Best Crossfit Socks Reviewed and Rated for Performance
What many athletes may not realize is that having the right workout gear can mean the difference between a subpar and an outstanding training session. Perhaps the idea of specific Crossfit socks sounds unnecessary to you, but we are here to assure you that the right pair of these can not only improve your performance but also speed up your recovery and reduce the risk of injury.
Crossfit is a sport involving many different disciplines: running, lifting, other types of cardio, strength training, you name it. We strived to include designs that work for all of these at the same time so that you don’t have to change socks in the middle of your workout. So, sit back, relax, and take a look at our selection of the best models in this category!
In a Hurry? The test winner after 8 hrs of research
X-LOCK Compression Technology
Anatomically Shaped Footbed
Seamless Toe Area
Minimizes Shin Splints
Top 10 Socks for CrossFit
1. U Elite X:Lock
X-LOCK Compression Technology
Anatomically Shaped Footbed
Seamless Toe Area
Minimizes Shin Splints
Difficult to Pull On
Material Not Soft Enough
2XU is a brand founded by Jamie Hunt, a former professional triathlete. Over the years, they have grown to become the most technical brand of sportswear, and a prime example of that is their Elite X:Lock compression design. These knee-high socks are created to withstand the hardest of workouts and sports activities, largely thanks to the strong compression they provide to the calf and shin areas.
The Elite X: Lock is made from a combination of nylon for superior durability and elastane for multi-directional stretch. It has an anatomically shaped footbed with added padding underneath the ball of the foot and heel for extra comfort. The toe cage is seamless for a blister-free training session.
The compression that we mentioned comes in the form of X-LOCK technology. This holds your foot in place, balances your heel strike and makes your toe-off more explosive. The compression to your shin, calves, and tendons saves energy and speeds up the recovery process. Not only that but also thanks to this compression system, shin splints will be a thing of the past.
The 2XU Elite X: Lock is certainly among the most technical designs in our arsenal, as its brand promises it is. You will enjoy its compression technology as well as comfort features, and the extra stability in the arch and ankles will only serve to make you more powerful as time goes on.
2. CEP Athletic Compression Run
20-30 mmHg Compression
Breathable Ribbed Pattern
No Leg Pain
Difficult to Pull On
CEP is a brand specializing in compression gear, part of a larger hi-tech medical corporation. Their designs are a favorite among athletes as they are made from high-quality materials and with comfort and performance in mind. The Athletic Compression Run has the highest rate of compression on this list (20-30 mmHg), which is a combination of gradual and consistent in certain areas. With this option, muscle soreness, shin splints, and other hard-workout related injuries will be easily forgotten.
The Athletic Compression Run is made from polyamide for durability and colorfastness and spandex for a solid stretch. It features compression technology in which medically engineered yarns wrap around the leg over 400 times to apply precise pressure where it matters. This compression reduces pain related to overusing the muscles, helping you recover faster.
Among other features of this design, we have to emphasize the way it molds like a second skin, providing an outstanding fit that doesn’t lack flexibility. Additionally, there are built-in air vents that allow the air to freely pass in and out of the ribbed pattern at the front. This can reduce the surface of your skin for up to 6 degrees F.
The CEP Athletic Compression Run is made by a healthcare company specializing in sports medicine, so you know their products are centered around improving the health and well-being of their customers. With this option, you will be safe in the knowledge that your legs and feet are taken care of, and that you can focus solely on improving your performance next time you’re at the gym.
3. MudGear Compression Obstacle Race
Abrasion Resistant Yarn
Rope Burn Protection
15-20 mmHg Compression
Superior Drainage & Comfort
For Obstacle Course Type Training
Difficult to Put On
As its very name says, this design from MudGear is created for obstacle course type training sessions, especially if they’re outdoors; meaning they’re perfect for Crossfit. The Obstacle Race is tough, performance-enhancing and has a 15-20 mmHg graduated compression. What makes it stand out is the protective backing that allows you to climb rope or traverse rope without getting bruises or scrapes on your legs.
This design is built using a tough yarn with 168 needlepoint compression. The compression is what improves your performance and recovery time, so you have more energy to execute the next move. The resilient yarn keeps out dirt and debris as you train, while a layer of protection in the back reduces the risk of rope burn and other gashes.
The arch area has a special support band, and the bottom of the foot is outfitted with drainage zones and cushioning for a workout that extends for longer than usual.
The MudGear Compression Obstacle Race means business. It is a hard-wearing design meant for those who don’t give up, and you will notice a significant difference in the way you perform with and without it. Their emphasis is on protection and compression as they propel your legs all the way to the end of the WOD.
