What do divers wear under their wetsuits? Wouldn’t diving with more than two layers of clothing be uncomfortable and restrictive? These are questions most first-time users of wetsuits struggle to find answers to. Although different opinions on this matter have been provided by various people, the most important thing to note is that there is no real straightforward answer to what to wear under your wetsuit. It is all about preference. So whether you are planning on wearing 5mm wetsuits for mens with or without an undergarment, it all depends on you.
Origin Of Wetsuits
Wetsuit, invented in the early 1950s by Hugh Bradner- a physicist at the University of California, Berkeley, is worn by those intending to spend longer time inside water or those into water activities or sports. The suit is worn to offer thermal protection, buoyancy, exposure from ultraviolet rays, and bites from marine organisms while in the water. Examples of those that use the wetsuit include; divers, surfers, canoeists, and windsurfers.
How Does A Wetsuit Work
A wetsuit keeps your body warm through a simple technique. The technique is such that, when in water, the suit allows a thin layer of water to pass through it. This layer of water is then heated up by the warmth of your body. You should keep in mind that for this technique to work perfectly, your wetsuit must be well fitted to your body as a glove is to the hands. Your wetsuit shouldn’t be too tight as well. Extremely tight wetsuits may hinder blood flow to parts of your body.
Also, a wetsuit keeps your body warm because of the neoprene material used in making it. The neoprene has insulation properties that make the thin layer of water between your body and the suit heat up as fast as possible.
You must understand that wetsuits are designed to make your body feel warm and not to prevent your body from getting wet when in water. Suppose you want a suit that prevents wetness, then you should opt for a dry suit.
When Should You Wear A Wetsuit
There are several reasons, and activities wet wetsuits are used for. The most common are activities like diving, surfing, wild swimming, and snorkeling. The need to put on a wetsuit when performing most of these water activities is due to its ability to keep you warm while losing heat in the water. The human body is known to lose heat 25 times faster in water than when out of water. However, there are variations in these rates in different individuals. As such, the rate at which people feel cold differs.
If you are the type that feels extremely cold while in water, you might want to consider putting on a wetsuit before involving yourself in any water activity.
What To Wear Under A Wetsuit?
There are many materials you can wear under a wetsuit to feel comfortable in it. You can decide to put on leggings, a bikini, a speedo style suit, or board shorts. If you’re someone that feels more comfortable wearing nothing under a wetsuit, you are also good to go. It’s all about individual preference. Some expert divers have even noted that wearing a wetsuit alone without any clothing materials being worn underneath allows it to perform its functions optimally— keeping your body warm underwater.
In case you are a lady involved in diving or any other water sports, you might want to consider putting on a swimsuit, rash undershot, or speedo style suit underneath your wetsuit. This is for easy transitioning from water to the outside. You wouldn’t want to feel embarrassed when there is an urgent need to change your wetsuit.
Things To Consider When Selecting A Wetsuit
Zipper: A crucial part of a wetsuit is the zipper. Selecting a wetsuit with a zipper that makes you get in and out of the suit easily is best. Some prefer zippers located at the front instead of the back. The reason is that it offers easy flexibility of the back and easy accessibility in case of emergency.
Thickness: How thick your suit should be is dependent on the type of water you are planning to swim in. If you frequently dive in cold water, you should consider a thick suit ahead of the standard one.
Regardless of whatever water activity you plan on using your wetsuit for, ensure you observe all safety precautions related to the use. This is to avoid getting hurt in the process of using it.