Technical Suits – Are They All in Your Head?

20 01 2014
Technical Racing Suits

Technical racing suits can provide an advantage in the water.

Technical racing swimsuits have seen their fair share of controversy over whether they are crossing the line into giving individuals an unfair advantage in the pool. However, as long as you choose a swimsuit that falls within the FINA guidelines, you can wear it in your competitions. The question remains, though, is the advantage all in your head or is there a true advantage to using these advanced racing suits for your competitions.

Contouring Features

One of the best advantages of the technical swimsuits is the contouring they perform with the body. Instead of simply covering your body, the materials in these suits are designed to compress certain areas of the body to create better hydrodynamics. This can lead t faster swim times without the need to change anything about the way you swim. While you still need to know how to swim properly, these swimsuits make your body better able to glide through the water unimpeded. The Speedo LZR Elite Recordbreaker Kneeskin and Jammer are great examples of this contouring and compression.

A More Streamlined Effect

Many of the technical swimsuits on the market, including the Arena Carbon Pro Mark 2, use other materials that tighten the weave on the fabrics from which swimwear is made. In this case, the additional fibers are made from lightweight carbon. This means it is more likely to repel the water, rather than absorb some of it and create more friction that can slow a swimmer down. However, it is important to make sure you choose a swimsuit that doesn’t violate FINA guidelines if you intend to wear it for competitions.

Is the Higher Cost Worth It?

One of the primary concerns over the technical racing suits is whether they are worth their high cost. The high cost can also give some swimmers an advantage over those who can’t afford to pay for them. If you can afford it, though, buying a technical swim suit for your competitions will ensure that you have the latest swimwear that will enhance your performance in the water.

Technical swimsuits, such as the Speedo LZR Elite and the Arena Carbon Pro Mark 2, can be a great advantage. It won’t make you a better swimmer, but it can improve your speeds in the water due to its construction. You will still need to master the basic swimming techniques. The goal is to make swimmers more hydrodynamic to help them move more easily through the water, improving performance.

If you are interested in technical racing suits, contact us for a full listing of FINA-approved competitive swimwear.





Official FINA 2010 List of Approved Swimsuits

16 10 2009

FINA has released it’s official list of swimsuits approved for 2010.  Most major swimsuit manufacturers are represented on the list including Nike, Arena, TYR and Speedo.  Here is that list in its entirety:

FINA 2010 List of Approved Swimsuits

Applicant/Manufacturer Type of Swimwear
Arena Italia S.p.A. X-Flat   classic men
Arena Italia S.p.A. X-Flat   pants-short men
Arena Italia S.p.A. X-Flat   classic women
Arena Italia S.p.A. Powerskin Version A classic men
Arena Italia S.p.A. Powerskin Version A pants-short men
Arena Italia S.p.A. Powerskin Version B pants-short men
Descente   OAR-0528M pants-short men
Descente   OAR-0522W full-knee women
Descente Shin_rev ARN-8509M classic men
Descente Shin_rev ARN-8504W classic women
Descente Aile bleue ARN-6009M classic men
Diana Submarine 201M pants-short men
Diana Submarine 213W full-knee women
Diana Submarine 243W full-knee women
Finis Inc. Hydrospeed 2 Bladeback classic women
Finis Inc. Hydrospeed 2 Brief classic men
Mizuno Corporation MX   pants-short men
Mizuno Corporation MX   full-knee women
Nike Hydra II – brief TCSS0096 classic men
Nike Hydra II – jammer TCSS0097 pants-short men
Nike Hydra – Jammer N76000 pants-short men
Nike Hydra N76002 classic men
Nike Swift II -Jammer TCSS0093 pants-short men
Nike Swift II – brief TCSS0092 classic men
Orvar/Aquazone USA R-1   pants-short men
Orvar/Aquazone USA R-1   classic women
Orvar/Aquazone USA R-1   full-knee women
Rocket Science Sports Rocket Light   classic women
Speedo AQUABLADE Record Breaker Kneeskin full-knee women
Speedo AQUABLADE Hydroshort pants-short men
Speedo Fastskin FS II Record Breaker Kneeskin full-knee women
Speedo Fastskin FS II Jammer pants-short men
Speedo FSPro Record Breaker classic women
Speedo Fastskin XT Record Breaker Kneeskin full-knee women
Speedo Fastskin XT Brief classic men
Speedo Fastskin XT Jammer pants-short men
Speedo Fastskin Record Breaker Kneeskin full-knee women
Speedo Fastskin Jammer pants-short men
Speedo LZR Racer Elite  Record Breaker classic women
Speedo LZR Racer Elite Record Breaker Kneeskin full-knee women
Speedo LZR Racer Elite Jammer pants-short men
Speedo LZR Pro Record Breaker classic women
Speedo LZR Pro Record Breaker Kneeskin full-knee women
Speedo LZR Pro Jammer pants-short men
Speedo LZR Comp Record Breaker  classic women
Speedo LZR Comp Record Breaker Kneeskin full-knee women
Speedo LZR Comp Jammer pants-short men
Tyr Sports Inc. Tracer Light Racer classic men
Tyr Sports Inc. Tracer Light Aeroback classic women
Tyr Sports Inc. Tracer Light Straight Racer classic men
Tyr Sports Inc. Tracer Light Racer C Series classic men
Tyr Sports Inc. Tracer Light Aeroback C Series classic women
Tyr Sports Inc. Tracer Light Aeroback  SII classic women
Tyr Sports Inc. Tracer Light Aeroback  SII C Series full women
Tyr Sports Inc. Tracer Light Straight Racer C Series classic men
Tyr Sports Inc. Tracer Light Openback C Series classic women
Tyr Sports Inc. Tracer Light Openback classic women
Tyr Sports Inc. Tracer Light Titan Racer classic men
Tyr Sports Inc. Tracer Light Titan Racer C Series classic men




USA Swimming Allowable Suit Reference List

6 10 2009

USA Swimming Rule 102.9, regarding suits allowed in USA swimming sanctioned events, went into effect on October 1st, 2009.  The following is a statement by USA Swimming outlining what suits are currently allowed to be used in competition.  These suits should not be considered “FINA approved” until FINA releases its own 2010 approved suit list.

