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Kiteboarding Wetsuits Frequently Asked Questions:

Getting Started Kiteboarding at Powerkiteshop


Starting the sport without any knowledge?

Powerkiteshop’s trained staff who all fly kites are always keen to help you, but first, check out our most commonly asked questions to get you started.

If you have a question that hasn't been answered here - you can simply call us on +44 (0) 121 544 9514 and we will be pleased to hear your query!
 

 

Kiteboarding / Kitesurfing Wetsuits Quick Links:

How does a wetsuit work ? :

Getting Started Kiteboarding at Powerkiteshop

A wetsuit creates a barrier against the elements utilizing the insulating properties of closed cell neoprene.

Neoprene is a closed cell foam made up of thousands of tiny air bubbles known as cells.

The air within the cells creates an insulating barrier which slows down the conduction of heat and cold and allows body heat to be retained.

It also allows a layer of water to be trapped next to the skin. As the body heat warms up the water layer, it acts as an additional insulator.

For advice on selection call Telephone + 44 (0) 0121 544 9514

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Why are there different wetsuit thicknesses ? :

Getting Started Kiteboarding at Powerkiteshop

A wetsuit thickness relates to the thickness of the neoprene in millimetres and determines the temperature the wetsuit can be use whilst still keeping you warm.

The higher the number, the warmer the wetsuit will be.

Using a suit that is 5/4 as an example we know that the body area is 5mm thick and the arms and legs are 4mm.

The first number always refers to the body and the second relates to the legs and arms.

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What thickness wetsuit should I be using ? :

Getting Started Kiteboarding at Powerkiteshop

The thickness of the neoprene utilized in a wetsuit will determine its warmth and flexibility.

A thick wetsuit provides a lot of insulation but can inhibit flexibility while a thin wetsuit will be very flexible but can inhibit insulation. 

  • A 3/2 wetsuit is generally suited for summer and autumn.
  • A 5/4 wetsuit keeps us warm when out winter and spring.

UK waters average around 10°C with maximum and minimum of 15°C and 5°C respectively. With this in mind we recommend a 5/4 or greater for all year round use.

If you tend to travel a lot to different kite spots you will find generally find a full length summer wetsuit or a long-arm short leg suit will be more versatile and useful than a shorty.

If you are lucky enough to live in a warmer climate then you will most likely want a shorty as it is typically the most appropriate wetsuit.

Average European Water Temperatures 
Belguim 8°C Germany 6°C Portugal 17°C
Bulgaria 10°C Greece 15°C Romania 9°C
Croatia 16°C Iceland 5°C Slovenia 12°C
Cyprus 18°C Italy 15°C Spain 16°C
Denmark 6°C Ireland 10°C Sweden 2°C
Estonia 3°C Latvia 2°C UK 10°C
Finland 2°C Netherlands 8°C  
France 13°C Norway 4°C  
Popular Worldwide Destinations
Australia 20°C Brazil 25°C Egypt 23°C
Kenya 29°C Morocco 17°C South Africa 17°C


Click here for our range of Summer Wetsuits >>

Click here for our range of Winter Wetsuits >> 

What style of wetsuit do I need ? :

Getting Started Kiteboarding at Powerkiteshop

Choosing a style of wetsuit can determine how flexible and how warm your wetsuit will be.

Shorty: 
A shorty wetsuit covers the body and upper parts of the arms and legs giving you maximum flexibility and suitable for warmer climates.

Click here for our range of Shorty Wetsuits >>

Longarm Shorty:
Covers the arms and upper parts of the legs allowing for warmth yet still flexible in the legs for kiteboarding.

Suitable for spring to autumn UK waters and most European destinations.

Click here for our range of Shorty Wetsuits >>

Shortarm:
Covers the legs and upper parts of the arms allowing for warmth yet still flexible in the arms for kiteboarding.


Suitable for spring to autumn UK waters and most European destinations.

Full Length:
Covers the body, arms and legs to your wrists and ankles and also the head if  the wetsuit has integrated hood.

Offering maximum warmth and is suitable for winter / summer especially the northern UK and European destinations.

Click here for our range of Full Length Wetsuits >>


 








What is a Steamer Wetsuit ? :

Getting Started Kiteboarding at Powerkiteshop

A 'Steamer' is a wetsuit with sealed seams, usually achieved by blind stitching.

This stops the majority of cold water from entering the suit.

Winter wetsuits are steamers typically with a 5mm body and legs for warmth and 3mm arms for manoeuvrability.

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What is the difference between single and double lined neoprene? :

Getting Started Kiteboarding at Powerkiteshop

Single lined neoprene is smooth on the outside of the suit and has a lining on the inside.

It tends to be more flexible but is more prone to damage.

Single lined suits dry quicker in the wind due to the fact that water rolls off the suit and overall provide better insulation than a double lined suit.

Double-lined neoprene is surrounded by a layer of nylon on both sides.

This provides extra protection to the neoprene making the suits more rugged and suitable for use on beaches with shingle.

Double lined suits are the more widely used suits for kitesurfing due to their robust nature.

The nylon on the inner side of the neoprene prevents neoprene from sticking to your skin making it easier to get on and off.

