Can You Wear Compression Socks While Playing Basketball?

Besides the jersey, basketball players wear additional clothing to help them perform better and recover faster. This type of clothing includes compression socks and compression tights. Basketball players who train regularly and play many games should wear compression socks.

You can wear compression socks while playing basketball, which has many health benefits. Compression socks promote blood circulation from the ankle up throughout the body. This speeds up leg regeneration, reduces tiredness, and prevents cramps.

In the rest of this post, I will tell you the benefits of wearing compression socks and which socks I recommend you buy. And why do basketball players wear compression tights.

Should you wear compression socks while playing basketball?

Compression socks have many health benefits, reducing many of the injuries that can occur to basketball players. The most common injuries in basketball are various knee and ankle injuries. Leg injuries are most common in basketball because there is a lot of running, jumping, and moving around in contact with other players. However, most injuries occur because the foot is not aligned correctly when contact is made because the muscles are not warmed up enough or because of poor recovery.

In addition to leg injuries, basketball players often suffer from blisters. See what socks you need to wear to prevent unpleasant blisters.

Wearing compression socks during your workout/match will warm up your leg muscles faster and speed up blood circulation throughout your body. This reduces leg tiredness and prevents cramps during gameplay. It is also recommended to wear compression socks after training/match if you want to speed up the recovery of your legs so that you are sooner ready for new efforts.

In addition to compression socks, basketball players also wear other long socks. There are 5 reasons why basketball players wear long basketball socks.

Compression Socks vs Compression Calf Sleeves
Compression Socks vs Compression Calf Sleeves

Two types of compression socks can be worn while playing basketball. These are compression socks you put on like regular socks and go up to your knees. The other is compression calf sleeves, which go from the ankle to the knee.

The difference between these two garments is that the socks cover more of the leg than a compression sleeve. Both serve the same purpose by pushing the blood from the ankle upwards.

I also suggest you read this post about which socks are worn by professional NBA basketball players that you can buy. I will tell you what are the characteristics of quality socks so that you will be able to choose them for yourself.

How tight should compression socks be?

Compression stockings have different levels to indicate how tight the compression stocking is. Every seller of compression stockings should specify which level the compression stockings are. There are levels of compression stockings:

  • 8-15 mmHg (mild)
  • 15-20 mmHg (medium), 
  • 20-30 mmHg (firm), 
  • 30-40 mmHg (extra firm) and 
  • 40-50 mmHg.

The most common are 15-20 mmHg or 20-30 mmHg and are suitable for sports use. Those with a higher compression level are socks prescribed by a doctor for patients who need compression socks due to health problems.

Below are some suggestions of my favorite compression socks, which can be used for running, basketball, cycling, etc.

CopperZen Compression Socks – Best value for the price

Fabric Type: 88% Nylon, 12% Copper ions (clinically proven antifungal)

Compression level: 20-30 mmHg

Size: S to XL

You will achieve relief in your feet and prevent the formation of fungi by wearing CopperZen Compression Socks. These compression socks will help you stay on your feet for hours and enjoy your favorite activities again instead of being forced to sit down every 10 minutes.

And with your purchase, you’ll receive 3 free bonuses worth over $100 to improve your diet and health and get rid of leg pain caused by reduced blood flow in your body in just 15 seconds.

Feetures Graduated Compression Light Cushion Knee High – Super Soft and Comfortable

Fabric Type: 87% Nylon, 13% Spandex

Compression level: 15-20 mmHg

Size: S to XL

2XU unisex-adult Recovery Compression Sock – Best Post Recovery Socks

Fabric type: 78% nylon, 13% cotton, 9% Lycra®

Compression level: 28 to 33 mmHg

Size: S to L

Physix Gear Sport Compression Socks – Best price

Fabric type: 70% Nylon, 30% Spandex

Compression level: 20 to 30 mmHg

Size: S to XXL

Do basketball players wear compression tights?

Basketball players wear compression tights because they warm up the muscles during the game, speed up blood circulation, and absorb a lot of sweat. This helps players to be in better shape for the game and prevents injury or reduces the soreness of tired muscles.

NBA basketball players also often wear compression leggings because they give their legs the support they need during a busy game schedule. These are the benefits of compression tights:

  • they warm the muscles
  • speeds up blood circulation, and
  • absorb sweat.

Compression tights warm the muscles

Professional basketball players spend a lot of time recovering and stretching to prevent injuries. That’s why they also wear compression leggings during the game to warm up the leg muscles that are most vulnerable to injury. The warmed muscles are better prepared, and it is more difficult for an injury to occur. These leggings are especially used by athletes who have already suffered an injury and want to prevent it from happening again.

NBA players wear 3/4 compression tights
NBA players wear 3/4 compression tights

Compression splints speed up blood circulation

Basketball is an explosive and fast-paced sport; the fast movement also speeds up blood circulation throughout the body. Increased blood circulation throughout the body warms the body, prevents cramps, and keeps the body rested for longer. The extra compression provided by compression tights further speeds up blood circulation and body regeneration.

Compression tights absorb sweat

There are two types of compression tights: one is shorts, and the other is 3/4 tights. The 3/4 tights cover more skin area and can therefore absorb more sweat. The manufacturers of such tights also use quick-drying materials so that the sports can stay dry for as long as possible.

Why do basketball players wear tights on one leg?

Many basketball players wear tight/leg sleeves on only one leg to prevent re-injury. Leg sleeves worn by basketball players on one leg only are often more elastic and offer more support than regular compression leggings. Most players wear leg warmers on their knees or calves.

Calf leg sleeve
Calf leg sleeve

Leg Sleeves, worn by basketball players on one leg only, are thicker and more compressive than regular tights. Regular compression leg tights are designed to prevent and warm up uninjured muscles. On the other hand, leg sleeves for one leg are designed to warm up muscles that have been damaged in the past and prevent re-injury. Basketball players usually wear them when returning from injury.


My name is Gregor and I'm a sports and fashion enthusiast. Like you, I want my clothes to be good quality and comfortable. I hope my articles will help you choose the right underwear for you.

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