surgical tape could be the answer to blister blues

Been splashing the cash on top-of-the-range socks, lubricants and plasters to avoid the curse of the mid-race blister? You could have saved yourself a few quid - and some sore feet - by just using surgical tape.

A study at the 155-mile RacingThePlanet event in 2014 saw 128 ultra-runners have basic paper surgical tape applied to their most blister-prone spots on one foot (or randomly selected locations if they didn't have a history of blisters). A smooth, single layer was applied before the race began, and at subsequent stages throughout the seven day event. By the end, 63% had developed blisters on the untaped foot, while 77% avoided blisters on the taped foot.

"People have been doing studies on blister prevention for 30 or 40 years and never found anything easy that works," says lead author Dr Grant Lipman. "I wanted to look at this critically."

"It's kind of a ridiculously cheap, easy method of blister prevention," adds Lipman. "The best way to make it to the finish line is by taking care of your feet."

Surgical tape can cost as little as £1.49 per five-metre roll.