Click here for our range of Wetsuits and Accessories >>








 

What are the advantages of a stretchy wetsuit ? :

Getting Started Kiteboarding at Powerkiteshop

The more stretch in a wetsuit the greater the flexibility.

Due to the advances in wetsuit technology, stretchy neoprene even in entry level suits (around 50% stretch) offer comfort and flexibility.

More expensive wetsuits with super stretchy neoprene (up to 200% stretch) are generally a better fit as they have ability to ‘mold’ to your body and eliminate any gaps around the waist and back area as well as joints allowing for even extra warmth.

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Why do some wetsuits have different neoprene ? :

Getting Started Kiteboarding at Powerkiteshop

Wetsuits need to be flexible in the right areas such as behind the knees and the arms but also durable on areas that are prone to abrasion such as on the front of the knees and on the waist and back area where a kite harness sits.

By using different neoprene with different characteristics you can achieve a light-weight, flexible and durable wetsuit.

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How are wetsuits constructed ? :

Getting Started Kiteboarding at Powerkiteshop

Wetsuits are held together using numerous methods. Below are some of the more common methods.

Flatlock Stitch:
Achieved by lapping the neoprene together, this creates a flat, comfortable seam that can allow water to penetrate slightly which is usually warmed by your body heat.

Normally found on summer suits or shortys. 

Click here for our range of Wetsuits and Accessories >>




Glued & Blindstitched:
First the neoprene is glued together.

A curved needle then brings the thread through the neoprene in such way, that it exits on the same side that it went in, without punching through the neoprene. The result is watertight stitch with no holes through the neoprene.

A wetsuit with this type of stitch is significantly warmer than a flat lock suit. This is becoming the most common method of binding a wetsuit together.

Normally you see this in mid to top end suits.

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Liquid Seam: 
A rubber coating is applied over the glued and blind-stitched seams when sewing the neoprene to seal the inner and / or outer side of the stitches.

This makes them stronger and additionally closes any holes resulting in nearly 100% waterproof stitches.

Special rubber is also used when sewing the neoprene to seal the inner or/and outer side of the stitches.

Click here for our range of Wetsuits and Accessories >>

Do I need a Front or Back Zip Entry ? :

Getting Started Kiteboarding at Powerkiteshop

Back zip or front zip entry wetsuits are down to personal preference but can give differing amounts of warmth, flexibility and ease of use.

Back zip entry suits are easy to get on and off. On some backzip wetsuits you can get what is known as ‘flushing’ where cold water enters the suit through the zip and flushes out the water heated by your body.

Newer wetsuit designs sometimes have waterproof zips and an internal barrier that sits behind the zip that virtually eliminates this flushing keeping you warmer for longer.

Front entry suits are on the rise in popularity as there is virtually no chance of water entering the suit through the back, neck or front of the suit.

These suits are a little bit harder to get on and off than back zip suits but with the correct technique it is easy to master.

Check out our range of Wetsuits and Accessories here >>



 




 


 

 

Why are there men and womens versions of the same wetsuits ? :

Getting Started Kiteboarding at Powerkiteshop

A men's wetsuit requires a different panel layout to women's wetsuits, one that corresponds to the male body shape, especially in the chest and waist areas. Arm thickness is also increased and leg length is typically longer.

A ladies wetsuits normally corresponds to the female body shape in the chest and hip areas. Arm thickness is also reduced and leg length is normally shorter. All aspects are taken into account to help provide you with the warmest and flexible wetsuits to keep you riding for longer.

Click here for our range of Wetsuits and Accessories >>















 






 

Email Enquiries:

We will always endeavour to reply to your e-mail as quickly and as thoroughly as possible.

To ensure that the correct department receives your e-mail please contact:

Email Enquiries:

Order / General - info@powerkiteshop.com

Training - training@powerkiteshop.com

Website queries - webmaster@powerkiteshop.com

Media/Press - media@powerkiteshop.com

Alternatively you can enter your contact details and enquiry into the form below:

Contact Information

Telephone Enquiries - 0121 544 9514:

Our staff can answer most of the questions you may have.

If they do not know they will find out and get back to you as soon as possible.

To ensure that the correct department receives your e-mail please contact:

Our trained staff are available at the following times.

Monday-Friday: 10.00am to 6.00pm

TELEPHONE NUMBER: +44 (0) 121 544 9514

If you are calling from abroad, you can call the number below:
Landline Phone Number: +44 (0) 121 544 9514

All other times including weekends we're available via the help lines but we may be out flying!

If we are unavailable you can usually leave a message for a later response.

Powerkiteshop / Postal / Returns Address:

You can visit the shop, send any enquiry / cheque payments via post or return any item to the address below:

Powerkiteshop
Studio 2 - 4
Euro Business Park
Summerton Road
Oldbury
West Midlands
B69 2EL
United Kingdom

Items must be returned with a returns form enclosed by Recorded delivery and clearly marked for the attention of the Mail Order Dept.

Our trained staff are available at the following times.

We will not accept responsibility for lost parcels, or postal charges incurred when returning goods and we do have the right to refuse an exchange or refund, if we consider the goods have not been treated in accordance with the instructions provided with them.

Videos, DVD's will only be exchanged if faulty.

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