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Here's a list of compression socks/companies that are out there. Feel free to reply and add on. Thanks!
Here is a new brand - designed by runners:
We've teamed up with a US medical manufacturing company to design an athletic sock without losing any of the medical functionality. We've been wearing compression socks for the last decade and finally decided to create the perfect sock. Check us out - feel free to email with any questions.
Injinji also offers a compression sock for those who like toe-freedom.
I have a pair of these, and they work well. I've only used them on one long-ish run (22 miles), but my legs felt great the entire time. I've mostly used them for recovery, for which they're also very well suited.
2012 Race Schedule
Providence Marathon (4:48:55)
Buffalo Half-Marathon (2:03:16)
Chicago Marathon (October 7)
I'm not sold on compression socks just yet. Are they supposed to be anti-inflammatory or do they promote blood flow in the lower legs? I think I'm doubtful because I'm not sure exactly what they do.
Is there a "best brand" from the list that's generally agreed on to provide the most value and effectiveness?
Compression socks are great if you know what to buy. Look for socks that offer "true graduated compression." This means that the compression should be strongest at the ankle and taper off as it goes up the leg. True graduated compression socks help fight the force of gravity and circulate blood back to the heart. When blood is circulated it helps brings oxygen and nutrients back to muscles that have been deprived during a work out. It can also help flush out lactic acid. I use the SIGVARIS Athletic Recovery Sock (www.AthleticRecoverySock.com) because it is made by a company that has been making medical compression garments for the last 50 years. So, if you know what to buy, you can get a really great benefit from wearing compression. Don't be fooled though by socks that claim to be compression socks, but don't offer any benefit.