Finding the best compression socks for CrossFit is normal among CrossFitters. However, how do you choose the perfect pair of socks?
In this article, we will cover the top characteristics to look for when buying compression socks. We also offer a review of what we consider some of the best compression socks available.
Best Compression Socks for CrossFit: Buying Guide
First, let us understand the purpose of compression socks. Compression socks are designed two have two main benefits: increased blood flow and decreased muscle vibration.
These two benefits generally lead to improved recovery and decreased soreness. We all know that the demands of CrossFit are tremendous, and therefore any edge we can get on recovery or soreness, will be jumped upon by many.
You can watch this video for a more informative discussion on how compression socks work.
Best Compression Socks for CrossFit: What to Consider
Now that we know the main reasons for using compression socks in CrossFit, let us consider the most important factors to consider when choosing a pair.
1) Compression Level
Undoubtedly, the main purpose of compression socks is to provide compression! However, not all socks are equal in this regard.
In fact, there may be compression socks that cannot provide adequate levels of compression. Thus, it justifies the importance of including the compression level in your checklist.
Also, you may want to check which one is better for you: socks that offer a graduated compression or a constant compression.
CrossFit workouts are intense! We put out our gear through intense amounts of stress. And the last thing you want is for your compression socks to fall apart or deteriorate quickly.
Therefore, it is equally important to consider quality when purchasing a pair. Quality in socks should mean durable material, excellent workmanship, and consistent performance, among others.
3) Wicking Materials
Wicking materials pull sweat and moisture away from the body, consequently, keeping you dry. Given the intensity of WODs and the amount of sweat generated, it is a good bet to choose a pair of compression socks made from wicking fabric.
Another consideration to keep in mind is the style. A viable alternative to the standard compression socks is to get a calf sleeve.
This will generally provide enough compression on your core muscle (the calves) to get a full effect of compression.
Also, using a calf sleeve will allow you to wear your normal socks underneath which is something a lot of people find beneficial.
Review of the Best Compression Socks for CrossFit
Check out our recommended candidates if you are searching for the best compression socks for CrossFit. With the tips we have shared in mind, it will not be that long before you find the perfect pair of socks to go with your CrossFit shoes.
Reebok Men’s CrossFit Print Knee Socks
First off are Reebok CrossFit compression socks. A key feature of Reebok’s CrossFit compression socks is the graduated compression. This means that the compression level is tightest in the lower part of the sock (near the foot) gradually becoming less tight as the sock moves up the leg.
The below diagram demonstrates what graduation compression would look like on a full-length stocking. Graduated compression means that there is the greatest compression at the bottom of the sock. Compression decreases as the sock moves up the leg.
Another great feature (and something unique to Reebok CrossFit compression socks) is that they have a padded front panel. This provides protection when doing deadlifts, rope climbs, or other movements where you can scrape your shins.
Notice the padded section on the shin. This provides additional protection from scraping during deadlifts or rope climbs.
They also have arch and ankle support which provides muscle stabilization during workouts. The best thing about these socks? They are affordable, making them some of the best compression socks for CrossFit.
CelerSport Compression Socks for Men and Women
These CelerSport 3 Pairs Compression Socks for Men and Women are made of lightweight fabric and polyamide, moisture-wicking yarn, and breathable mesh. This feature pulls perspiration away from the skin so your feet can stay dry and cool all day.
Also, they come with friction and shock protection using the seamless toe design. The stockings have targeted cushioning on the footbed for shock absorption.
Noteworthy to mention, the cushion on the toe and in the bottom with thicker yarn reduces the impact and friction during movement. Thus, increased performance and endurance.
You can wash them in warm or cool water and even tumble dry on low/medium heat or hang dry, whichever you are more convenient with.
Zensah Tech+ Compression Socks
With Zensah, you can either go for the full compression socks or a calf compression sleeve. If you dig around the internet, you will find that Zensah is one of the most highly recommended compression socks around, particularly by elite athletes.
Zensah markets their compression socks as Prograde and judging by the reviews, they are. In addition to the superior levels of compression, another core feature is the built-in arch support, which Zensah claims to assist your legs last longer during endurance runs.
Zensah Leg Sleeves
Probably equally or even more popular than Zensah’s compression socks are their leg sleeves. They come in a wide range of colors and are made from wicking and antimicrobial fabric.
Similar to compression socks, the compression sleeves provide superior compression, aiding athletic training and recovery. The main benefit of the sleeves is that you can wear them with normal socks.
Potentially, this means that you do not have to wash them every time you use them, whereas you would need to wash your socks! A downside of the sleeves is that they do not have in-built arch support.
2XU Men’s 24/7 Graduated Compression Socks
As is standard for compression socks, these socks are moisture-wicking and have very good compression levels.
Reviewers tend to be very happy with these, as evident in their feedback and high ratings. The compression is graduated. This means that the compression is tightest around the feet and gradually becomes less tight as the sock moves up your leg.
Some of the key benefits of these socks include padded zones at heels and balls of feet for maximum comfort, a seamlessly linked toe cage, and a vented panel for greater breathability.
Also, they offer faster recovery time and reduce stiffness, soreness, and swelling. In fact, they are suitable for all-day wear. Finally, they are easy to put on and take off and are still intact even after several cycles of washing.
CEP Compression Socks
One of the unique things that CEP has done is rigorous research on the benefits of their compression socks, including a reduction in shin splints, calf cramps, Achilles issues, and pulled muscles.
In fact, studies have indicated a significant increase in lower leg blood circulation when wearing CEP compression socks.
One of the big differentiating factors is that CEP does not have graduated compression, but rather has compression all over the foot and lower leg. Some feel that it does not fit them anatomically as well as socks with graduated compression.
Best Compression Socks for CrossFit: Men vs Women
Finally, let us consider what men and women might look for in compression socks. The anatomy of a man’s leg is pretty much the same as a woman, so the sock structure itself is going to be the same. What differs is the design.
There are also some great patterns out there from some lesser known brands, such as Red Lion. Check out the Red Lion Solid Compression Leg Sleeves below:
Best Compression Socks for CrossFit: Final Thoughts
We have shown you the key characteristics to look for in compression socks for CrossFit. We hope you have also found our reviews of the best compression socks for CrossFit helpful.
Undoubtedly, what works best for some may produce different experiences for others. Ultimately, your comfort and protection are the most important considerations when choosing a pair of compression socks.