4. Under Armour All Sport Performance
Flex Zones Against Bunching
Y Heel Pocket
Gets Holes Quickly
Not for Wide Calves
Under Armour is a champion of sportswear for a wide variety of athletic activities. Their products are made to improve form and help break personal records, and the same is true for their All Sport Performance socks. These are made from a combination of polyester and nylon for durability, as well as spandex for that much-needed stretch. With their tall height, these will keep you protected against injuries regardless of what your WOD looks like.
This UA design has the ability to dry fast and wicks away moisture for a comfortable, worry-free experience. It features odor-resistant technology that inhibits the development of microbes that are the main cause of unpleasant smells. The All Sport Performance has cushioning strategically placed along the design for shock-absorption and comfort.
You will love the arch support which reduces foot fatigue and improves circulation, as well as a Y-stitch heel that provides comfort and security. There are even flex zones all over which prevent bunching of the material.
It doesn’t matter if you’re running, jumping, lifting weights, doing squats or anything in between - the UA All Sport Performance will have your back. It is carefully engineered to ensure that your feet are dry and free to move, as well as to reduce their tiredness at the end of a workout. What more could we possibly want out of a design of this type?
5. Adidas Rivalry Field
Climalite Moisture-Wicking Technology
Ankle and Arch Compression Bands
Targeted Cushioned Areas
Not Enough Compression
Yes, this is technically a design meant for soccer. However, it is not unusual that soccer socks are used in Crossfit training - after all, they come with all the features necessary for a good, safe Crossfit WOD. The Rivalry Field reaches up to the knee and it comes with Adidas’ special Climalite technology for improved moisture-wicking. It is super lightweight and has cushioning specifically designed to improve agility.
The Rivalry Field is made from polyester, nylon, and natural latex rubber which all work together to create one tough-wearing product. Add a little bit of spandex in there, and you got yourself a winning combination! Moisture-wicking is achieved thanks to the Climalite construction that helps pull moisture away from your skin and out to the external layers of the design where it can evaporate.
In terms of comfort and support, targeted cushioned areas deliver shock absorption and also keep you feeling light and ready for anything. There are also compression bands in the arch and ankle areas that improve stability and stave off fatigue.
Despite not being made specifically for Crossfit, the Rivalry Field from Adidas is one of the frontrunners of our selection. It keeps you feeling secure and quick on your feet, while not sacrificing any of the protective features you may need in your more demanding exercises. Face your next WOD without fear in the Adidas Rivalry Field!
6. Stance Fusion Athletic
High Elastane Percentage
Seamless Toe Construction
Anatomically Correct Fit
Not As Soft
Stance is a brand which has turned making socks into an art form. They are proud of their innovations, creative designs, and enviable performance features, and thus their Fusion Athletic model found its way into our list. This is a crew height, meaning it may not be suitable for deadlifts, but it will certainly keep you comfortable and supported throughout other types of exercises.
The Fusion Athletic is made from a combination of polyester and nylon for that durability we’re looking for in Crossfit socks, as well as from a higher-than-normal percentage of spandex and elastane. This makes the Fusion Athletic incredibly stretchy and form-fitting, so you don’t have to worry if your feet are going to feel comfortable.
These come with an anatomically correct left and right fit, as well as a seamless toe construction that ensures there will be no blisters. The Fusion Athletic has elastic arch support and a deep heel pocket for a better fit. Finally, there are toe vents in the front for increased breathability.
The Fusion Athletic comes equipped with all the features that are key in maintaining a good rhythm and giving it your all in your next workout. It promotes the freedom of movement and proper airflow through the design, and it also comes in a variety of color combinations to introduce a little color into your next session.
7. Thorlos Experia XCCU
No Chafing or Blisters
THOR-WICK COOL Fibers
Mesh Polyester for Breathability
Lightweight and Carefree Feeling
Pills After Washing
Designed for carefree feet as the brand itself says, the Experia XCCU is a multi-sport low cut model that features many of Thorlos’ signature technologies and innovations. The XCCU has anatomically shaped pads for protection against blisters and pain, as well as protection against chafing in the heel area. It is made from special THOR-WICK COOL fibers and has an aerodynamic fit that feels like a second skin.
The THOR-WICK COOL material is centered on the ball of the foot and the heel and delivers superior moisture management against sweating. Other materials included in the construction are nylon for a lightweight feel and contoured fit, mesh polyester for ventilation, as well as elastic for a bit of a stretch.
