Best Men’s Wetsuit Jackets: A Brief History
The first wetsuits were not really designed with aquatic activities in mind. They were developed for use in the Antarctic where it was necessary to keep warm even when temperatures dropped below freezing. However, these early suits did have a few advantages over their landlocked counterparts. First, they could be worn without any protection at all.
Second, they were lighter than their landlocked cousins and thus easier to move around in. Finally, they had a number of pockets which made them ideal for carrying items such as snacks or other personal belongings.
In the years following World War II, the demand for wetsuits increased dramatically due to the development of new sports like surfing and water skiing. These new sports required that swimmers wear suits which were light enough to allow them to perform these activities but still provided adequate protection from the cold.
As the years went by, manufacturers began producing better quality wetsuit jackets and selling them at lower prices. By the 1970s, there was a large market for wetsuits; however, they weren’t exactly cheap. Even today, some of these jackets are priced well above $300!
You don’t need to spend that kind of money, though. There are plenty of inexpensive wetsuit jackets on the market which will allow you to stay warm while you swim in the lake or surf the waves.
Wetsuits are made of a special kind of material called latex. This material is extremely flexible and allows for a full range of motion while you’re swimming. At the same time, it has excellent insulating properties and will keep you warm in even the coldest of waters.
There are a number of different types of latex available on the market. For example, you may come across suits which are made of chlorinated rubber, vinyl, or isobutylene-isoprene rubber. They all have different names, but they all do the same thing-keep you warm when you’re in cold water.
Some wetsuits are made from neoprene, which is more expensive than the other types of latex. However, it’s generally a little warmer and quite a bit more durable. It tends to be better in colder water (under 60F).
Sleeves & Zippers
Most wetsuit jackets are sleeveless so that swimmers can enjoy the freedom of movement provided by this type of garment. However, sleeved versions are available for swimmers who prefer this design.
The main reason why most wetsuits don’t have sleeves is that they get in the way when you’re trying to swim. It’s also much more difficult to get these items on and off. The major problem with sleeveless wetsuit jackets, however, is that it’s difficult to adjust your body temperature if you get too hot. When this happens, your only choices are to take the entire wetsuit off or just endure the feeling of being too hot and sweat through it.
Most wetsuits have a full zipper down the front. This allows you to get the suit on and off with relative ease. Some models feature a front zipper with a flap which can be buttoned overtop of it to give swimmers more support and warmth when they need it.
Most wetsuit jackets have two or three pockets which are very handy for storing items like keys, money, credit cards, and any other valuables you don’t want to get wet. Some wetsuits even have an optional hood which can be useful in extreme cold and windy conditions.
There are also a few wetsuit models available which don’t have a front opening zipper. Instead, these items have flexible seams down the front (similar to the flexible seams on the sides of regular swimsuits). These models can be just as warm as regular wetsuit jackets, but they’re much more difficult to get on and off. It’s probably a good idea to try these on before you buy them to ensure a proper fit.
Getting the Right Fit
It’s very important that your wetsuit fits properly. If it’s too big, it will be less effective at keeping you warm and may even impair your swimming ability. If it’s too small, you’ll feel constricted and won’t be able to enjoy your time in the water.
When trying on a wetsuit, you’ll want to make sure that it fits properly in the following areas:
Armpits: When you raise your arms over your head, the edge of the suit shouldn’t fold over onto your body. Instead, it should remain flat and tight against your skin. This is particularly important in the shoulders and chest. If there’s excess material, it will flap in the water and decrease your swimming efficiency.
Ankles & Feet: The ankles and feet are usually not a problem on men’s wetsuits, but they can be on women’s wetsuits and kids’ wetsuits. When you squat, the extra material should just loosely bunch up at the top of your feet. It shouldn’t fold over onto your feet.
Waist & Upper Thighs: The suit shouldn’t be so tight that it’s constricting your breathing or blood flow, but it should be tight enough that it doesn’t flap loosely around your waist and upper thighs when you squat. It should also be tight enough to stay firmly against your body when you’re in the water. If this isn’t the case, try a different size.
Elbows & Knees: Wetsuit fabric is generally very tough, but the elbows and knees are usually reinforced with thicker, softer rubber. Elbow and knee pads are usually not included with your wetsuit, but some models do include them. If they aren’t included, it’s a good idea to buy some and wear them anytime you dive below the water line. Your elbows and knees take a lot of abuse under normal conditions.
Sources & references used in this article:
INSIDE 2XU by OK OK – 2xu.com
My shopping cart by SL Halson
DELAYED ONSET MUSCLE SORENESS: MYTHS AND REALITIES by AJ De Luigi – BENEFITS, 2018 – racingtheplanetstore.com
Our mothers called us little fish by MD Ilona Barash – BENEFITS, 2018 – racingtheplanetstore.com
Material requirements for the design of performance sportswear by A woman wears a blue Snuggie
Cardiovascular and respiratory effects of the neoprene wetsuit in non-immersed divers. by C Candy – Eureka Street, 2017 – search.informit.com.au