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Do Cycling Socks Make a Difference?

Do Cycling Socks Make a Difference?

When you’re on your bike there are many factors that will affect your performance, and comfort is definitely one of them.

But, would you think that much of your comfort is down to what you wear on your feet? And we don’t mean your shoes.

Sports apparel technology has advanced dramatically in recent years and is now even making its way into the sock world.  

Specialist cycling socks are very different from your average sock, enhanced with the latest apparel technology to provide the comfort you need for an improved performance. Cycling socks are the new thing that cyclists everywhere are loving, and they really do make a difference.

But, how are cycling socks different from regular socks? 

Fit.

Of course, when choosing any pair of socks they need to fit your feet. But you might not be aware of the importance of a snug-fit for cycling.

Thanks to the tightly woven fibres of their material, cycling socks provide a tighter fit that helps the sock stay in place while you’re riding. As well as keeping your socks on your feet.

A tight fit can also promote blood flow to the feet, helping to reduce swelling that often naturally occurs as a result of exercise.  

But, is a snug-fit going to enhance your performance?

This has become a hotly debated topic in the cycling community, and the answer is maybe.

While there is no proof that wearing tighter fitting socks will improve your performance, there are proven medical benefits of similar products like compression socks in aiding circulation and recovery.

With this in mind, some people say that the power of the placebo should not be underestimated.

So, if you think a tight-fitting sock is going to improve your performance then the chances are it probably will help you push past mental barriers.  

Material.

Over the years cycling socks have slowly transitioned from being made from natural fibres like cotton to now being primarily synthetics like nylon and polyester, these come with a number of benefits. 

During the manufacturing process synthetic materials can be woven much tighter than natural ones, this reduces the amount of dirt that can make its way into the material fibres.

Synthetic materials can also contain antibacterial fibres woven into them which balance bacteria levels on your skin, reducing the chance of irritation. It also stops them from retaining odour! 

Natural materials tend to absorb moisture and expand; in sock form this causes rubbing which we know can only lead to blisters.

Synthetic fabrics used to make socks use moisture wicking technology to draw sweat away from the body meaning your feet will stay dry and minimises your risk of getting a killer blister.  

Last but not least, a typically higher thread count than other socks prevents premature colour fading. Meaning even your oldest pair will still look great, even if they have clocked up the miles! 

Length.

Although you might not think it, the length of your socks does matter. While it depends on personal preference, cyclists tend to favour a longer sock due to the benefit of increased temperature regulation, and good foot and ankle support. 

Longer socks also tend to be popular amongst cyclists as they’re able to show them off more, why not add a bit of style to your outfit?

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