If you’re like me, finding the correct racing togs for your body shape can be a bit of a challenge sometimes. One of my main strokes is breaststroke. Being a breaststroker, you’d expect that I have strong thighs. But, it’s actually quite the opposite with me. I have had and still have skinny legs my whole life. This makes buying racing suits a challenge. Normally, they fit perfectly everywhere, except for my legs, where they are just too big.
For the European Masters in London, I had purchased an Arena suit, which I will review in a different post later on. This suit was now too big for me to use at the World Masters as I lost a bit of weight. So, I decided to upgrade to a new suit. I decided to buy a size lower than I did last year, hoping that it would fit me. I went with the Arena Powerskin Carbon Flex suit. From reading reviews, it was advised that this was the best suit for breaststroke and I.M. swimmers.
When the suit arrived, I tried it on. After ten minutes of struggling, it was on. The legs weren’t lose and it was comfortable on me. Success!! However, as I mentioned earlier, I am an oddly shaped swimmer. So, I was a bit nervous that the suit might act differently in the water.
Rewind back for a second to the European Masters. I had purchased a new suit, tried it on and decided to swim in it the night before the competition. When I dived in, an air bubble formed on my chest. I stopped, readjusted and swam on. This air bubble did not happen again and didn’t affect my racing. I was now questioning if this would happen to my new suit. Researching online, most reviews advised against wearing it in a warm up as it could stretch the fabric. I took this into account, and went against my gut feeling to try it out.
My first swim in the world masters games was the 200 I.M. I had the new suit on, I felt great and was ready to go. I dived in, and immediately knew something was wrong. The dreaded air bubble appeared in the chest area. It stayed for the whole 200 IM. It was not only a distraction but also a massive drag- definitely not something you need in an IM. Disaster, you would think, but I managed a P.B. and also placed 3rd on the podium!
I was annoyed, because I felt it kept me back from a better time and maybe a better placing on the podium. But, I had two more swims to go. In both of my next two swims, the togs was perfect! It didn’t drag, had no air bubble, and was perfectly fitted on the legs. It was excellent! It’s flexible material made the breaststroke kick easier than in other suits. There was little or no restriction. The water seemed to glide off the togs, meaning less resistance.
On reflection, it is a fantastic racing suit and I would highly recommend it!
To see this suit on Amazon Click here