An Introduction to Drysuits

We all know that water sports such as sailing aren’t just for summer, as long as the water hasn’t frozen over you’re good to get going; not to mention, the wind tends to blow a bit more during the autumnal and winter seasons, which you won’t want to miss out on!

When suited and booted correctly, water sports can be enjoyed in an array of water temperatures, creating a more chilled out experience. If you’re looking to buy a drysuit online, here at Wetsuit Centre we supply a variety of essential water sports equipment, including our selection of sailing drysuits.

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What is a Drysuit?

Drysuits can be used for various water sports, such as sailing, kayaking, diving and water skiing. They are very useful tools that are designed to be fully waterproof, breathable and provide full protection from the elements.

Drysuits will include neck and wrist seals with integrated booties or ‘socks’, which prevent water from penetrating the suit, allowing you to stay warm, dry and comfortable.

Drysuits usually involve a base layer to help wick water from the skin when necessary, these will also help insulate your body. For those who love the water in the winter, a drysuit is the ultimate piece of cold water equipment.

How do Drysuits Work?

Drysuits work by keeping water out; they enclose the body in a 100% watertight layer. The suits are usually made from synthetic rubber or neoprene, with a robust exterior shell.

Some drysuits can be made with breathable material to prevent moisture from internally building up. The rubber seals, otherwise known as gaskets, prevent water from entering the suit. These are situated on the neck and wrists which are made of inner and outer seals.

The rubber seals and zips will need to be well maintained to ensure the drysuit is effective. The zips will need to be frequently waxed, and the rubber seals will need to be regularly conditioned. If the drysuit begins to leak, it should not be used until repaired.

A person white water rafting in a drysuit

Drysuit Insulation

A drysuit is predominantly designed to keep the wearer dry. If you purchase a drysuit that does not include an under fleece or undersuit, you will need to ensure that you wear a base and mid-layer. The layers will depend on the outside temperature.

Base Layers

The base layer will be the first stage of managing moisture and thermal insulation. It is the most important layer when ensuring that you are kept warm and dry.

You should look to use a close-fitting, comfortable and breathable fabric that will draw moisture away from the body, such as wicking fabrics like:

• Polyester
• Polypropylene
• Spandex
• Nylon
• Bamboo

Mid Layers

The mid-layer should be a warm fleece layer that offers insulation. A lightweight fleece is often an appropriate option. Once you’ve sorted out your torso, it’s also important to consider if your legs will suffer from the cold.

What Water Sports Can a Drysuit be Used For?

Originally, drysuits were used to protect SCUBA divers from cold water, since then they have evolved to incorporate other activities such as:

• Windsurfing
• Kitesurfing
• Kayaking
• Wake-boarding
• Water skiing
• Sailing
• Paddleboarding
• Surfing
• Diving

We hope this article has provided an insightful introduction to drysuits! If you have any further questions you can contact a member of our team here at Wetsuit Centre, where we will be happy to help!