The pads we mentioned before can be found at the Achilles Tendon to reduce chafing and to function as a heel lock. They are also in the ball and heel areas to absorb shock and protect against long-term damage.
The obvious downside to the XCCU is that it is a low cut option, but despite that, it provides more than enough protection in a WOD that doesn’t include deadlifts or rope climbs. If your focus is on exercises that don’t put your legs in danger of burns or scrapes, then this Thorlos technical wonder will definitely be the right choice for you.
8. Rikedom Compression
15-20 mmHg Gradual Compression
Promotes Muscle Recovery
Lightly Padded Footbed
Moisture-Wicking & Quick-Drying
Medical Grade Compression
Won’t Stay Up
Loses Compression with Time
For an ultimate compression design, reach for the Rikedom Compression. These knee-high socks come with 15-20 mmHg gradual compression that is medical grade. This means that it not only aids in muscle recovery in training, but can also be used post-surgery to reduce swelling, pain, problems with circulation, and numbness. Along with that, the Rikedom Compression is made from moisture-wicking materials and is perfect for more sensitive feet.
The compression this design is outfitted with improves oxygen circulation and reduces the buildup of lactic acid in the leg muscles while you train. This means that after-workout soreness won’t be as pronounced, and you won’t have to worry about any pain or inflammation. The compression is at its strongest at the ankle, slowly decreasing up the leg.
To reduce sweating and the development of bad odors, the Rikedom Compression is made from moisture-wicking materials that dry quickly and prevent the growth of bacteria and fungi. This promotes a healthy environment for your feet and makes sure you don’t develop an infection of some kind.
Finally, at the bottom of this design is light padding for shock absorption and comfort that will prove to be beneficial in your next workout session. The Rikedom Compression is all about making you feel good during and post-training, and your legs and muscles will be grateful for the added support.
9. Reebok Low Cut Performance
Reinforced Heel & Toe
Simple Yet Effective
Slips Off Heel
If knee-high or compression Crossfit socks are not your jam and if you prefer a sleeker look and more exposure to your legs, then you can’t go wrong with Reebok. This brand designs incredibly comfortable, high-performance socks that can be used for a variety of disciplines. When those summer days roll around and you can’t be bothered to pull on your knee-highs, opt for the Reebok Low Cut Performance instead.
This option is made from 95% polyester, meaning it is incredibly durable and won’t lose its shape over time. Polyester also means better colorfastness, so if you get a colored version, the dye won’t bleed into your skin or footwear. The other 5% of the material combination is reserved for spandex. These elastic fibers will ensure that the Low Cut Performance fits snugly and doesn’t bunch up as you exercise.
On top of this, there is light cushioning which enhances comfort, and a reinforced heel and toe area to provide both support and durability.
While the Low Cut Performance from Reebok doesn’t come with any special technologies or advanced features, we have to admit that its simplicity doesn’t compromise its effectiveness. These will keep you comfortable and won’t hinder your movements in the least, no matter what activity you’re engaging in.
10. PUMA No Show
Mesh Ventilation Zones
Moisture Control System
No Arch Support
While a no-show design may not be your first choice when it comes to Crossfit socks, we still felt we needed to include some good options of these as well, since not everyone is a fan of knee-highs. This is how the PUMA No Show came into play, a seemingly simple design that peeks just above your trainers. It doesn’t offer compression, but in it, your movements will be unrestricted and you won’t be overheating no matter how hard you go.
The PUMA No Show is made with special mesh zones that provide ventilation. Air will easily flow in and out of these to cool down your feet and allow them to breathe. On top of that, there is also a moisture control system. This system helps transfer sweat and other moisture away from your feet and towards the outside, keeping you dry and comfortable.
To make you feel supported and stable while you train, the PUMA No Show also has a special sport cushion in the bottom, for a touch of shock-absorption.
These come in a pack of 8, so you definitely get your money’s worth for their price. They may not be ideal for a Crossfit workout, but if it’s too hot for knee-highs and you don’t feel like pulling on your compression socks, these will do just fine.
Criteria Used for Evaluation
Protection against equipment as well as impact damage is essential in this training regimen.
There is no doubt that Crossfit is one of the hardest training regimens there is. It combines many different disciplines into one workout designed to break you both physically and mentally, so you can rebuild yourself stronger and better than you were before. You use your own weight, you use gym weights, ropes, tires, different machines, and bars… With such intense workouts and heavy (and hard) equipment, some accidents are bound to happen.
You can protect yourself from training-related injuries in a couple of ways: by being conscious of your movements and making sure you’re doing the exercises correctly, and by wearing the proper gear (especially footwear) which can help reduce the stress put on your body.
