Most surfers love to go on the water without neoprene, but unfortunately this is not possible at many spots in Europe because the water is just too cold. So if you don't fly thousands of kilometers away on your surfing holiday, you have to look for a suitable neoprene. Fortunately, the surf suits have been continuously improved in recent years, so that today they are available in extremely light form, they are very supple to the body and can flexibly follow every movement, even if they are full suits . The suits are now perceived as less distracting than was previously the case.
But what factors need to be considered when choosing the right neoprene FullSuit? Which is the surf suit that suits you best? To find out, you can either go to a shop and have a look at the different suits and try them on, or you can read about them first and then, based on this, guess your decision or at least get a first impression.
With the neoprene full suit there are more important things than the price
A pretty important point when buying a wetsuit is not just paying attention to the price. Even if a cheap suit might look chic, it is much more important that it fits perfectly. A lot has happened in the development of wetsuits, especially in recent years. Modern suits no longer have much in common with the first uncomfortable models. Due to this development, there is a large variety of manufacturers, materials, models and features today. It will be difficult to keep an overview and it is good to have a precise plan of how to go about finding the right suit.
Warmth and flexibility characterize a good Neo
Wetsuits are suitable for a whole range of water sports enthusiasts, such as divers, windsurfers, kiters, wakeboarders, rafters, but also for swimmers and triathletes. The most important thing about neoprene is certainly its warming effect, but also its flexibility is a decisive factor, because if the freedom of movement is restricted and it becomes exhausting, the sport is much less or maybe even no more fun.
When do I need my own suit?
The requirements for a suit certainly differ depending on the sport, but there are still a number of factors that are generally important for choosing the right suit. The answer to the following questions shows whether you need your own suit at all: How long do I go surfing and will I do it more often? How warm is the water at my vacation spot?
Usually you can rent a Neo wherever water sports are practiced. This usually costs around 10 to 15 euros a day. A suit for the beginner, which is of high quality, can be obtained from around 200 euros. That means that your own suit has already paid off after a vacation of 3 weeks. In addition: if you take good care of your suit, you can use it for a good 5 years.
What are the conditions at my spot?
When choosing the right suit, it is also important what the conditions are at the respective water sports spot. In addition to the water temperature, this also includes the wind strength, the sun exposure and the personal feeling of cold. Depending on personal feelings, the limit, whether a Neo is used or not, is at a water temperature of 22 to 24 degrees. But even if the water is warm, it is advisable to wear a suit. The body always cools down in the water. As long as you are in action, you may not notice that it is getting too cold or only when you are already cool. One thing is certain, without a suit you always run the risk of cooling off. In addition, a suit not only protects against the cold, but also against sunburn and injuries. Especially for beginners, protection from the Neo is highly recommended, because it reduces bruises and abrasions on the skin.
The size of the suit
The most common mistake when buying a wetsuit is that the wrong size is chosen. Most people choose a suit that is too big without advice. This is quite normal, because those who have never worn a neo full suit do not know how tight they really have to be and that they will widen after a few times. A Neo should always be so tight when you buy it that you can hardly close it. With a suit that is too big, you can hardly do anything afterwards, because if too much water can penetrate, it becomes unnecessarily heavy at first and blocks every movement, and secondly, it no longer serves its purpose of warming. A wetsuit warms by holding a thin layer of water around the body that is warmed by body temperature. To do this, the water must not flow out of the suit every time and flow in again when you go into the water.
How do I find the right size?
Tables from the manufacturers provide an approximate orientation for the correct size. In addition, the suits differ in elasticity, depending on the material and manufacturer. For these reasons, the size charts are not really reliable and can only provide an approximate guide. The actual size of a neo will be similar to that of normal clothing, but it can also vary. In addition, the sizes usually take into account other information than that of normal clothing, such as a T that appears in size. This means that the suit is made for thin people. Sizes with an S in their name, on the other hand, are more suitable for wider people.