USA Swimming statement released 10/5/2009:

The USA Swimming House of Delegates, consisting of 438 coach, official and athlete members, voted to implement new swimsuit requirements, beginning on October 1. While this earlier implementation date has created some challenges, it was put in place to both avoid interrupting our short course season and protect the integrity of our competitions in the summer of 2010. 

The new swimsuit requirements are very specific and technical in nature, but deal primarily with silhouette and material of the suits.

FINA will be the ultimate judge of which materials will be acceptable. However, in an effort to provide clearer guidance to its membership, USA Swimming asked the major suit manufacturers, in good faith, to indicate which of their suits meet the specified criteria. The list of those suits is below.

Please note, none of these suits should be considered “FINA approved” until FINA issues its list of 2010 suits.Once FINA publishes its list, some of the suits below may no longer be acceptable.

Reference List for Allowable Swimsuits

ARENA
ARENA X-FLAT
a) Woman full body short leg open back
b) Woman Normal Suit (Classic)
c) Man Jammer
d) Man Brief

ARENA POWERSKIN
a) Woman full body short leg open
b) Woman Normal Suit (Classic)
c) Man Jammer

ARENA POWERSKIN R-EVOLUTION
a) Woman full body short leg open back
b) Man Jammer

AgonSwim.com
The following styles from Agonswim.com in the fabrics Paper, Streamline, Lycra, MaxResist, PolyRidge, Speedline, Duramax, Knit Polyester, PBT and Mesh meet the requirements.

Male styles
Brief
Brief Euro
Jammer
Splice Jammer
Training suit
Training suit euro

Female styles
Freeback
Freeback Youth
Knee Length Proback
Proback
Sprintback
ThinStraps
Thin Straps Youth
ThinStraps 1X
Thin Straps 2X
U-Back
BikiniBack Top
BikiniBack Bottom

BlueSeventy
Will provide a list when it is available

Diana

The below Diana suit models have received FINA approval
Diana Submarine 201M pants-short men
Diana Submarine 213W full-knee Women 
Diana Submarine 243W full-knee women

Dolfin
All suits in the Dolfin LTF series

Finis
HydroSpeed 2 Models (nylon/lycra material):
o    Female Bladeback
o    Female Race John
o    Male Brief
o    Male Jammer

HydroSpeed Models (nylon/lycra material):
o    Female Race John
o    Male Brief
o    Male Jammer

AquaTuff Polyester Models (polyester material):
o    Female Skinback
o    Female Bladeback
o    Male Brief
o    Male Jammer

NIKE SWIM
Will provide a list of approved suits once finalized from FINA

RocketScience Sports
Part Number     Name                            

SW-000-FU-O     FU RACER – Open Back       Women’s
SW-000-FU-C     FU RACER – Closed Back     Women’s
SM-000-FU-H      FU RRACER – Hipster          Men’s
SM-000-FU-HW   FU RCARER – High W          Men’s
SWK-001-LIGHT   rocket Light K                  Women’s
SW-001-LIGHT     rocket Light                    Women’s
SM-001-LIGHT     rocket Light                     Men’s
SW-002-ORBIT     rocket ORBIT                  Women’s
SM-002-ORBIT     rocket ORBIT                   Men’s
SW-003-FLIGHT   rocket FLIGHT                 Women’s
SM-003-FLIGHT    rocket FLIGHT                 Men’s
SMB-002             rocket BREIF                   Men’s

TYR
Fusion Racer (Style#RFUS6) 2006 Male
Fusion Jammer (Style#SFUS6) 2006 Male
Fusion Aeroback (Style#AFUS6) 2006 Female
Fusion Aeroback Short John (Style#ASFU6) 2006 Female
Tracer Light Racer (Style#TLRA6) 2007 Male

Tracer Light Jammer (Style#TLJA6) 2007 Male
Tracer Light Aeroback (Style#TLAB6) 2007 Female
Tracer Light Aeroback Short John (Style#TLSJ6) 2007 Female

Speedo
Speedo believes the following championship suits meet the criteria listed by USA Swimming.

Speedo Fastskin FS Pro
Female Recordbreaker, Style #7190803
Female Kneeskin, Style #7190102
Male Jammer, Style #7050170

Speedo Fastskin FSII
Female Recordbreaker, Adult Style #7190142, Youth Style #7190141
Male Jammer, Adult Style #7050154, Youth Style #7050153
Male Brief, Adult Style #7055001

Speedo Aquablade
Female Recordbreaker, Adult Style #719040, Youth Style #719039
Male Jammer, Adult Style #705966, Youth Style #705965
Male Brief, Adult #705032, Youth Style #705031

Please note, this list is not all-inclusive. Until such time as FINA publishes its list, swimsuits meeting the below criteria, should also be considered acceptable.

1.Swimsuits for men may not extend above the navel or below the knee and for women may not cover the neck or extend past the shoulders or below the knee;

2.No zippers or other fastening devices are allowed except for a waist tie on a brief or jammer; and

3.Suits must be of textile material and must not be made of any rubberized type of material such as polyurethane or neoprene.








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