Blueseventy Helix Wetsuit
Charlie Morris, July 9, 2011
The Helix is one of a range of suits from Blueseventy, designed for swimmers with “natural buoyancy”. It is a highly flexible suit, giving a more natural feel to swimming than the other stiffer suits.
The suit has a couple of characteristics that differentiate it from other suits in the market. One of the most distinctive features of the suit is that it de-couples the arms from the body by using a wrap-round insert, and has thinner lining under the arms. Wetsuit swimming can be an alien experience for swimmers due to the lack of a water-flow feeling on the skin. The thinner under-arm lining of the Helix allows the swimmer the feel the flow of water, providing for a more natural skin-like swimming experience. One slight disadvantage of this is that it does undoubtably make the suit colder on the arms, something to be aware of on more extreme icy excursions.
Another distinctive feature of the suit is that it has a downward zip unlike most triathlon wetsuits. This provides for easier unzipping at transition, and potentially the second or two that stands between winning and losing. The downside to this is that it does make the suit near impossible to put on without the help of someone else to connect the zip at the top.
Two of us were fortunate enough to test the suit in a few of this year’s Great Swim events, and we were both extremely impressed. It is by far the most comfortable wetsuit I have ever worn. The suit is nicely flexible and the freedom of movement in the shoulders and arms is particularly liberating. One downside was that we both got a bit of neck chaffing after first swims. This was easily solved with a spot of baby oil gel, but something to watch out for if it chaffing happens repeatedly.
Overall, we felt that the fit and comfort while swimming of the Helix puts the suit in a class of its own. It looks pretty cool too. I want one.