This is where our Crossfit socks come in.
They can’t very well lighten the load of your weights or magically improve your fitness levels, but they can certainly help in some cases.
First, we have protection against physical injury. This is why many options on our list are knee-high and also padded in certain areas around the leg. When you’re doing deadlifts (or any type of lift where you’re raising the weight bar off the floor in front of your shins) or rope climbs, you need some kind of a barrier between the rough surface of the equipment and your skin. Knee-highs help in preventing burns and scrapes.
Then we also have protection against lasting injury to your joints and muscles. During all sorts of jumping, running, leaping and similar, every time we land, impact from hitting the ground travels up our feet and into our legs. Over time, this repeated shock leads to damage, especially to our joints, such as ankles and knees.
Socks that are padded at the bottom provide shock-absorption and thus keep our joints healthier in the long run. They reduce the force of the impact and protect your ankles, knees, and hips from lasting damage.
When you’re looking for your next pair of socks for this sport, don’t forget the importance of proper protection.
Compression can help prevent muscle soreness and speed up recovery.
Compression socks are not a new thing. They’ve been around in both the healthcare and sportswear industries for years (decades), and thus it is no surprise that they are a favorite among Crossfit enthusiasts as well. With how demanding the sport is, it is only natural that you should wear socks that help you save energy and help your muscles recover faster after an intense WOD.
What is compression anyway? Simply put, this is pressure. These types of socks are tighter than usual, as they are meant to keep your muscles ‘contained’ and apply pressure to them.
There are different levels of compression. In our list, you will find the ‘standard’ compression of about 15-20 mmHg (a unit of measurement for pressure), but also a design with 20-30 mmHg, which is more tightening than the standard.
The reason these options have compression in a certain range is that the compression level is not the same in all parts of the sock. It is at its highest around the ankle, as your ankle needs the most support in all of the activities you’re doing, and it gradually becomes weaker the further up you go.
Which one you will choose depends entirely on you and how you feel. More compression doesn’t necessarily mean quicker recovery or less pain. It is important that you listen to your body and if something doesn’t feel right - if the compression is so high that it is causing numbness or a lack of blood flow - you need to act accordingly.
There are many benefits to compression, the most important being that it reduces post-workout muscle soreness and helps your legs get better faster after you left your heart and soul on the gym floor. If you’re serious about your Crossfit, you will invest in a pair of solid compression socks.
Familiarize yourself with different materials found in this type of socks.
You have read the words several times in our list: polyester, polyamide, nylon, spandex, elastane… These are all material names that are commonly used to make all different types of socks, including Crossfit socks.
While knowing the details of each one is not a requirement for purchasing a great pair, you may find that familiarizing yourself with the materials will help you make a better choice. Here, we outline the main characteristics of each type of fabric and help you understand why they’re a good choice for this type of exercise.
Polyester/Polyamide: These two are similar materials in almost every way. They’re synthetic, incredibly durable and with decent levels of breathability. Polyester and polyamide are also colorfast, meaning that they retain color for longer and socks made from these are at no danger of bleeding dye.
Downsides to synthetic materials are that they are not biodegradable or environmentally-friendly. They are also not as soft or as comfortable as some other types of materials.
Nylon: Nylon is also a synthetic material that is added to socks to increase their longevity and resistance against repeated wash cycles. It helps the design hold its shape over time and increases its abrasion and wear and tear resistance, which is essential in hard-hitting workouts.
Spandex/Elastane/Lycra: These three represent the same type of material. Spandex, elastane or Lycra are elastic fibers that make a sock stretchy and accommodating. They also prevent it from slipping down during wear and allow it to preserve its form for longer periods. Stretchiness is what ensures a good fit and a comfortable feeling.
Aside from these, there are also brands that engineer their own materials with superior qualities. However, you don’t necessarily need special technologies or innovative systems to better your performance. Depending on your budget and personal preference, a combination of the materials we described above should work just fine.
Breathable and moisture-wicking designs are important in keeping you comfortable throughout the workout.
Breathability is the design’s ability to let air flow through it, cooling your skin and feet and keeping them dry for longer. In combination with breathability, there is usually moisture wicking as well. This is the ability of the material to pull sweat or other types of moisture away from your feet and to the outside layers of the sock where the moisture evaporates, leaving your feet sweat-free.
Different designs achieve breathability and moisture-wicking in different ways.
For breathability, most commonly there are special mesh areas in the design which improve ventilation. Mesh is thin and porous and air can easily circulate through it, keeping your feet fresh. These mesh zones are typically found at the front of a knee-high sock or over the instep in a low-cut design.
