Swim Equipment Tips
Having the right equipment when swimming open water is so important; I am regularly giving tips to swimmers on what gear they should be using. At the end of the day it’s all about comfort and personal choice. If you are racing don’t save any new bit of kit for race day, test it in training first. If you are a recreational swimmer having good equipment can still make the difference between a good swim experience and a great one. No you don’t need to spend a fortune on gear. Here are my top tips:
Seeing where you’re going is so important. All goggles have anti fog film to start … all that anti fog film in your new goggles … well it breaks down in UV/Chlorine/Saltwater) sometimes after just a few swims . Get some anti fog spray such as; http://www.wiggle.co.uk/aqua-sphere-antifog-solution-30cc/ It works.
I use Many pairs of goggles, my favourite is the Kayenne Small Fit http://www.aquasphereswim.com/uk/index.php/products/eye-protection/adults Why? They are comfortable and don’t leak – always important. Also they are very easy to adjust both to tighten and to loosen. I don’t know about you but depending on the situation I might adjust the tension and some goggles can be a pain to adjust. Ever broken the strap trying to tension the goggle? I have. I keep a bag of goggles for clients to try (or when they forget their own) and the Kayenne are the pair 90% will select. We all have different shaped faces, don’t expect what works for someone else will work for you. Try on many pairs of goggles. If it’s comfortable that’s a good sign.
Favourite swimming wetsuit, handsdown the blueseventy Helix www.blueseventy.com Why? Two reasons the top down zip has reduced all chaffing around my neck because there is no fat zip pressing and rubbing on the back of my neck. And most important shoulder flexibility – it’s awesome, the feeling of freedom around the shoulders means no additional resistance, I can simply swim. In the interests of full disclosure I have a working relationship with Blueseventy however I asked them for the Helix I am not obligated to write about it or use it. If you think you can do better on comfort and performance good luck.
Swim cap … these days they are generally swim made of latex or silicone. A swim cap helps keep your hair out of the way (not that I have that problem), it reduces drag and it helps with heat retention. I would recommend silicone every time; They’re way more comfortable, easy to put on and last longer.
Last tip – now that you have some good equipment look after it. Rinse goggles, swim suits, wetsuits and cap out after each swim. Let them drip dry out of the sun. Keep your goggles in the case you bought them in – they’re no good to you if the lenses are scratched.
If you are going to go swimming outdoors you want to be comfortable and concentrate on what you are there to do… swim, not worry about your kit. If you have your own top equipment pointers I’d love to hear them.