Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Sponsored Blog Post: Choosing a Wetsuit

A wetsuit is an essential piece of kit if you’ve going surfing, kayaking or windsurfing in the UK. Taking a dip in the sea or a lake is an entirely more pleasurable experience when wearing a wetsuit. The cost of wetsuits varies considerably, so before you buy, you should ask yourself where and when are you most likely to use it.
A shortie wetsuit might be just the ticket if you’re only going to use it in the summer or pack it in your suitcase when jetting off to warmer climes. However if you’re a hardened surfer, and intend to ride the waves in the middle of winter, you will need to invest in a full-length wetsuit. The wetsuit also needs to be thicker so that you can stay in the waves for longer. Wetsuits, which are made out of neoprene, an elastic rubber material, come in various thickness. In general the higher the number, the greater the thickness (measured in millimetres).
The wetsuit works by catching a thick layer of water between you and the neoprene. Your body heat warms this layer of water and as long as the wetsuit is a snug fit, you should stay warm. An ill-fitting wetsuit will allow a constant trickle of cold water to enter the wetsuit. When trying on a wetsuit it should feel tight all over. Once it’s wet it will feel bigger. Most wetsuits have zips so that you can get in and out of the suit. Long zips make it easier to get the wetsuit on and off. Short zips, however, help keep the suit warmer as there will be fewer stitch holes to let cold water in.
Another feature you might want to consider when choosing a wetsuit is the type of stitching. Overlock stitching can be uncomfortable and cause skin irritation. Much better is flatlock stitching or blind stitching. Look for the term ‘steamer’ to indicate a wetsuit where the stitches are ‘waterproof’. This prevents water flooding in, which has a positive effect on the warmth of the suit. Expect to pay more for liquid taping. This is where special rubber is used, sealing the stitches for greater strength and warmth.
Chelston Direct stocks a range of mens, ladies and kids wetsuits and rash vests from established manufactures including Gul, Typhoon, Body Glove and Osprey.

1 comment:

Ed Barney said...

some very interesting stuff on here for someone like myself doing a dissertation thesis on commercialisation in surfing