Some Beginner Info On Wetsuits

In wetsuit, Wetsuits on March 21, 2009 at 7:04 pm

Let me begin with an explanation what a wetsuit actually is. It is a protection suit used in sports like swimming, surfing, windsurfing, kitesurfing, scuba diving, triathlon and others. All water sport activities can benefit from using a wetsuit. It function is to keep you warm and protect you from cold water.

How does a wetsuit work?

A thin layer of water is trapped between your skin and the wetsuit. This water is heated by your body and then acts as insulation. The neoprene in the wetsuit itself also has very good insulating capabilities. It is interesting to note that wetsuits are less effective at greater depths of water.

What Is A Wetsuit Made Of?

Neoprene is the best thing since sliced bread when it comes to wetsuits. This synthetic rubber fabric contains lots and lots of small bubbles that contain gas and therefore provides surfers, swimmers etc with insulation. Neoprene is later cut into differently shaped panels and sewn together to make a wetsuit. Wetsuits come in different thicknesses. The degree of warmth offered by a particular wetsuit depends on the thickness of the neoprene used in its construction. Neoprene thickness varies between 2 mm and 6 mm.

Wetsuits can be made of other materials, too, and additional fabrics such as wool and titanium are added for even greater warmth and body heat retention.

The type of stitches is also very important when it comes to wetsuit productions. Normal stitches mean holes in your wetsuits and cold water flushing in. So at the moment the best seams are made using a blindstitch technique and additionally sealed using liquid taping.

As far as the structure of a wetsuit goes, wetsuits usually come with zippers. These are often located at the back of the suit, and sometimes on the chest or shoulders of the garment. There are some wetsuits that have come into the market recently ” these are so stretchable that the user can put it on using only the neck opening.

Some wetsuits also have removable sleeves and legs, but the overall performance of the wetsuits is worse in this case. One more feature to mention is lining. Neoprene is lined with nylon that makes it easier to put on and much more durable.

Types of Wetsuits

Most popular wetsuit models are shorty, spring suit, full suit and winter wetsuit. They range from wetsuits meant for summer surfing to wetsuit for cold winter days. But either way the most important thing here is fit. The wetsuit should fit you – meaning it should feel tight. Otherwise water will rush in and you will feel cold. Wetsuit should also be tight around the neck, wrists and ankles so that water can not come in. Just not to tight, make sure that you can breathe and move comfortably. If you get a good wetsuit and if it fits you right you can surf, swim, dive etc at some really low temperatures.


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