Wetsuits at waterparks and swimming pools

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surfydude
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Wetsuits at waterparks and swimming pools

Post by surfydude » Tue Jun 05, 2018 1:34 pm

Years ago, I took my first wetsuit to the water for the first time - at a waterpark! I never went to a waterpark before (and never could, because swimming always made me freeze). I was excited, but worried about how people would react, so I suited up in my Ripcurl Classic long sleeve springsuit, and put boardshorts over it. The bottom half of the suit was not visible, so I looked like a surfer in a rash shirt and shorts. But the reality was, no-one cared! Everyone was there to have fun! Staff didn't mind because the back zip was enclosed.

The rides and slides at this waterpark were huge and scary, especially at the top, but exhilarating once you get over it! I wasn't a fan of near-freefall but loved the sloshy twists and turns that followed. Definitely an experience to try, and wetsuits only made it better! I looked great, stayed warm (no wind chill), both in long wait lines and while riding in the water. And the best part - you get to walk around in a wetsuit all day without feeling out of place!

surfydude
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Re: Wetsuits at waterparks and swimming pools

Post by surfydude » Tue Jun 05, 2018 1:44 pm

A year or two later, I got another wetsuit and took it to an even bigger waterpark. This time I had an O'Neill Hammer short sleeve springsuit (one of my favourites, but became too small). The shoulders had a nice sky blue trim to go with my boardshorts (I really envied this surfer look at the time). I had the suit on almost all day without worry. The only attention I got was positive. While lining up for a ride, one guy complimented how good I looked! We had a nice chat, and went on a few different rides together. What a blast! He didn't know I had a wetsuit on under my shorts until I told him (and he only had shorts).

At this waterpark, there was one very interesting attraction - the Flowrider. It was essentially a ramp with a strong sheet of water flowing upwards, where people can surf or bodyboard against the current. Experienced riders could do move around and do all sorts of tricks, even use it like a trampoline! But it was hard to manoeuvre and one small mistake will wipe you out, sending you flying in the air. The water was that strong! Because most people (including me) were new, wipe outs were frequent and each turn was short. I ended up with lightly bruised elbows after landing several times on rubber mats. A full suit would be a good idea.

Most of the rides were a lot less intense, but still fun and exciting. There were a range of speeds, and I actually liked the slow and medium ones more. They were sufficiently fast and the bends kept you guessing what was coming. There were a few really crazy slides which I didn't go on, like very steep high speed slides and loop-the-loops, even though a wetsuit would've softened the landing. One of them didn't look crazy at ground level, but boy, once you get up the top and look down, it was near vertical! Scary!

Has anyone else tried wetsuits at waterparks or swimming pools, and have stories and experiences to share?

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Wetsuitlad98
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Location: Northern Ireland

Re: Wetsuits at waterparks and swimming pools

Post by Wetsuitlad98 » Wed Jun 06, 2018 10:15 am

I have been curious about this for a while. I havent worn a wetsuit in swimming centres for a while, it was mainly for when I did open water swimming ect. I heard the chlorine is bad for your wetsuit too if you don't wash it off fast? But other than that Im curious about wearing my full wetsuit next time I go to my local swimming centre haha. Just wish more guys had the same idea :P

surfydude
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Location: Brisbane, Australia

Re: Wetsuits at waterparks and swimming pools

Post by surfydude » Wed Jun 06, 2018 3:49 pm

I don't see many wetsuits at waterparks or pools either, hence my curiosity. At the waterparks, one guy had a short john suit with a tshirt over it, and a few had wetsuit tops. I used to swim regularly at local swimming pools, but only lifeguards seem to wear wetsuits if they're in the water.

I've almost always suited up in a pool, even a heated one. Usually it's warm enough for a surf spring suit, but I'll wear a full suit if a little cold (I get cold easily). I'm curious if anyone else has used a wetsuit in a pool, and how did others react. Especially when I hear continental European pools don't like shorts. I find people might look, but usually say nothing.

Chlorine isn't good for wetsuits, but is largely okay if you rinse the suit immediately after, and don't use it in the pool a lot. Surf suits generally stand up pretty well. The lining on both sides might fade a bit, but otherwise keeps the neoprene in shape, unlike my tri wetsuit, which started to split at the ankles. Liquid taping might be the other concern, as mine cracked in stretchy places, even though the seams remained intact. Not sure if it was me rinsing the suit after I got home instead of straight away, or simply because of age. However, I'd rather suit up and stay warm instead of freezing!

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Wetsuitlad98
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Location: Northern Ireland

Re: Wetsuits at waterparks and swimming pools

Post by Wetsuitlad98 » Wed Jun 06, 2018 5:30 pm

True to be fair, if I could get away with wearing a wetsuit every time I got into the pool I would :D :D. I haven't seen much lifeguards in wetsuits where im from but I'll have to ask, gives me another reason to become one lol.

surfydude
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Re: Wetsuits at waterparks and swimming pools

Post by surfydude » Thu Jun 07, 2018 2:37 pm

Actually, I only saw lifeguards in wetsuits at just one pool (and only during the busy times) so it mightn't be common! But hey, if you can suit up, why not?

If you want more excuses, they keep sunburn away (in an outdoor pool), prevent cramps, make you float (either swimming or just lying in the water), and some can make you swim faster. For me, my tri wetsuit was about 7 seconds faster per 100m thanks to the extra floatation and slippery surface (compared to my surf suits). Even my surf suits are much faster and sleeker than baggy boardshorts.

Chlorine resistant suits do exist, but there's not many of them - Aquasphere Aquaskins, DeSoto 2-piece suits and I think the Speedo Thinswims are a few. Or maybe get a cheap suit that you don't mind replacing months later.

Binary
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Re: Wetsuits at waterparks and swimming pools

Post by Binary » Thu Jun 07, 2018 3:10 pm

Went to a waterpark once, I have seen several people wearing wetsuits, both men and women. Majority is usually either one piece swimsuit for the women and board shorts for the men. Most women don't do bikinis in case the fast rides unhinch their garments, and males just are too embarrassed to wear speedos. Which disappointed me cause I was literally the only guy there in a pair of speedos! All day at the water park I did not see anyone else.

The ride attendants wore rashes/jackets and shorts. I guess it's their uniform. Only one attendant was wearing a wetsuit underneath her uniform, so not much luck there.

I'll probably dare myself to wear a wetsuit next time I go to the water park. Not cheap though for sure. The last time I went someone managed to nab discount tickets from their company promotions lol

surfydude
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Re: Wetsuits at waterparks and swimming pools

Post by surfydude » Fri Jun 08, 2018 2:33 pm

Speedos seem rare outside of serious swimming (in the English-speaking world). I only saw one guy in them during one waterpark visit. Most people just wear regular swimwear, some had rash shirts too.

I wonder if anyone has dared to wear a full wetsuit to a waterpark, because I felt it was too much!

surfydude
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Joined: Sun May 13, 2018 7:02 am
Location: Brisbane, Australia

Re: Wetsuits at waterparks and swimming pools

Post by surfydude » Thu Jun 21, 2018 2:34 pm

More recently, I tried a wetsuit in a hotel spa (with really strong jets). The spa was toasty warm, so wetsuit wasn't necessary, but it was the only swimming kit I had on me. It was fun floating around in a pool of bubbles and being massaged by jets (you can still feel through the neoprene).

Wasn't long before I was joined by a dude in nothing but black speedos :shock:

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