Why Compression Socks Are Not Just for Air Travel
Article by CerysAilsa
Travel Channel’s Deanne Revel recommends wearing compression socks to anyone going on a flight, especially when traveling for a long period of time. She is not alone, as many travel experts and medical professionals recommend the very same thing, too. By now, you probably know why: Compression socks help increase circulation and reduce the risk of swelling or worse, deep vein thrombosis (DVT), and clotting on a long flight. They do this by steadily squeezing your legs, helping your veins and leg muscles to move blood more efficiently and keep blood from stagnating.
But, compression socks are not just for air travel. They can be used for hiking, for instance, as Shannon Furniss did out of sheer curiosity. She got to the top of the mountain and was left “feeling energized, strong and, well, almost invincible.” Compression socks are perfect for sports. This is especially true for running, which can take a toll on your lower extremities. Indeed, it’s not just new technology in sport— like drone technology, wearables, and virtual reality — that are helping boost athletes’ performance. Compression socks, which fall under the umbrella of compression garments, are also doing their part in helping athletes stay healthy and succeed. Although less flashy than virtual reality or other innovations enumerated on the list, compression socks have become an important part of sporting equipment.
Very Well Fit explains that compression garments are designed to improve blood flow. Here are a few other benefits of wearing compression:
A 2016 study published in Journal of Sports Medicine found that wearing compression garments can improve endurance by allowing for incremental enhancements in movement and muscle temperature. While improvement was not overwhelming, slight improvement is all it takes to give an athlete a competitive edge. For instance, as any serious runner would know, any increase in endurance is crucial.
Improves Muscle Function
Improved circulation means oxygenated blood flows more freely, especially to the muscles that need it for sustained top-level performance. The more oxygen in your muscles, the better they will function. Wearing compression can help do just that.
Reduces Muscle Pain and Damage
When lactic acid build up in the body, it causes soreness and decreased muscle performance. Compression improves blood flow, helping flush out lactic acid and preventing further build-up that might cause muscle pain and inflammation. Athletes can use compression to minimize muscle aches and the time it takes to recover.
Because compression helps limit swelling, recovery can begin to reduce inflammation after a hard run as soon as you put compression sock on. This is good news for runners, who know fully well how hard it is to recover from running session.
Prevents Ankle Injuries
Athletes are vulnerable to ankle injuries and wearing compression socks can help keep them at a minimum. Most compression socks provide some form of ankle support, which help stabilize the ankle by increasing your body’s awareness of the joint.
So yes, wear compression socks on your next flight! Compression is incredibly important for healthy air travel. But feel just as free to wear them on your next run, in your next game or on your next hike, too. No matter your age, occupation or location - you reap the benefits of compression legwear anywhere, any place, any time.
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