1. I was wondering what is the purpose for some socks to be low-cut?
  2. How high are socks suitable for which sports? Football/soccer players wear long socks, while some people in gym wear low-cut ones.

Thanks and regards!

  • It's a great question, I've always wondered this. Is there a reason?
    – Fattie
    Jun 22, 2011 at 17:41
  • Outstanding question! Also, would high socks also help in keeping the calf muscle warm/loose for activities where rest is frequent? (asked as a comment since it is relevant but I don't want to edit the original).
    – whaley
    Jun 23, 2011 at 15:20

3 Answers 3


It depends on the sport. Soccer and Football (I'm speaking as an American here) both use long socks to hold the shin guards in place. The shin guards provide extra padding to prevent injuries from errant kicks and tackles. The long socks are also in the team colors so the referees can easily identify which team the players are on even when the jersey isn't visible (such as in a pileup).

Other sports like basketball don't have shin guards and the sock height is more of a personal style as they have changed over the years. Usually the team will be consistent so the players look uniform.


I would think that the long socks in sports would be for some protection. I wear short socks when I go to the gym because I don't like/need the long socks. But do wear medium length socks when rollerblading to pad my chins.


I don't like short socks. My ex was a dancer and she hated long socks (she'd wear ankle length ones). Most of my socks don't quite go halfway up my shins, but I have some that make it to my knees, and those are hiking socks (and are for a small amount of padding in case things go up one's pants, or you're banging into things with your legs).

For sports like footy/soccer/rugby, the length of socks is more like part of the uniform of the sport, like basketball shorts are for basketball.

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