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Triathlon Swim Suit

USA Triathlon events all start with the swim, and a quality triathlon swim suit is an important part of your triathlon equipment.


For women, when you start training you should at least invest in a one-piece competition swimsuit. These suits are usually resistant to chlorine for your swimming pool sessions, and have a fairly high neck, a racer back and fit snugly to your body. The higher neck help reduce drag from the suit by not allowing water between the suit and your skin. This also keeps you more aerodynamic and buoyant, and allows the water to more easily slide over you.

The Speedsuit


In a category between a swimsuit and a triathlon swim suit is the speedsuit. Designed for non-wetsuit swimming competitions, like the one-piece competition swimsuit it increases buoyancy and allows the water to glide more easily over your body with less drag. Additionally, it is also designed to remove easily for your transition into the next leg of the event. Short-Distance Three-Event Swimsuit

Once you start competing, you should invest in, at least, a triathlon swim suit. that is specifically designed to be worn for all three events in the shorter distance triathlon competitions. A woman's triathlon swimsuit usually has a built in bra and a pad (called a "chamois") for the cycling portion of the triathlon.

The Ultimate Triathlon Skinsuit

For longer distance events, a tri-suit or skinsuit is recommended. The tri-suit is the super garment for triathletes to wear for all three events, and comes as a one or two-piece garment. The top is usually more modest than even the competition swimsuit, and sometimes contains a built in shelf bra. The bottom is built more like biking shorts, but has with a thinner pad that makes swimming and running easier.



For pool training a snug jammer or brief-style swim suit is recommended, as a loose fitting swim trunk will get water between it and your body. As you move through the water, one of two things will happen: the trunks will come down (or off) or they will capture water. The first could be embarrassing, and the second increases your drag as you try to swim, making your workout less effective.

For short course events, some men will cycle and run in their swimsuits, or swim in their bike shorts. However, the padding in the bike shorts may interfere with swimming and running, or cause chafing. In short course events, this is not as much of an issue.

In longer triathlon events, a tri-suit or skinsuit is recommended. Like the women's tri-suit, it comes as a one or two-piece garment with a thin chamois for biking and running comfort.

There are many options and price ranges for a swimsuit suitable for competition. Before making a large investment check out the options available and see what triathlon swim suit is best for you. Also refer to the rules for your event and reference the USAT approved skinsuit and speedsuit list prior to buying.

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