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How To Efficiently Put Your Wetsuit On And Take It Off

  • By Triathlete.com
  • Published Sep 10, 2010
Having a strategy for getting your wetsuit on and off will help save you time and energy on race day. Photo: Nils Nilsen

With the inaugural TriRock Series Race set to take place in San Diego, Calif. in just a few days (Sept. 12), we thought we’d use the next few days to provide tips you’ll need when jumping into your first triathlon. This article provides tips on how to efficiently get in and out of your wetsuit.

Having a strategy for getting your wetsuit on and off will help save you time and energy on race day. Photo: Nils Nilsen

Advice from triathlon coach Kirk Nelson (Trikirkcoaching.com)

Getting it on:

- Apply anti-friction gel or cream to areas prone to chafing, especially the neck.

- Make sure your skin and the wetsuit are completely dry.

- Wear full-fingered gloves, which reduce the risk of tearing your wetsuit with your fingernails.

- Wear socks or plastic bags over your feet to keep the wetsuit from catching.

- Starting with the legs, pull wetsuit up completely until it is snug in the crotch.

- Pull the arms on, pulling the sleeves up until the wetsuit fits snugly in the armpits.

- Check for places where the suit may have bunched up or rolled.

Taking it off:

-Be aggressive. Being too cautious when removing the wetsuit will cause it to catch on your ankles and wrists, requiring extra time and hassle. If your wetsuits is always catching on your ankles and wrists, consider cutting one to three inches off the sleeves and ankles. (Warning: This will void your wetsuit warranty.)

- Upon arriving at your space in T1, use your hands to push your wetsuit down the legs toward the ankles as far as possible (do this a second time if necessary). Quickly pull first foot out completely, lifting your knee straight up very quickly. Take first foot (now free) and step on the wetsuit near your second foot to hold the suit in place on the ground. Take second foot out completely by lifting your knee straight up very quickly.

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