Sharpening Steels are a key element to proper edge maintenance. Not only is it the finishing step of a proper sharpening (from a stone or electric sharpener), but a quick "steeling" is also recommended once for every 15-20 minutes of prep time to help keep the very fine edges of your knife from folding to the side. This practice makes a big difference in how your kitchen knives feel and perform, and will also help reduce the frequency of stone or electric grinder sharpening. Choose a size that is at least as long as your primary knife, in fact, most cooks find even longer steels easier and safer to use.
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