The importance of a good wetsuit (1)
Don´t save money on a wetsuit, for it is of most significant importance for you...
Picture:A proper wetsuit might just be your best friend!!!
Credits to: Johannes Hohls
Depending on where you are, a wetsuit is one of the first accessories you'll buy to learn how to surf. I say it depends on where you are, because you may not even need one! The wetsuit is a precious help when it comes time to get in the water, surf, swim or dive, it doesn't matter. There are many factors to consider when it comes time to purchase one. You have to consider the air temperature, the water temperature, the wind in your area, your activity in the water and also your ability to resist the cold. Because deep down what matters is being warm and happy inside the suit. In general, the suits are made of neoprene and have different thicknesses for different needs. Neoprene is made of small closed cells that are filled with air which provide insulation against cold water by trapping heat in. The thicker the suit's neoprene, the warmer the suit will be because it has more heat-trapping insulation.
Now, for the nerd inside you, how does the wetsuit work? The wetsuit is usually made of Neoprene and its function is to maintain a constant body temperature and protect from the elements. Even you know right? As it was not meant to leave you completely dry, the water that ends up entering the suit creates a thin layer between the suit and your skin. Your body heats up this film of water and so you keep your body warm. Water molecules conduct energy in the form of heat about 40x faster than air molecules. For example, being on the street with 18º of atmospheric temperature is not the same as being in the water at 18º.
The wetsuit thickness is measured in millimeters, represented with one, two or three numbers, separated by a slash ( / ). The first number represents the thickness of the suit in your torso, and the second number represents the thickness of the suit in your legs and arms.
If it shows just one number it indicates that the wetsuit has only one thickness for the whole body.
If the suit shows three numbers, the first is the thickness on the torso, the second represents the arms and the third number the legs. The idea here is that the torso, wich is a less mobile area and has the most important body functions can keep its core body heat. The thinner neoprene is left for arms and legs, wich are in constant motion, and therefore dont have the necessity of a constant temperature.
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In the next chapter we will talk about how to choose the proper wetsuit, the sign to avoid and the ones to watch and simple hacks regarding wetsuits...
Stay tunned for some tubular knowledge.