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Surfing 3mm wetsuits any good for tri?


Yup, it's all in the subject line really. I've been shown a site that sells 3mm Billabong and other make wetsuits. The site claims that these are a good cheap alternative to a tri wetsuit.

I was wondering whether anybody out there had tried this out. Obviously a surfing suit isn't going to be tailored and designed specifically for swimming, but are they useable?


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    TurtleTurtle Posts: 29

    I'm no expert. But, I don't think so. I was in a 3km swim a few years ago in a Swedish river - definitely deserving a wetsuit. Not knowing a thing, I went to the local dive shop, told him what I was going to do - which is a famous Swedish event, and he was more than happy to sell me - as I've learned now - the wrong kind of wetsuit.

    What's the Billabong made of? I think tri suits are made of neoprene. Mine has some, but a good portion of it is nylon, and it's not a tight fit - it's made to warm the water inside the suit - not keep it out entirely. What's your price range? I've found a pretty nice wetsuit in Sweden by Mormaii Triathlon which wasn't so expensive - but, then again, I haven't compared it to anything else.

    Best of luck,

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    vannenvannen Posts: 9

    The Billabong suit's neoprene, but having researched a bit I think I'm better off paying that bit more and getting a tri-specific suit. It looks like a proper tri suit will be cut to give me flexibility in the shoulders to swim...

    I'm just looking for a reasonable balance of price and usability! I've got to stick to, say, under £170 though.

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    G DawgG Dawg Posts: 4

    I swam London Tri Olympic dist last year in my £65 3mm surf suit, got round in 27 mins, which I was happy with.

    However, I am definitely getting a Tri suit this season as I am sure they are more efficient and better suited for swimming. I have done a little research and there are budget suits for around your / my price range (sub £200). Check out Tri & Run as they have some advertised around this amount. If you get any more info / tips post them back on here, as I hope to make a purchase sometime soon, for the training.

    G [:D]
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    hound doghound dog Posts: 293
    Theres always TriUK where you can hire for the season and buy it if your happy with it or they sell secondhand ones.
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    treefrogtreefrog Posts: 1,242
    Before I started it more seriously, I got roped into a triathlon some years ago and got lendage of a mate's surfing wetsuit for the swim - or modified moving float - in my case. It was actually alright but, now that I've taken it up more seriously I bought a tri wet suit
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    TrisurferTrisurfer Posts: 228
    any one tried surfing in a triathlon wetsuit?

    I was thinking it could be a good summer suit? and could do some open water swimming between sets!!!

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    al_fordal_ford Posts: 119
    Have done both...

    Swimming in a surfing wetsuit - not as flexible and makes your shoulders ache more and causes a quicker onset of fatigue than a tri wetsuit. Tri wetsuits are smoother and therefore cause less drag through the water. Tri wetsuits seem to be more buoyant - not sure why probably something to do with where the thickness is located on the differentwetsuits.

    Surfing in a tri wetsuit - the wax on the board will knacker it up after a while. To be avoided if possible.
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