Moisture-wicking is usually the result of a specially developed technology. Coolmax, for example, is a type of polyester with superior moisture-wicking properties, as are Thorlos’ THOR-WICK COOL fibers. Some materials, such as regular polyester, have certain moisture-wicking properties themselves, however, a better effect is achieved through the use of engineering.
In a sport such as Crossfit, it is expected that your body heats up and sweats a lot. Your feet are also bound to sweat, but some breathability and moisture-wicking won’t hurt. Crossfit socks which have these properties can make a world of difference and increase your comfort levels and overall endurance.
Choose the right sock height for your training habits.
When we say model here, we mean the height of the sock. In this guide, we have opted for three different heights: no show (or low cut), crew and knee-high, with the last one being the most prominent.
The reason knee-highs are the most common Crossfit socks is the one we mentioned in our Protection section. They provide protection against hard and heavy equipment, against cuts, scrapes, and burns. If you’re working with heavy loads or unforgiving machines or weights, it would be smart to go for a knee-high design.
Crew and no-show options are for those WODs where you’re not expected to lift or climb a rope, and perhaps for people who don’t like the feel of knee-highs in general. These lower heights provide better mobility and less restriction and obviously help cool the body down in warm surroundings.
On the other hand, with crew and no-show socks, you usually don’t get the compression or the support that is associated with knee-highs. If this is something that is important to you, especially if you are suffering from some time of pain or shin splints, it may be advisable to go for a nice compression knee-high after all.
There is no guarantee that one sock height will make you perform better in your next workout than the other. It is all about personal preference, as well as the environment you’re training in. If you expect it to be cold, wear a more warming, higher design; if it’s going to be hot, a lightweight shorter option would be the best.
Expert Interviews & Opinions
Other Factors to Consider
Despite everything we laid out in this guide, choosing the right pair of Crossfit socks for yourself is not a difficult feat. All you have to do is consider the environment you’re training in, the intensity of your WODs, and what type of design you’re most comfortable with. We tried to explain all of the options in our Criteria section as best we could, and we hope that you walk away from this with some useful insight.
Don’t forget that protection and comfort are the most important aspects here. You need to make sure you are safe while you exercise, and that you don’t develop any blisters or hot spots or other types of injuries.
If you have any more questions on the topic, take a peek at our FAQ after the jump, as we may have already answered it there. We hope you will enjoy your shopping spree and that you get your new favorite pair of Crossfit socks as soon as today!
Frequently Asked Questions
q: Do Crossfit socks have to be knee high?
As we talked about in our Model section, they absolutely do not have to be. Knee-highs are usually recommended because of their protective and compressing qualities, but if you feel like you don’t need these, or are doing an easier circuit or it’s too hot in the gym - you don’t have to limit yourself to tall socks.
Crew and no-shows work just as well, if they will make you more comfortable so you can perform to the best of your ability.
q: What are the benefits of compression?
Compression gear is something that is widely used not only in athletics but also in medicine. The main advantages of compression socks are:
- Better blood flow through the muscles
- Reduced buildup of lactic acid
- Alleviated pain
- Reduced post-workout soreness
- Reduced chance of developing shin-splints
- Reduced swelling if there is any
You can use this type of gear when you’re working out, if you’re sitting for longer periods of time (say, on a plane), or if you’re recovering from leg surgery and in similar situations.
q: Can’t I just wear regular socks for my WODs?
Technically, you can. Nothing is stopping you from wearing regular socks, or even regular training socks while you exercise. As long as they’re comfortable, there are no downsides to these.
However, these designs usually don’t come with some of the features we talked about here, such as protection, compression, moisture-wicking, etc. If you’re interested in enhancing your performance and beating your own personal records, then a Crossfit-specific type of sock would be a better choice.
q: Where can I get good Crossfit footwear?
Any leading manufacturer of training footwear worth its salt should be on board the Crossfit train. This is why you will find excellent models from big names such as Nike, Adidas, Reebok, and PUMA. For more details on what to look for in this type of footwear and which are currently the best options available, check out our Crossfit shoes guide.
q: Are these socks expensive?
The truth is that yes, some of these can be pretty costly. The price depends on the features the design offers, as well as the brand name behind it. If you’re looking for a great design that will offer plenty of benefits, you may need to dig a little deeper into your budget compared to when you’re shopping for regular socks. However, even this isn’t an outrageous expense, and every once in a while you should indulge in order to be the best version of yourself you can be.
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