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Wetsuit or no wetsuit?

Hi, I wonder if someone can help a newbie with a question?

I'm entred into the Hever Castle tri this weekend (only my second tri) and have been informed that the use of a wetsuit is optional.

What do people think? My naive thinking would be that the swim would be quicker in a wetsuit, but this is outweighed by the fact that transition would be a lot quicker without one. Especially as the swim is only 800m. Therefore I'm thinking without wetsuit.

Any thoughts would be much appreciated!!


  • I don't think there's been a definitive test as to whether your swim+T1 time is quicker with, or without a wetsuit, so I wouldn't make the choice based upon time.

    However, I would make it based upon comfort. I know it's only late September, but the water for any open water swim will be cold, that's why this weekend is the last weekend that some lakes allow swimming before they shutdown for the winter. I'd keep an eye on the organisers website, because I'm sure that at some point hthey will have to take a temperture reading of the lake, and make a statement as to whether wetsuits are optional or compulsary. As they will obviously be choosing between compulsary / optional, rather than optional / banned, it means that the water is on the lower limits of being tolerable without a wetsuit, so cold.

    Only plus point that I can see in doing this swim without a wetsuit, is you'll be ale to do the bike leg perched on the very nose of the saddle, as the boys will have popped back up into your bidy to find some warmth. I'd also be wary of any photos, as you may be called in front of the judges for gender verification.
  • think i'd be going no wetsuit. much as the buoyancy is a benefit i personally don't like the shoulder restriction the wetsuit gives (may be my crappy wetsuit). in fact, you should go the whole budgie-smuggling hog, as an end-of-season finale.

    personal taste i guess, but my stroke and swim feels better and more natural when not in a wetsuit.
  • jibby26jibby26 Posts: 261
    Based on my swim last week definately a wetsuit swim, water felt pretty cold on exposed hands & feet. The time lost hyperventilating & unable to swim not wearing a wetsuit definately outweighs any performance loss from wearing a wetsuit this time of year IMO.
  • Wetsuit, I went a couple of times this week, a bit too fresh for my liking.
  • aspasp Posts: 1
    Hi there,

    Wetsuit/no-wetsuit. Depends how strong a swimmer you are.

    I'm not a strong swimmer and at Age Group European Championships it was NO wetsuit since water temp was too high. I had a nightmare swim - I missed the buoyancy. Took about 10 mins longer for 1500m.

    For me no contest, if you have the option Wetsuit every time. Just like your training.
  • Thanks for all the comments, they're very useful.

    Think I'm going to take the advice, take the Borat Mankini out the kit bag and put the wetsuit back in!!

    Thanks again.
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