How do I get in best, in the tight suit?
A surf suit that really fits is difficult to put on. Fortunately, there are some helpful tips on how best to do it. The best strategy to slip into a Neo is to pull on one leg while sitting, in the best case up to the thigh. Make sure that the knee pad is properly seated. Then you can slip into the second leg. It is important to always handle the material carefully and not to pull it violently so that the suit is not damaged. Once the legs are in, the neoprene FullSuit can be pulled over the hips until it sits smoothly on the legs and without wrinkles. Then he is rolled up to under the armpits. Now you can slip into your sleeve with your left arm and then with your right.
What to look for when trying on
Anyone who buys a Neo in stores has the advantage that a seller can be brought in for advice who is particularly familiar with the sizes. But there is nothing wrong with ordering a suit online if you pay attention to a few things and definitely have a selection sent to you. The following things should be considered when trying on:
- it should be difficult to put the Neo on, because only then will it be tight enough
- There must be no free spaces between the skin and the suit
- There must be no wrinkles, not even in the crotch or at the back of the knee
- There should only be a small crease under the armpits, but it should not be visible when the arms are outstretched
- The freedom of movement of the arms and legs should be given to the full extent
- You should still be able to stretch your arms up while lifting your armpits
Shorty, FullSuit, Steamer and the thick thing
Surf suits are available in different versions, which are also suitable for different uses. If the suit is worn in very warm waters, a shorty with short arms and legs is sufficient. Who knows that he wants to go surfing in colder waters, but should definitely get a full suit or steamer with long arms and legs. But not only the cut is important, but also the thickness of the material. Most suits have two thicknesses because they are often different on the body and arms and legs. The information is in millimeters and mostly around the body one millimeter higher than on the arms and legs. The advantage of this strategy is that the upper body can be kept warm better and the arms and legs have more freedom of movement.
Thickness is not the same thickness and seam is not the same as seam
The question of what thickness is recommended at which water temperature also depends somewhat on the quality of the suit. If you are freezing in an entry-level model, you can sweat in a premium model with the same thickness and the same water temperature. Accurate forecasts are almost impossible because the sensation of warmth varies greatly from person to person and can also be related to the length of time you wear it. Experience shows that the longer the session lasts, the colder it gets.
Another important point in the surf suits is the seams. Cheap models are mostly only sewn, while more expensive ones are often sealed with an inner tape. This ensures that the seams remain flexible, but are still particularly waterproof.
Do I need a zipper?
Another question is about the zipper. Again, this depends on the preferred use of the suit. What is certain is that suits without a zipper or with a front zip have a decisive advantage over the back zip: they let less water into the suit and therefore retain the heat better. If you don't care, for example because you only go surfing in summer, you can also do a normal backzip.
Entry-level models, medium quality and premium suits
To get a better overview, the suits can be divided into three quality and price categories. The cheapest suits, which are between 60 and 150 euros, are definitely suitable for short trips and destinations in the sun with warm water. Suits in the middle price segment cost between 150 and 250 euros and usually have sealed seams, flexible materials and a front zip. You can keep warm pretty well even at water temperatures around 17 degrees. Premium suits are available at prices between 250 and 400 euros. They have the best material, which is very stretchy and well processed and are very versatile. A good suit with a normal material thickness of 2/3 mm can still be sufficient even in cooler water in spring and autumn. If you are thinking about buying a summer suit and one for the colder days, you should consider whether a more expensive suit could be suitable for both.
Proper care of the neo
Anyone who has bought a Neo should know one thing at the very beginning: it must never be washed in the washing machine. In order to clean it so that it does not stink, there are special detergents for surf suits . Here the Neo simply has to soak for a few minutes, then dry and it is fresh again.
Also when it comes to drying, you should know that a Neo should never dry in the sun so that the material does not become porous. Also, it shouldn't be kinked while drying. It is best to place it on a wide surface or hang it on a hanger in the shade.
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