This time of the year, fitness is many people’s priority but we often overlook our foot and leg health especially when we start a new exercise routine. Without proper shoes, apparel and preparation, a new exercise regimen can cause crapping, discomfort and possibly even injury. That is why Soft Shoe carries a full line of compression socks and orthotic insoles. What are compression socks and what benefits do they have for people of all ages and all activity levels?
Compression stockings help improve blood flow, may help prevent blood clots from forming in deep leg veins, and help relieve symptoms and prevent problems caused by things like varicose veins, skin ulcers, and deep vein thrombosis. Yet for the past several years, marathon runners have seen great benefit in wearing compression socks, which has resulted in the knee-high compression socks to have a more athletic, sporty look. What are some of the performance benefits runners and athletes understand about compression socks?
- Protection: They protect your calves and lower legs from scratches, abrasions, poison ivy, insects or tick bites while on the trail.
- Swelling: They protect your legs from undue swelling, especially for those who spend most of their day on their feet, like waitstaff, service contractors, security guards, bank tellers and any industry that requires standing for long periods of time. Also runners, yoga instructors, trainers and even Olympic athletes are wearing compression socks regularly.
- Warmth: They can provide additional warmth during cold, wintry days.
- Support: Make sure you find the right size so they are not too loose, not too tight but fit comfortably and provide enough compression that they will support your muscles during strenuous activity.
- Prevent Cramps & Discomfort: Compression socks increase oxygen delivery, decrease lactic acid, prevent cramps, and minimize muscle fatigue. Without cramps and fatigue, athletes can push themselves farther and for longer spurts. “One study found that when 21 male runners did two step tests – one with compression socks and one without – they were able to go slightly longer wearing the compressions before exhaustion.” – Running Competitor.com
- Shorter Recovery: Some possible increases in blood flow and lymph removal during the recovery period have also been found – some studies found that wearing the socks after workouts had greater recovery effect than taking an ice bath.
Soft Shoes Brands of Compression Socks
We carry a full line of compression socks in various sizes, styles and colors for men and women. For wearers to get the full benefit, the compression socks need to be graduated, meaning tighter in the ankle and decreasing in compression up the leg, be comfortable but yet apply the right degree of pressure. Our staff at Soft Shoe in Richmond KY has years’ of experience with fitting our customers with the best pair of socks for their activity level, age and usage.
Sockwell: Sockwell is reinventing the therapeutic sock, with a lifestyle look. Their Graduated Compression socks energizes your step, promote circulation, minimize swelling, help reduce fatigue, and speed up recovery – in modern patterns and colors that look great. Whether you exercise, travel, or stand or sit for prolonged periods of time, Sockwell’s Graduated Compression socks are engineered to maximize circulation with our triple zone, anti-fatigue design. Sockwell’s signature fiber blends balance, durability, and thermo-regulation with environmental friendliness. Made with an innovative toe closure for a seamless fit.
Swiftwick: Comfort is performance at Swiftwick. Each line of socks we bring to you has been engineered and developed with you in mind. At Swiftwick, we aim to fuel your adventures with the best socks designed by athletes for athletes. We fuse our personal experience with the most advanced fibers to create socks proven to propel your performance, so you can do what moves you®. When wearing their Managed Compression socks, you’ll instantly notice the second skin fit that stabilizes your feet’s 200 ligaments and 35 muscles. Their seamless Linked Toe and Managed Compression technologies keep your feet blister-free. Their natural odor fighting technology helps your socks stay fresh longer and keep your feet drier.
Feetures!: For 25 years, Feetures! has been the leading manufacturer of athletic socks, endeavoring to create a better performance sock with latest breakthroughs in sock technology. With three levels of cushion levels, they have something for everyone. The Ultra Light socks are super thin and extra breathable, and are designed to keep feet cool under the most intense conditions. The Light Cushion socks are designed with high-density cushioning that provides extra protection in high impact zones. The Max Cushion socks, created for runners, are the perfect blend of performance and comfort.
We also have premium socks for comfort, warmth and style:
FITS® socks incorporate innovative, proprietary engineering and technology to create the most comfortable, best-fitting sock in the world. They are made with superior fibers to ensure the perfect fit and maximum performance and comfort.
SmartWool® is an apparel brand whose products are inspired by living and playing in the rugged Colorado Rocky Mountains. They use nature’s finest Merino wool which manages moisture better than cotton, smarter than synthetics and more comfortable in any weather condition.
Darn Tough socks, created 10 years ago, are so confident in their product, they back up their socks with an unconditional lifetime guarantee. Made from merino wool, with high density knitting, ribbed knit and ankle support, elastic arch support, and Coolmax® technology, they provide performance fit and comfort.
We also have a full line of orthotic insoles, which we’ll discuss in a future article. Stop in the store to check out our New Year sale with 30 to 50% off shoes, apparel and accessories.