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Don't Expect to Wear your Compression Socks in Kona on Race Day

Those of you racing next month in Kona at the Ironman World Championship race take note, the World Triathlon Corporation (WTC) has thrown a curve ball at you. Read the excerpt below written by Brian Brode at the Examiner.com:

Despite their growing popularity, the fans of the therapeutic hose, who endure sneers and jeers, now have a new foe. World Triathlon Corporation (WTC), the organizers and rule making body of Ironman Hawaii, has just added a new regulation to this year’s championship race. According to the “2009 Athlete Information Guide,” which states, in part, during the race, “Any garment, such as tights, compression socks, tube socks, medical tape, etc. that conceals body marking on the calves, will not be permitted.” According to the frequented Slowtwitch.com triathlon forum the rationale for the new rule is to continue the sport’s long tradition of marking the athlete’s age on their calves. The so-called “body marking” serves as an identifier for the competitors to determine if they are passing (or being passed) by someone in their age group and concealing it may put the sock adorned at an advantage. (Ironman Hawaii Bans Compression Socks via Examiner.com)

The compression sock craze while racing has steadily been gaining ground and probably would have been at an all time high this year. Whether it’s a fad or not this has to be a major blow to the triathlon manufactures who target this market, especially the way the economy is.

Don't expect to see people racing like this in Kona this year.
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Pictures from 2008 Ironman World Championship coverage from TRIJUICE.com