Long socks for runners also known as compression sock have become one of the must-know running terms. There are two kinds of compressional socks, knee-length and sleeves. Running long socks are very strong and elastic. They squeeze the veins on the exterior part of the leg, the arteries and muscles. Graduated compressional socks are tighter at the lower part of the sock and slightly loose at the knee. Compressional attire such as socks, wraps, sleeves, and stockings have been in use for quite a long time especially in the medical field.
Why Runners Wear Long Socks
Running in compressional socks help alleviate symptoms of soreness, cramping or tightness in the lower legs. There are numerous benefits of wearing compressional socks such as increased blood flow, improved recovery, and improved circulation. The following are some of the reasons why runners wear socks that prevent blisters.
1. Injury Recovery Plan
Compression attire has been proven to speed up recovery when worn after a hard race or run. However, the recovery rate of each athlete is different. This is done by improving oxygen flow and circulation. They can be used as an injury recovery plan for people suffering from Achilles tendonitis, calf strains, and shin splints.
2. Improved Blood Flow and Circulation
Compressional socks provide warmth and help to increase blood flow which disperses the lactic acid hence reducing soreness. The graduation on compressional socks is the one responsible for improving the blood flow and circulation. This is because the sock is more compressed at the lower part and lessens upwards hence forcing blood upwards. Compressional gear has also been used in medical facilities to prevent deep vein thrombosis and blood clots.
Studies show that athletes wearing compression socks or sleeves maintained greater leg power after going through and endurance exercise. Runners with specific goals in mind for their upcoming race tend to wear long socks to improve their performance.
The increased compression around the ankles and calves is believed to improve balance and aid proprioception. The belief that compressional socks can increase performance may have an effect on the runner’s perception, therefore, impacting their performance.
4. Additional Reasons
Trail runners wear long socks to protect their legs from, getting scratched, bruised or exposed to poison ivy while running. The socks prevent the runner’s legs from getting dirty as dirt collects on their sleeves. During the cooler seasons, long socks are used for extra warmth. Long socks are considered fashionable since they come in a wide range of different bright colors; they can stylishly match up any running attire.
Before buying long socks, ensure you get the right fit to maximize their benefits. If the socks are too tight they will be uncomfortable and difficult to put one. If they are too loose they will not serve their purpose since they will keep on sliding down. You should go through the manufacturer’s guidelines and use the recommended calf measurement size to get the appropriate fit.
Studies indicate that fifteen to twenty-five mm Hg of pressure is suitable for compressional socks. A lot of compression results in a decrease in blood flow while too little compression does not provide any benefit.
It is important to consider your preferences when purchasing compressional socks.