Running socks are not a fashion accessory. Choosing the right running socks is just as important for hobby runners as choosing the right shoes. The right socks can not only improve mileage,but also protect the feet.
A poorly fitting pair of socks made from an unsuitable material can lead to problems with toenails, bursitis, blisters, infections and other serious foot problems that can affect not only running training but possibly general health.
It doesn’t matter if you want to jog around the block or travel long distances. The right pair of running socks is the indispensable basis for a comfortable and pain-free running experience.
Functional materials for running socks
Feet are a marvel of nature. About 250,000 sweat glands ensure that feet sweat quickly and heavily. For this reason, lightweight running socks made of technical materials with excellent welding discharge properties are indispensable.
Running socks are specially designed to transport moisture away from the skin. This avoids scouring the socks on the feet, in contrast to cotton running socks, as far as possible. In addition, the feet remain pleasantly dry and warm in cold weather.
Good running socks are made from synthetic materials such as acrylic, CoolMax and polyester. The material from which running socks were made is on the label. For even more comfort and better ventilation, so-called mesh inserts in neuralgic areas provide for different socks.
For particularly sweaty feet, materials with odour-retardant properties are recommended. However, the high-tech materials can only fulfil their function if the running shoes are also able to release the moisture removed from the feet to the ambient air.
The material of running socks
When socks are selected for running, the material is one of the most important factors that must be taken into account. Cotton is now regarded as a fundamentally unsuitable material for running socks.
Why is that? The problem with cotton is the high absorbency. As soon as the feet sweat and or through moisture from the outside, for example when running in the rain or through a puddle, they remain wet and the moisture is not dissipated.
Running in damp socks is the ideal breeding ground for bacteria that cause unpleasant odours. Added to this is the risk of blistering. Last but not least, walking in damp and cold socks is an unpleasant and distracting feeling.
Although cotton is cheaper than modern moisture-carrying functional textiles, the right running clothing on the feet is also worth the extra price.
Running socks at the inclination to bubble formation
If you are prone to bubble formation while running, you can counteract this with a few measures that reduce the friction between the feet and the inside of the shoes. For example, anti-bubble socks are available in retail stores, which have a double layer system that reduces friction.
Alternatively, a second pair of socks can help. When two pairs of thin running socks are worn on top of each other, the sock rubs against each other to protect the feet. In some cases, even thicker running socks can easily reduce blisters or bubble-free feet.
The thickness of the fabric
Running socks with different thicknesses of materials offer different damping levels. Thick socks usually have an extra padding on the heel and toes, which provides better comfort under the feet, more cushioning and protection from blisters. In general, thicker socks are best suited for cooler seasons. On the other hand, the thinner socks are lighter and offer a better running feeling, but can cause excessive friction and blistering when running. In general, thin socks are ideal for the warm seasons.
The choice of a well padded sock or a thin running sock depends on your personal preferences in the end. Socks that have at least a certain degree of padding at all contact points around the foot are the right choice for most runners.
The socks should provide some cushioning in the impact zones. It should be noted that the thickness of the running socks affects the fit of the shoes. As a rule of thumb, about half the size of the shoe is required to accommodate the additional upholstery. This means that new running shoes should always be tried with the most preferred running socks on the feet.
The right size for running socks
When running, socks that fit well are important. A pair that is too large or too small can narrow or fold the foot and toes and not provide the cushioning required. Too tight socks leave imprints especially on the calves or ankles and hinder the circulation of blood. Socks must fit perfectly,especially under the arch and around the heel. They must not slip, but they must not be allowed to narrow. In principle, however, they should be close.
The size of running socks is typically measured and specified in shoe sizes. A look at your own shoe size is the best prerequisite for finding optimally suitable running socks. Since each foot is different, running socks should still be tried if possible.
The lengths of running socks
Running socks are available in four different lengths. The length of the correct length depends on the weather, the training intensity, the running area and the personal preferences.
The four lengths for running socks are: Low / No-Show, Quarter, Crew and Knee High. Many no-show socks have ankle folds that prevent blistering on the back of the heel while running. Higher socks are often a better choice if you want to run in colder conditions.
On paths with dense vegetation, running socks with the length of crew or even knee socks are recommended to avoid scratches of shrubs or insect bites and to prevent dirt from penetrating between feet and socks. Try and try on the length of the sock is also important to find the length that fits best.
Running socks with compression
Compression socks, according to the theory, can improve mileage and accelerate regeneration. These positive properties of compression socks are still much discussed at the moment. There is no scientific evidence yet as to whether and to what extent wearing compression socks can improve performance or accelerate regeneration.
However, many professional and hobby runners now swear by compression socks while running. Some high-tech running socks are designed to easily compress the muscles to improve blood circulation, reduce fatigue and shorten recovery time. In theory, compression socks can or should reduce the risk of injury and prevent muscle soreness and swelling.
To ensure that the fit is correct, the length of the calves is measured with a tape measure at the widest point of the ankle and at the widest point of the calves. These measurements are used to select the optimal compression socks according to the size tables of the manufacturers.
Conclusion so you will find the right running sock for you
People who start running or joggingwill need to experiment with different sock lengths, sizes and fits to find the type of running socks that best suits them in different seasons and weather conditions. Breathable, quick-drying materials such as acrylic, CoolMax and polyester, padding on the toes and heels as well as a foot vault support are not only recommended features for beginners in running socks.