Wetsuits and rash guards to protect you while you surf
Surf swimwear is specially designed to protect your skin from abrasions and injury as well as to boost your performance. Depending on your level of expertise and the conditions in which you surf, you might choose a simple set of long surf trunks or wetsuits that offer full body coverage.
Various articles of surf swimwear can be combined according to your preferences, giving you just the right amount of coverage and protection. For example, some surfers prefer a simple pair of board shorts, supplementing with rash guard shirts when needed. Others prefer full wetsuits, especially when surfing in colder waters, as they insulate the body extremely well while providing excellent guards against body rashes.
Articles of Surf Swimwear
A casual surfer doing some light boarding in warm, calm water won't usually wear much more than a pair of long board shorts. These knee-length swimsuits are standard apparel in the surf world and are also worn purely for style.
Wetsuits represent the opposite end of the spectrum. Full wetsuits cover the wearer from neck to ankle, and hoodies, swim goggles and flippers (or other types of foot protection) can be worn to achieve 100 percent body coverage. They are most often worn during cool weather or in cold water, as they are well-insulated and resist water extremely well.
Rash guards are usually worn when the weather is too hot for full wetsuits. Even long-sleeve rash guards are lighter and more breathable than wetsuits, though many surfers prefer short-sleeved rash guards which help keep them cooler. They feature so-called "flatlock" stitching, which eliminates excess hanging fabric from the seams for a snug but comfortable fit. Rash guards are not limited to use during surfing; body surfers, wakeboarders, windsurfers, kayakers and even swimmers also wear them.
Materials Used in Surf Swimwear
Spandex, nylon and polyester are the staple materials of surf swimwear. These materials do not absorb much water, and therefore remain lighter during use. Because they are relatively lightweight given their thickness and insulation, they also help you retain body heat while performing at your peak. Their proponents claim that they also behave much like the outer skins of water-dwelling mammals, repelling water while remaining relatively dry.