How Exactly Does a Wetsuit Work? Fit is Important


Have you ever questioned how a wetsuit operates? In a nutshell, a wetsuit traps a very thin layer of water against your body to keep you warm. A wetsuit needs to be extremely snug against the body in order to function effectively. Additionally, it will keep you warmer the thicker it is. Your body heat quickly warms the confined water, which then solidifies into an insulating coating. Wetsuits are made of a substance called neoprene, which also serves as an insulator. Numerous microscopic air bubbles found in neoprene work as insulators, retaining heat inside the wetsuit rather than letting it escape into the water.

There are several different styles of wetsuits. Some of them have whole bodies and occasionally have hoods. Shorts and short sleeves are featured on others. Many wetsuits feature thicker layers around the torso to maintain core temperature while having thinner layers on the extremities to allow for better mobility.
how does a wetsuit work2
The Function of a Wetsuit

You will stay warmer if you wear a wetsuit made of thicker neoprene (such as 5/4mm or 6/5/4mm, etc.). Although a little quantity of water may inevitably enter the suit, you don’t want much water to do so. This is why it’s critical that your wetsuit is snug, not baggy, and fits like a second skin. You’ll get wet if your wetsuit doesn’t fit properly, and you won’t be warm or comfortable because of it.

Fleece-lined wetsuits limit the quantity of water that comes into contact with your skin. Your body doesn’t have to work as hard to be warm when there is a fleece lining. The warmer you stay and the longer you can surf, kitesurf, etc., the less water there is against your skin. Nowadays, the majority of wetsuits on the market have fleece linings. The fleece is typically seen on the chest and/or back panels of low- to mid-priced clothing. A fleece lining is often present throughout most, if not all, of higher priced wetsuits (primarily cold water wetsuits).
how does a wetsuit work5
The Function of a Wetsuit
Who Was The Wetsuit’s Inventor?

Hugh Bradner (1915-2008), a physicist at the University of California, Berkeley, is credited with this brilliant invention most often in histories of surfing and diving. He came up with the concept in 1951 while working for the US Navy. The modern-style neoprene wetsuit was invented by Dr. Bradner, but neither neoprene nor the concept of an insulated suit you can wear to save your life in the water were his ideas. Neoprene was one of the synthetic materials created by Wallace Carothers, the inventor of nylon.

Harvey L. Williams of Hadlyme, Connecticut submitted a patent application (US Patent 2,582,811: Garment) for a “one-piece, step-in and slip-over-the-head” diving suit on January 31, 1947, four years before Bradner’s creation. Williams’ patent acknowledges that there were earlier suits as well.
how does a wetsuit work6
The Function of a Wetsuit

I’ve uncovered US Patent 1,706,097: Life-saving suit, which Thomas Edgar Aud of Herndon, Virginia submitted on February 23, 1927, to be the oldest instance of a waterproof diving suit. It was created as “a suit for life saving, swimming, and analogous purposes, which may be applied with great ease and speed and which will effectively seal the entrance opening against the intrusion of water, made of some suitable strong and durable water-proof material, such as soft vulcanised rubber or any suitable combination of rubber and fabric” rather than a neoprene wetsuit.

Hugh Bradner gets significant credit for realising that neoprene’s cellular structure makes it an excellent wetsuit material. He made the decision not to patent his invention, as many brilliant innovators do, mistakenly thinking that only a small number of people might wear wetsuits. How mistaken he was! Bradner’s idea, which was made popular by individuals like Jack O’Neill, who founded his renowned wetsuit manufacturing business in 1952, allowed millions of people to participate in cold-water sports like surfing, swimming, and diving all year long. Hugh Bradner’s prize is ultimately bigger, though, as his name will always be remembered as the creator of the wetsuit, despite the fact that many individuals became wealthy as a result of this brilliant concept.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *