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Race Prep & Gear

What is a racing suit and do I need one?

Racing suits, or tech suits, are suits that high performance swimmers wear for their big competitions. The suits are made from a special fabric that has hydrophobic properties designed to repel water to allow the suit and swimmer to flow through the water with reduced drag. The suit also offers compression that will keep your muscles firing quickly and working more efficiently to help reduce fatigue. There are varying levels of compression offered in the range of racing suits available, and there are many factors that will help determine which racing suit is best for you; factors like your body type, what races you specialize in, your experience in the sport. Some suits offer high compression and are best for sprinters. Other suits have less compression, offer more flexibility, and feel lighter on your body; these suits are designed for long distance, breaststroke, and I.M. swimmers.  
Typically we recommend that tech suits should only be worn by swimmers ages 14 & up; once their skills, technique, and race experience have matured.
We have a wide variety of entry-level to mid-level racing suits for those who are still developing in these areas.

Can you recommend the best racing suit?

This is really dependent on your level of swimming and your personal preferences. However, based on our 40 plus years of experiences as a team of swimmers, former swimmers, coaches, lifeguards and provincial, national and world champions, here are our suggested guidelines.

If you are a mid level swimmer with some experience racing, are maybe attending provincials, consider a Speedo LZR Pro, Arena ST, R-Evo One, and Speedo Power Plus.

If you are attending senior or age group nationals or swimming at an international level (this is the highest level for racing suits), consider the Arena Carbon Series, or the Speedo Pure Collection.

What is my racing suit size?

Sizing is extremely important with racing suits! Racing suits are supposed to hug everypart of your body! The compression comes from the structure of the suit, rather than how tightly it fits. Ideally you want to go one to three sizes down from what you train in. However, this may vary depending on the brand of your training suit and the brand of your racing suit. You should also take into consideration your body shape  as some brands fit different body types better than others. We find that Arena racing suits generally fit swimmers with more narrow hips, while Speedo racing suits work better for swimmers with bigger hips.


We recommend, if possible, that you establish your racing suit size in any of the following ways:

  • Visit one of our retail store locations and try racing suits on. Different brands and styles have different fits and our Swim Experts can assist you in getting the best fit possible.
  • Our handy sizing chart will offer you guidance. Select the size you think will be best for you. Remember, you may return or exchange items that do not fit as long as they have not been worn and tags are still intact. Find out more in our return policy.

*Note: Wearing a racing suit that is not the right size may actually hinder performance. A suit that is too big will create drag and not offer correct compression for optimal performance. While a racing suit that is too tight will be too constrictive and not allow you to use your body’s natural range of motion.

How to put on a racing suit/what size should I get?

Race suits need to be worn tight - like a second skin. If you wear the right size, it will be difficult to get into, and with these suits being constructed with material that is delicate, extra caution must be taken when putting on a racing suit. Use the pads of your fingers when putting on your racing suit, and not your nails. We also suggest using a sock or something similar to put over your hand for protection. For girls, it is very common to have someone help you put on the racing suit! 

  • Racing suits are meant to be advantageous - with designs to maximize body-shaping, compression and repelling water. That means suits fit extremely snug. 
  • That being said every manufacturer varies - always try on a suit before buying
  • Tech suits that restrict movement, restrict breathing or is too loose is a tech suit that isn't working for you.
  • It will take a long time (~10+ minutes) to get your suit on. So make sure you leave yourself enough time; if you rush, you are more likely to damage your suit.
  • Work the suit up slowly from the bottom, using the pads of your fingers (NOT fingertips) especially at the waist line; do not pull the suit at any seam. Don’t forget to cut your nails or even put a plastic bag over your hands to help prevent tearing
  • Making sure that the sections of the suit are correctly positioned over your body, this will help free up additional ‘slack’ for you to be able to work the suit up your body.

How to take care of a racing suit/how many races can I expect?

High performance suits are not designed for durability and long periods of use like practice suits, so it’s important to exercise extra care.

  • Leaving your un-rinsed suit at the bottom of your swim bag will damage it. To keep your suit in top racing condition, take the suit off after your race and rinse it in cold water between races.
  • After the completion of the meet use a gentle detergent such as AQUAMATE to properly remove the chlorine from the suit.
  • Dry your suit flat or hang upside down from legs – this will prevent water gathering at the crotch and damaging the bonding in this area.
  • Never use any type of washer or dryer and avoid hang-wringing and suit spinning/drying machines as well.
  • There is no pre-determined amount of races you can expect, no guaranteed amount of time. If you follow the above steps, getting the chlorine out as soon as possible you can expect to have the suit last longer.

What are racing goggles?

Many competitive swimmers have a pair of goggles that are exclusively for racing. Unlike recreational goggles or training goggles, racing goggles are designed to be hydrodynamic. The goggle should fit snug in your eyes, without protruding too much or creating drag. The silicone straps will keep the goggle from shifting on your head. 

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TAS Holiday Greetings!

Happy holidays from all of us at TAS! 

Whether you are using this break over the holidays for a little rest & relaxation and quality time with your family - or if you are planning on travelling somewhere warm for training camp - we wish you all the best over this holiday season! 

We will be taking some time to recover from our busy fall season as well and wanted to share with you what our holiday store and office hours will be over the coming weeks. Please see our Holiday Schedule at the end of this blog.


Boxing Week Specials!! 

We will be having a sale in store and online this year for Boxing Day!

December 26th - January 2nd

Take an additional 20% off all clearance items - use code: BOXING20 during checkout to have this discount applied.

We can also now accept your Shark Card discount code online as well as special sale discount codes, so you can apply both discount codes to your order and the discount will be applied to all eligible items! 

Clearance items will be final sale - please see return policy for details. 

Team Aquatic Supplies Return Policy

 

 

TAS Holiday Schedule:

Retail Holiday

  • Regular hours up to Dec 23rd
  • December 24th
    • Calgary: Open until 2pm
    • TPASC: Open until 2pm
    • North Vancouver: Open until 2pm
    • Burlington: Open until 2pm
    • Ottawa: Open until 2pm
    • Richmond: CLOSED 
    • Nanaimo: CLOSED 
  • December 25th
    • All Stores: CLOSED
  • December 26th:
    • All Stores: CLOSED
  • December 27th:
    • All Stores: CLOSED
  • December 28th - 30th:
    • All Stores: Open for Regular Hours
  • December 31st:
    • All Stores: Open until 2pm
  • Jan 1st & 2nd:
    • All Stores: CLOSED
  • Jan 3rd:
    • All Stores: Resume Regular Store Hours

Office Holiday Schedule

  • Office will be closed Dec 23rd - Jan 3rd
  • If you need anything, please call one of our stores and we will do our best to help you out.
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DMC Fins Elite Max Review

The DMC Fins newest edition to their line up is the Elite Max. This new fin has a similar design to their tried and true Kandy fin, but with one key difference - the Reverse V Rail (RVR) technology. 


This key feature separates this fin from the rest of the field as no other brand offers something like it! 

The super soft silicone used in the construction of the Elite Max is a crucial component of the RVR technology. 

The rail that runs the length of fins along the side is generally there to provide a bit of structure and rigidity to the short blade fins to help swimmers increase their strength and power. Those rails, like on the Kandy, are angled outwards to optimize water flow. 

However, the product design team at DMC Fins have revolutionized the rail to add some additional training benefits and directed the rails inward (see image below).


As we mentioned before, the super soft silicone is a key part of this technology and what ends up happening is as the swimmer kicks down and up, the rail actually flexes slightly and acts as a concave “bowl” shape structure to help catch a bit more water which provides swimmers with a bit more resistance to improve strength and power! 

Check out this video here to see a demonstration of this key feature:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=p_D5_puIuw8



In addition to the open-heel design and soft silicone material, the features all combine to make one of the best fins on the market for competitive swimmers! 


Shop DMC Elite Max Fins Here!

https://team-aquatic.com/products/dmc-elite-max-fins

 

Sizing Guide Here:

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DMC Fins Elite Kandy Review

DMC Fins are the original manufacturers of the tried and true open-heel silicone fin design that is popular on the market today! Their Elite Kandy fins were the first ones on the market to incorporate the silicone material, open heel design, and V Rail technology! 


The open-heel design is one of the most sought after features in a competitive fin for many coaches and swimmers alike. The open heel allows for a more natural ankle movement when compared to other styles of fins (such as the boot style design).  


DMC Fins’ V Rail technology runs the length of the fins on the side and provides a channel for efficient water displacement when kicking up and down. The V Rail also provides a bit more stiffness to the blade to increase power of the kick while simultaneously allowing the swimmer to keep the benefits of the short blade fin (increased kick speed and decreased fatigue). 


The asymmetric design allows stabilizes your ankle when kicking down during powerful kicks, which helps not only increase speed but it decreases fatigue and stress on the ankle joint. 


DMC has incorporated an off-centre drain chute in the boot to help your fins stay on during turns and push offs. 


These fins have one of the most trusted and popular designs on the market and many other brands have adopted a similar designed fin to their product line due to the amazing features and benefits of this fin!

https://team-aquatic.com/products/dmc-elite-kandy-fins

Foot sizing guide here:

 

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Swim Expert Review: Dolfin Lightstrike Racing Armor

The Dolfin Lightstrike offers swimmers uncompromising fit and performance. One of the most unique and high tech racing suits on the market. With Dolfin’s Perfecta-Fit and Styku 3D body scanner, Dolfin was able to create the perfect sizing system for all athletes to ensure swimmers can find their best fitting racing suit with the Dolfin Lightstrike. The unique and exclusive micro-sizing fit will allow for complete customization for every swimmer - with variable fit options in the 3 key zones: Chest, Torso, and Hips/Legs.  Swimmers can choose from open/closed back, regular/long torso length, and tight/flex leg giving an unprecedented 6 fit options per size to make sure your racing suit is perfect for you!

The suit itself is also leading edge in terms of the technical features it provides, so not only will the suit fit your specific body type the best - it will also be one of our best performing suits.

The fabric is woven in an intricate design – while being aesthetically pleasing, it also serves to provide the suit with increased strength, durability, and compression qualities. Stormlight shell fabric and hyperlight lining gives this suit ones of the highest strength to weight ratio of any race suit fabric on the market.

The seam design on the suits provides targeted compression with their Variable Compression – with zones to provide more compression where you want it, and less compression where you don’t.

 

The Dolfin Lightstrike is has a very high amount of compression built into the suit in those targeted zones with the Core Power and Vibration Control taping. The Core Power taping is design to compress, control, and activate your major power centre - your core. The Vibration Control taping is 3D-molded to mimic your anatomy to reduce drag and control to provide maximum energy return.

 

This suit is perfect for those swimmers looking for the ultimate in technical features while still offering flexibility and lightweight fabric. Though do not underestimate the targeted compression zones, they do offer a very high amount of compression and give this suit a very snug fit. With the Core Power and Vibration Control taping - this suit will be VERY hard to get on, but once it is on it will feel like a second skin.

 

Swim Expert Tips:

  • Go down 1-2 sizes from your training suit size and fit preferences, but we do recommend most swimmers only size down 1 size from their training suit size.
  • Taller female swimmers (5’7” and up) should consider the long torso option.
  • The tight leg vs flex would depend on stroke and swimmer size/preference - breaststrokers and IMers should consider the flex leg.
  • Be Patient when putting this suit on and give yourself some extra time before your race - it will take a bit longer than other racing suits and will be quite hard to get on, but once on it will feel like a proper fitting suit.

 

Electrify your lane with Dolfin Lightstrike Racing Armor!

 

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