2 replies [Last post]
Joined: 2011-08-29
Posts: 5

Hi all, maybe a silly question but have seen the runners at the front of the races wearing long socks have heard they are the socks you wear for flying.  Why do they wear them, how does this help??

Joined: 2010-09-16
Posts: 401

Most likely compression socks, to help the blood flow. I don't use them myself, but some swear by them for recovery.

AmphKingWest's picture
Joined: 2011-01-13
Posts: 106

Compression socks.
They are similar to the medical compression wear that is recommended for Deep Vein Thrombosis sufferers.
When used for running or other active sports they provide graduated compression for extra support and enhanced circulation benefits. They help with the return flow of blood from the lower legs and feet. This helps promote the removal of blood lactate from exercising muscles and enables faster repair and recovery of muscles. They can also help some people who suffer with shin splints & calf tightness by helping stabilise muscles in use.
You will often see people using calf guards for these same reasons. Often triathletes use the guards as you are not allowed footwear in the swim phase of racing.
I generally use them after a long session to help with recovery. There is a second grade of compression wear which is specifically tailored for short term recovery use. A lot tighter and more positive return flow of blood.