You’ve registered for an Epic Races triathlon… congratulations! At some point, as you train for the big day, you’ll undoubtedly wonder about wetsuits. Are they required? Should you wear one? What does a wetsuit do, exactly? Are there any rules regarding wetsuits? These are great questions, and this is why we’ve put together this page. Use it as a reference to guide you through the waters of wetsuit wear, whether you’re preparing for your first-ever tri or your 50th.
What is a Wetsuit?
Most commonly constructed from neoprene, a wetsuit covers your body when swimming in an open-water environment. Worn over your swimsuit, this outer layer provides insulation against the cold of the water. Due to the microscopic bubbles in the material, wetsuits also provide you with additional buoyancy as you swim. The first-ever triathlon wetsuit, made by Aquaman, made its debut in France in 1984.
The two most common types of wetsuits are full (fully covering your arms and legs) and sleeveless (covering your legs).
Do I Need to Wear a Wetsuit?
Absolutely not! Participants in Epic Races wear bathing suits, tri suits, bathing suits with bike shorts over them, etc. We do follow USA Triathlon (USAT) rules regarding the use of wetsuits, so be sure you know them. See below.
USAT Regulations Regarding Wetsuit Wear
- USAT rules state that competitors may wear wetsuits if the water temperature is 78 degrees or lower.
- USAT rules also state that if the water temperature is between 78.1 degrees and 83.9 degrees, competitors may wear wetsuits but will not be eligible for awards.
- If the water temperature is 84 degrees or above, participants may not wear wetsuits.
Expected water temperatures will be posted beginning one week before each event.
Wondering whether a wetsuit will improve your swim? Want a wetsuit for your tri but not ready to invest in a purchase? Rent one from our friends at WetsuitRental.com! Through their all-inclusive rental program, you’ll receive your wetsuit approximately two weeks before your race. Their $65 rental fee includes shipping as well as a pre-paid label to return your suit. Need your wetsuit earlier? For $15 per week, you can get your wetsuit early… or keep it later. Once your rental period is over, WetsuitRental.com will give you a $50 credit toward purchasing your rented wetsuit or toward the purchase of a new wetsuit from their sibling site, JustWetsuits.com.
Save on your WetsuitRental.com rental with one of these two code options, available only to our Epic participants:
- EPIC5: receive $5 off your wetsuit rental fee
- EPICWEEK: receive a free week of wetsuit rental
Ready to own your own wetsuit? We have two options for our participants:
- Receive 30% off your purchase of an Aquaman wetsuit. Please email Epic Races at firstname.lastname@example.org to receive your discount code.
- Receive 15% off your purchase of a wetsuit from Just Wetsuits. Use discount code EPIC15% for any purchases on Just Wetsuits.