Keep Blisters at Bay to Stay in the Fight || Combat Ready Tactical Body Tape Review

Combat Ready Tape
Combat Ready Tape Ruck Kit.

During the predawn hours before the start of the GORUCK Star Course in D.C. a guy (David Fox founder of Combat Ready Tape). Came up to me and gave me a free sample of something called Combat Ready Tape. It looked like KT Tape, and he explained how much better this was than KT Tape. He said that the Special Operations guys were using it. That Combat Ready Tape was used in the best Ranger and Sapper competitions. I stuck the tape in a pocket on my ruck and thought if I had any issues, I would give it a try during the event.

As well, I thought I had prepared my feet (good socks and fiction lube). A few hours later, and who knows how many miles. I started to get a hotspot on the ball of my left foot. Finally, I got to the point where I needed to do something to treat the foot.

I pulled the sample of Combat Ready Tape out of my ruck and stuck the precut patch on the ball of my foot. As a person who has used moleskin for blister treatment over the years. The first thing I noticed was how thin the Combat Ready Tape felt. I didn't use the alcohol prep pad that came in the kit. I stuck it on.

I kept walking and still had some discomfort with that foot. But nothing that I felt I needed to stop, and doing anything else with the foot. I told myself, to keep going and finish. I will worry about it after the event.

It wasn't until the next morning that I realized how big of a blister I had. I saw some fluid on the bathroom floor about the size of a silver dollar. The blister had popped from standing on it. Once I took the Combat Ready Tape off I realized that I had a blister the size of the ball of my foot.

I was doomed from the start of the GORUCK Star Course to get blisters, and I will tell you why a little later in this post. I do believe the Combat Ready Tape helped me deal with the blister. That developed and helped me get to the finish of the event.

Currently, I am getting prepared for my second GORUCK Star Course. To my surprise, in a short 9-mile ruck I developed blisters on the balls of both feet. I had the same shoes and socks that I had used on the last Star Course, but I had used lube on my feet. After this injury took place I decided to buy a Combat Ready tape Kit.

Combat Ready Tape
Combat Ready Tape Back of the Bag shows where to put the pre-cut pieces of tape.

I purchased the Combat Ready Tape "Ruck Kit." The kit looked to have the precut sections of tape for any issues and friction points. That you could have while rucking on the Star Course. I have since conducted three more practice rucks. Since I developed the two blisters on the first long practice ruck. I am happy to report that I have not had an issue with a hotspot or blister since using the Ruck Kit.

So how was I doomed from the start of the D.C. Star Course to get blisters? I didn't fully treat my feet. I knew the ball of my foot was a trouble area for me. If I had gone ahead and put in better prevention efforts on my foot. I might not have gotten the blister, or it would not have been as bad as it was. The other issue was during my training I had not rucked as far as I had that day. The time you do things longer and harder than what your body is used to is going to cause issues too.

Understand how Blisters Develop

Blisters develop from the combination of fiction, heat, and moisture. The correct selection of footwear and socks helps with friction, heat, and moisture. But that alone will not take care of all of those issues. The older we get we might start to develop calluses on our feet in the area of the ball of the foot, the side of the heel, or on the toe. This happens because of poorly fitted footwear. Or how the bones in our foot have developed that will cause the calluses.

Foot Care Preparation is key 

It takes many years to become an expert on a subject. I believe I can call myself a subject matter expert in the world of hotspots and blister care. It's not because I was smart behind what I did to take care of hotspots and blisters it was because I made a lot of mistakes.

Preparation of your feet is the foundation to prevent foot care issues. Such as hotspots and blisters.  It is better to prepare than it is to treat. If you are treating then it's too late. The following are my prevention steps.

  • Properly trim toenails.
  • File down calluses. Calluses are caused by poorly fitted footwear or walking barefoot. Frequent fiction to the area of skin.
  • Use a skin moisturizer to treat dry and callus areas. 
  • Check and treat your skin for athlete's foot or other skin issues.
Prevention tools are:
  •  Toenail clippers
  •  Calluses file or pumice stone
  •  Moisturizer
  •  Athletes foot spray
  •  Combat Ready Tape, and foot lube.

The next step in my prevention efforts is to apply the Combat Ready Tape to known problem areas. I know straight up that the ball of my left foot is going to cause me issues. I will apply tape to that section of my foot. The proper way to put the Combat Ready Tape is to clean the area with the alcohol prep pad that is supplied with the kit. I have found it best to start at the center spot where I want to put the patch. In a circle work out from the center point with the alcohol pad to clean an area larger than the patch. This removes body oils that would be on the skin and provides a clean area to stick the tape. There is no need to stretch the tape, put it on in its relaxed state.

In areas that I normally don't have issues with, I use a lubricant like Body Glide in those areas. Once everything has had a little time to dry, I will put on my socks. I have found that a high-quality Merino wool sock works best for me. I find that merino wool pulls the moisture from my foot no matter the time of year.

Combat Ready Tape
What you get inside the Ruck Kit.

The above picture shows the pre-cut tape that comes with the Ruck Kit. The bigger tape patches are for the areas across the lower back and shoulders. While you might run out of the smaller patches for your toes and feet. I have found the printed grided paper on the back of the larger patches. Makes it easy to draw out and cut smaller patches with a limited waste of patch material.

The Ruck Kit also comes in a 6mil plastic zip-top bag that will hold up being thrown around in your pack or ruck.

The only negative I have had with Combat Ready Tape. That it doesn't seem too sick, as well as moleskin, does once it has gotten wet such as after taking a shower? I am not sure if this is due to the type of adhesive on the back of the patch. Or due to how well I cleaned the area with the alcohol prep pad. While I won't call it a negative, I didn't use any of the larger pre-cut tape sections for what they were cut for. Instead, I used them to cut smaller sections to go on the bill of my foot when I ran out of the pre-cut sections.

I am pleased with how well Combat Ready Tactical Body Tape works for me, and I am likely to buy another kit. 

For military users, you can get your supply channels to order Combat Ready Tape in kits or bulk rolls. For Mil/LE/Fire/SAR you can contact for a discount code.

Combat Ready Tape Ruck Kit for this review I purchased. I received the sample kit like any of the other participants.

Now It's Your Turn-

Leave a comment if you have used Combat Ready Tape. Do you have a tried and true method to keep blisters away?


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