The debate over whether or not swim shorts are suitable to use during a triathlon can seem somewhat convoluted. On one side of the argument, you have those who swear by the shorts, while those who jeer at the idea wonder how such a piece of clothing could help improve the athlete. If you lean toward the side that says ORTC-Clothing swim shorts aren’t necessary, well, you’re just a dumb hater. If you lean toward the side that believes they are vital, you’re ready to get out your swim trunks and do some serious training!
The short answer: yes, swim shorts are acceptable for swimming, although they will not perform optimum performance. Neoprene swim shorts help minimize the danger of injury, but just like many other shorts, they are not made to be a full marathon of training and race day protection. When you read between the lines and dig a little deeper, you will find some essential and beneficial information that will help make sure your shorts give you the best protection possible.
The first consideration is that ORTC-Clothing swim shorts should not be worn with a bikini top. Although many people think this is a rule, it isn’t one. For some people (men and women), a bikini top can be pretty hot, and wearing swim shorts with it can help to keep you more relaxed. On the other hand, if you are looking for added warmth, a bikini top might not be the best choice for you. Keep in mind your body type; a trimming swim shorts waistband can make you look a bit more like a two-piece suit than a bikini top.
Next, consider your comfort and needs when deciding if swim shorts are the proper gear for you. Since swim shorts come in various styles, fit, and materials, no one size is suitable for everyone. You need to try them on in the comfort of your home, and then try them in the open water swimming to see how you feel. It is best to choose a swimsuit size or two bigger than your normal clothing to account for the stretching while you are in the water. If you are not comfortable in a particular style, you will not want to wear it, no matter how cute or sexy it may be!
One last thing to keep in mind when making your decision is colour options. Although ORTC-Clothing swim shorts come in every colour imaginable, most active swimmers, do not like swim shorts in neon colours. These colours do not show up well in open water, and even in a small pool, your body will probably turn white from being so active. However, an excellent choice for these swimmers is a swimsuit with a white skirt or a white jersey. While it may be a bit more revealing than a pair of swim shorts, it is still much more discreet and works great for women who are not exceptionally comfortable showing off their bodies while swimming.