Route 40 claim that their graduated compression socks are the world’s most advanced!
The socks, with their different levels of compression throughout, are purported to increase circulation, reduced soreness and lead to faster recovery. I must admit that I’m always pretty cynical when I read claims like this, for a couple of reasons. Firstly I’d like to read the scientific study that backs up the claims and see it reported in a recognised Sports Science or Sports Medicine journal. Secondly, if true I’d expect to see all of the world’s top runners wearing them!
Having said that I do wear long socks for running so if I don’t believe that they will improve my performance would I wear them? Two reasons mainly; warmth and protection.
In winter or on cold days I like to try to keep my calves warm and so long socks are my choice. I find that a decent pair of long socks works better, even if wearing shorts, than a pair of ankle socks under a pair of tights. In summer I’d still wear long socks if I knew I was heading into deep heather on my run. On navigation courses we often seek out the more remote and pathless parts of the Peak District and this inevitably means some “heather bashing”! Here long socks are vital to prevent scratches. Another problem with running on the fells in summer is the bracken which not only scratches your legs but also is home for ticks whose bites can cause serious illness.
And then there is the dreaded midge. I remember waiting for the start of a race one warm, still, summer evening and being eaten alive, wishing that I was more covered up. So again long socks are a good idea and you can always roll them down once you are out of the vegetation or away from the midges.
The Route 40 socks are a Polyamide, Elastodiene and Spandex mix and have a nice soft feel to them. Unlike other compression socks that I’ve worn they don’t feel too tight and they are easy to get on and off. They look good (well I think so), I thought they were black at first but as they stretch the blue / teal color shows through. I found them very comfortable, the flat toe seam prevents rubbing and the anatomical shape means that the socks hug your feet so there is less likelihood of your foot sliding around in the sock. I do like them and will wear them throughout the year, I just don’t expect them to lead to improvements in my running!
Comfortable, offer warmth and protection, easy to put on, reasonably priced.
Not sure about the claims of increased performance!
Available from https://route40.co/