Compression socks are a common sight at many runs these days, and I was keen to find out why so many people swear by them.
They work very like the type of hosiery you might wear if you were at risk of deep vein thrombosis (DVT). DVT is when blood can clot in the veins in your leg due to poor circulation, causing medical complications, and can be fatal.
In the running community however, the knee high socks are worn to support calf muscles and help with blood flow – making for a better run, avoiding injury and helping decrease recovery time.
- Made from 90% recycled polyamide (from fishing nets) and 10% elastic
- Anatomical fit
- Uses Evapor8 fibre to wick away moisture, and regulate temperature
Teko compression socks on test
I am a size nine trainer so I chose the large size. Sadly, the black/green option was sold out, so I had to test the white/green colours – not a good look for a 56 year old man!
Getting the socks on for the first time is quite a struggle – they are made smaller deliberately, so that they compress your lower leg. Once on and properly positioned on your heel and toe, they feel constrictive, but not painful or anything like that. They came to just below my knee, and are graded at UK Level 2 compression, which is a moderate pressure, of around 18-24mmHg (this rating stands for millimetres of Mercury, Hg being the chemical symbol for Mercury). Don’t worry, there’s no Mercury in the sock, it’s just the universal measuring system for pressure…
There are vented areas at the top of the foot area, and cushioned areas in the heel and toe areas. There are even go faster contrasting stripes on the back of the sock, but these are for decoration only. They are foot specific, marked with an ‘R’ and an ‘L’. The pressure on my calfs seemed universal, but on closer inspection of the sock weave, there are graded areas here too.
Once I started running I actually forgot about the socks being knee high (and white), and just got on with my run. In fact, they didn’t really bother me at all. They certainly didn’t feel uncomfortable, and as I was testing them in winter, they kept my legs a wee bit warmer than normal in any case.
I don’t think they made me run any faster, but many compression sock evangelists rave about the recovery time, and the fact they feel better after a run. If you suffer from cramps or stiffness in your calves during or after runs, it might be worth trying compression socks (or sleeves, which cover the calf only), to see whether these are for you.
Teko compression socks, RRP £29.95.
For more information see the Teko website.