How to Find the Perfect Wetsuit

how to pick a wetsuit 

What if I told you that the world’s greatest wetsuit has arrived and is now available to you? The suit provides perfect buoyancy, uncompromised mobility, and maximum swimming speed—all at a price lower than competitors.

Sorry to get your hopes up, but this singular preeminent suit doesn't exist. Rather, the perfect wetsuit does exist, but what’s perfect for you may vary significantly from what’s perfect for another athlete. The quintessential wetsuit should fit your specific needs, fit and budget, and it’s out there. But finding it can be a costly process without some insider tips on what specifically to look for.

Comfort and Fit

Moving around with an extra layer of blubber can feel quite limiting, which is why it’s crucial to try on and test out your new suit before you commit. You’re looking for a suit that fits like a glove. If you find the suit has a bit of bunching and extra neoprene in your armpits, this is indicative of a suit a size or two too big.

Mobility through the shoulders may be the single most important feature. The wetsuit should fit snug and be fitted to your arms and underarms without too much stretch as you reach overhead. Swing your arms through freestyle motions to see if you feel any constriction and ensure comfort. Feeling a bit of compression from the suit is a good thing, but major limitation in movement is not.

It’s inevitable to feel slightly claustrophobic the first time you put on a wetsuit, especially around your neck. Finding a comfortable collar that fits tight without being too low or wide to your collarbone is key. You will get used to the feeling of the suit fitting relatively high on your neck, but be sure you have a bit of room to breathe, too.

 A tight seal around the neck is important to keep too much water from entering your suit and water-logging it. When too much water gets into your suit it will feel super heavy, ultimately defeating the purpose of wearing a wetsuit all together.

  • 1
  • of
  • 2
NEXT

About the Author

Los Angeles-based stroke mechanic Bryan Mineo created a unique biomechanics-based methodology to help swimmers move more efficiently through the water. Bryan's swim coaching business, The Swim Mechanic, works with a broad spectrum of athletes in the open water, as well as the pool in both Dallas and Los Angeles.

Los Angeles-based stroke mechanic Bryan Mineo created a unique biomechanics-based methodology to help swimmers move more efficiently through the water. Bryan's swim coaching business, The Swim Mechanic, works with a broad spectrum of athletes in the open water, as well as the pool in both Dallas and Los Angeles.

Discuss This Article