Roller skates and wearing socks is a relatively small topic. Yet, all skaters have their own opinion about what kind of socks to wear while roller skating. They may not reach an agreement on what type of socks to wear, but the majority of them agree that wearing socks is a good idea to prevent blisters and other foot conditions.
Long socks reach high on your leg and they prevent blisters by preventing the friction between the skates lining and your skin. This is why most roller skaters wear long socks as it is best for preventing blisters and skin irritations.
Now that you know why roller skaters prefer wearing socks while skating, I will also talk more about how it works to protect your feet and what you should choose based on the type of your roller skates and skating habits.
Benefits of Wearing Socks
Socks come in lots of heights and thicknesses. There are very short socks, medium socks, high socks. Any of them is fine, as long as it reaches above the lining of your roller skate because that is the area where you need to protect most.
High socks or Long socks are the best among the bunch because you don’t have to worry about the lining height with these. And they cover the most area of your leg, adding an extra protective layer to prevent any blisters.
Long socks that reach up to your kneecaps are optimal because they not only prevent blisters on your ankle skin but also give your shins some extra padding.
Having that extra bit of padding from the high socks to reinforce your shin muscles which goes a long way to help keep your legs in their top shape.
Socks also help to ease the existing blisters on your legs. If you’ve ever skated with a rental pair of roller skates or with one that was not custom made for your feet, you most likely developed painful blisters and skin irritations around your ankles. Particularly on the places where the skates lining touches your skin. Socks are there to prevent this friction from occurring.
If your skate is of the wrong size, then it probably fits a little loose in some parts. You could wear multiple layers of socks to make it fit more snugly. Also, Socks absorb most of the sweat. It makes your roller skate stink less.
Problems of Not Wearing Socks
Not wearing socks is very unhygienic because all the sweat your feet release stays inside the shoe. Along with a bunch of fungi attacks, this also makes your skate stink more. If you have fully custom-made skates tailored to fit every nook and cranny of your foot, you could probably skate without socks. That is something a lot of top skaters do.
But custom skates are expensive, and most people rely on over the counter brands. But these shoes were not made for one’s specific foot size. That’s why they cause blisters and skin irritations if you wear them without the protective layer of socks. With regular skate shoes, you are probably sacrificing a lot of stability and grip by not wearing socks as well.
There are a few issues that can arise from skating, and a lot of them are avoidable to a certain degree by wearing the right socks.
- Lace bites: This usually happens when you use a new skate for too long. The lace bolts dig into your skin, causing bruises. If you do not take care of them, they could develop into full-blown infections. Wearing socks helps prevent lace bites by adding a protective layer between your skin and the lace holes.
- Blisters: Blisters are the most common problem of not wearing socks while skating. When you are skating, your feet make many twists and turns. It causes the roller skates neck-lining to rub against your ankle, making it raw and causing blisters.
It is especially noticeable on skates with a higher neck. The upper lining is designed not to move around with the upper part of your ankle. It causes a substantial amount of friction and often leads to blisters. Wearing socks is a surefire way to prevent this from happening.
- Heel bruising: Heel bruising is not technically related to socks itself. Heel bruises occur when you do repeated heel movements, for example, practicing the same trick over and over again. Repeated movements make your tendons sore and cause inflammation.
Wearing hard skates with no padding can cause this to happen faster than usual. Thick socks act as a layer of protection. They also provide better grip, which may help to avoid this problem.
Socks for Better Hygiene
Well-fitting socks go a long way in protecting your feet from a lot of problems. From skin irritations to blisters, it is all mitigated a lot if you have the habit of wearing clean socks with your skates.
If you’re at a skate park and rent a pair of rollerblades, it is probably a good idea to wear a pair of long socks. No one wants to step into someone else’s sweat.
Additionally, if you have a disease like diabetes, you must wear socks; because even minor blisters can take a long time to heal. And It is not just blisters, you can also develop fungal infections which are a serious pain to get rid of. So, wearing a pair of nice and thick socks can do a lot of good to you.
Never wear the same socks for too long. Roller Skating is a very dynamic activity and thus makes your feet sweat a lot. Even with breathable socks, sweat and germs do start to accumulate which can also lead to infections. So, it is probably a good idea to clean them regularly.
Best Sock Material
Now that you know about why socks are so important while roller skating, let’s discuss what type of socks you should be wearing.
Coolmax fiber socks or antimicrobial socks are ideal for roller skating because they provide the necessary protection and ventilation required for keeping your feet healthy.
One thing to clarify is that you should never wear cotton socks for skating. Cotton is very comfortable to wear casually. But for an activity like roller skating, it is a terrible material.
They lose their shape too fast. And washing a pair of cotton socks will almost always ruin its elasticity. It makes it bunch up under your shin and cause irritation.
Cotton absorbs moisture very well. But it takes ages to dry. When you skate wearing cotton socks, the sweat will be right next to your skin. Try to avoid socks made out of synthetic material too. These sorts of socks make your feet sweat more.
Double Layering Is Great for Skating
Double laying is exactly what it sounds like. It means having two layers of fabric between your feet and the lining of your roller skates. You could achieve this effect by wearing two socks- one on top of the other, or wear a pair of socks that come with a double layer of fabric.
It is optimal for preventing blisters, as two layers of fabric prevent the friction between your foot and the leather of the skate shoe a lot more than one thin layer.
Wearing the right kind of socks for the right activity is a very good way of ensuring that you have healthy feet. This is especially true for roller skating. This is a very dynamic activity where sweat and friction are constantly trying to grate on your feet.
Socks stand as a solid defense against the onslaught of these problems and this is why most roller skaters Wear (long) socks.