How to find a wetsuit that fits
1. Don’t struggle to put your wetsuit on
2. Looking good is not the same as a good wetsuit fit
3. Always follow the size chart
4. Try a range of brands
5. Try before you buy
Put the wetsuit on, walk around for a while and make sure you feel comfortable. If you are a little clammy, don’t be afraid to jump about and wave your arms so the suit can settle into its natural resting position. If you are uncomfortable in a shop, it won’t be much better in the water and two-hour paddle fest in the sea will be an unpleasant ordeal. Head over to our dealer page by clicking here.
Look for the signs of an incorrect fit. A super stretchy suit may feel like it fits ok although if its too small, the seams will become stressed and the longevity of your wetsuit will be significantly reduced. Signs of the suit being too small are – riding up on your arms and legs. If the front of the suit isn’t long enough, it will pull on the collar and the neckline, this means water flushing when you duck dive, never nice.
Signs of the suit being too large are – bunching at the wrist and ankles, knee pad placement too low. Excess material behind knees, armpits, and the back of the neck will cause rubs and be very noticeable when paddling.
Stefan goes to the gym, is an active surfer and although he is of average size, he has a big chest and arms.
When you run his stats through the size guide, we can determine that his height of 178cm could put him in a Medium Large or Large.
His weight at 86Kg puts him into a Large and just into an XL.
Chest size of 104cm puts him perfectly into a size Large.
Waist size 84cm is closer to Medium.
Based on Stefan’s height and waist sizes alone, you could put him into a size Medium Large although, with his big chest, and muscle weight it may mean that the wetsuit may be a bit tight. He may not have a problem with the fit (as the length of the suit is sufficient), the material would be stretched around his chest and he may find that the seams start to fail, leak or even come apart quite quickly.
The COMP is one of our best selling suits so it seemed like an obvious choice. The reason COMP and COMP X are so popular is mostly down to the panel cut mixed with an abundance of stretch that allows the wetsuit to hug every curve of the body and fit like a second skin.
Even when you really examine the images of all three suits, it is hard to see any real difference between the Small up to the XL. The legs and wrists seem to be of equal length and the knee pads are in the correct place and the necklines look equal. The first impression is that they all fit. However, if you inspect the images a little closer you may notice that the colour of the size Small suit is lighter in colour. This is because the neoprene is under stretch and the lycra inside the suit is reflecting the camera flash.
In the XL suit, you can see a little bit of bunching under his left arm, this is because he isn’t tall enough for the panel length of this suit. This extra material would more than likely start to rub under his armpits and cause discomfort while paddling.
We were correct, Stefan is a Size Large!
This is a 3/2 summer suit that is so stretchy that Stefan could almost get away with a child version. If we were to run the same test with a 6mm hooded winter suit the results may be different and he probably couldn’t squeeze into a size Small. It does get you to thinking, “am I wearing the right size suit?”
We challenge you to measure yourself and see where you fit in the size guide?