Gradient Zoned Compression socks with style.
More companies follow suit with ways to advance the standard compression sock.
One of the best compression socks to be introduced this year.
Compression socks have become somewhat of the norm for triathletes and runners. With their growing popularity and use, manufacturers are now trying to find ways to tweak and improve the standard compression sock. Which is exactly what 110% has done with the Flat Out Sox.
110% has taken the traditional approach of gradient compression socks one step further by adding "zones". The zones, which are cleverly contained in the graphics of the socks, range from 22-15 mmHg of compression and are intended to function like kinesiology tape.
As you can see the graphics on the socks are laid out in the same pattern that you see kinesiology tape applied to athletes, which is intended to support the major muscle groups of the lower legs.
You can actually see the difference in compression between the "zones" of the sock. The areas with less compression are more transparent.
The padding on the ball of the foot and around the ankle is just about right. We probably have a more minimalist approach to this than most. There seems to be just enough padding to feel when you put the sock on, but you don't notice it in your shoe. Some socks tend to promote "enhanced padding", but this usually leads to blisters or just plain uncomfortableness.
It is tough to see below, but the socks actually have a different pattern ("flowmesh" according to 110%") that allows increased breathability for the foot part of the sock.
Of course the socks are anatomically designed. This is probably more important on these socks than any others since the zones need to be appropriate for each leg.
Although the "zones" are intended to provide more functionality than the average compression sock (or at least we hope that is the purpose), they also add some style to socks. Hold up, don't take that the wrong way. This in no way, shape, or form gives you the "OK" to wear these in public. Yes, they look cool while you are running, or maybe while you are recovering around the house, or under your pants after a hard morning run. But not to the grocery store, not to your kids ballgame, and not to packet pickup. Rant over.
With that said, you can get the Flat Out Sox in 3 different color options:
How to measure: Sock size is determined by your calf measurement. See sock measurement chart. If you fall between sizes, always favor your comfort over the size recommended on the chart.
Put Them To Use
We have been running in (we actually try the stuff we review) the Flat Out Sox for a little over 3 weeks now in various conditions to try to get a good feel for the product.
These socks are "flat out" comfortable. Sorry, had to. The 85% Nylon / 15% Spandex combination makes for a very comfortable feel.
A trend we are noticing as design and innovation increases in compression socks, they are easier to get on. Some of the latest socks we have tested (more reviews coming), all have a unfamiliar feel of ease of getting on. Remember, we have been using and reviewing compression socks since they first hit the endurance market, and there is a big difference now. The same goes for the 110% Flat Out Sox. Even though they are easy to slide on and off, they still provide plenty of support. So, if you are ever thinking of sliding these on in the transition area of a longer race, it would definitely be worth your while and time to look at a newer pair of compressions socks.
As far as testing the "zones", we aren't really sure how to do this. As seen above, the different compression throughout the sock zones are visible. Whether that is an advantage over a standard compression sock is hard to say.
What we can say is that from runs up to 2 hours, to just relaxing and recovering, these socks are some of our favorites.
TriBomb Bottom Line
If you are looking for an upgrade for your compression socks, we promise these will stay at the top of your sock drawer.