If you have set yourself the challenge of taking place in an Open Water Swimming event this summer, no doubt you will want to find out what gear you will need. It may be a little overwhelming, especially if you are new to the sport and just getting to grips with it. However there is no need to fear, we are teeming with the essentials at Vigour Events and are happy to point you in the right direction.
What is a man without his wetsuit? The wetsuit is the piece-de-resistance of open water swimming. It is essential, especially if it’s a new sensation dipping your toes in the water. Wetsuits are made of neoprene and allows a thin layer of water to sit between the material and the skin, which is insulated by the body to keep you warm. Your suit must fit correctly, it cannot be too large as this can cause resistance in the water and allow extra water to pass through (it is vital that as little as possible passes through the suit and is not replaced by cold water). It cannot be too small as this can cut off circulation and make for an unpleasant swim. The suit must be snug with the ability to move your arms with ease and you don’t feel restricted. You don’t want your wetsuit to hold you back at your first event, do you?
Swimsuits are mainly for the pool, but you must find a comfortable one that you can wear under your wetsuit. Again, it shouldn’t be too tight as this can cause rubbing and will be extremely unpleasant on a long distance swim. Invest in a good quality, long-lasting endurance swimsuit to last you throughout the season.
Having goggles is a must when it comes to open water swimming. You want to be able to see around and under the water so you know what is going on. There is a vast choice of swimming goggles to choose from. Take the time to try on different pairs of goggles – they won’t necessarily be the best because they are the most expensive, they have to suit you. Goggles should fit well, be comfortable and provide good vision. Depending on what type of conditions you will be swimming in, it may be worth investing in goggles that are suited to bright days or goggles that are suited to dull days.
Swim caps keep you warmer and save heat loss from the head. They are made from latex or silicone, of which the silicone versions can be expensive but thicker and more durable. Caps vary in size, but you may need to stretch it if you find that it is too tight. If the water is extremely cold, try wearing a neoprene hat under your swim cap to combat any headaches.
Silicon Ear Plugs
Earplugs are beneficial to anyone who suffers from ear infections. They keep the water out nicely.
Swim Socks and Gloves
Unfortunately Scotland is almost always cold, even in summer. Don’t let that stop you from getting into the water. The best way to protect your hands and feet against the water is to wear neoprene gloves and socks. If you don’t have the best circulation, I suggest that you protect yourself.
Be prepared and get the latest essentials from our online store. You wouldn’t want to be last in the race.
If you need any further advice please give us a call on 0333 5777946.