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How To Loosen Up A Stiff Wetsuit (Easy Tips)

How To Loosen Up A Stiff Wetsuit

Wetsuits are essential to swimmers for a variety of reasons, for buoyancy, keeping them warm in cold water, protection, compression, and so on.

Swimmers become faster when wearing a wetsuit, in open waters the winds and waves become more tolerable for sufferers. 

Even with all the good reasons as to why a wetsuit is necessary, it is very common for people to find new wetsuits uncomfortable.

Most times when a new wetsuit is gotten it can be rather stiff, or sometimes snug, this does depend on the material. 

Putting on a wetsuit for the first time would seem a bit too tight, stiff, and somewhat uncomfortable.

Wetsuits are however designed to be snug, but you should not feel uncomfortable or like you are being squeezed or even feel claustrophobic when you put it on.

If you just got a new wetsuit and it seems rather stiff or you have not worn yours in a while and now it feels stiff on your body.

In this guide, I will show you how to loosen up the stiff wetsuit.

How To Loosen Up A Stiff Wetsuit

Some professionals have shown concern about loosening up a new wetsuit that is not needed.

But for those who are new to swimming activities, I can tell you for a fact that in reality, it is necessary to loosen up your stiff wetsuit.

Tip 1. Stretch in your wetsuit

One of the first things you can do to loosen up your wetsuit is to double stretch while wearing your stiff wetsuit.

Before you go diving, surfing, or any other water activity, it is always good to stretch properly in your wetsuit, and after you are done stretch properly again. 

So if your wetsuit is stiff just stretch while wearing the wetsuit.

Stretch for at least 5 to 10 minutes before and after embarking on your water activity, stretch your lower and upper body to loosen it up. 

Doing these stretches before and after going in water would ensure the neoprene is stretched while dry and wet.

Some warm-up techniques can also help to loosen up the shoulder and torso, warm up technique like jumping jacks, jogging on the spot, arm swings squats, and so on.

Tip 2. Let a friend help you

If you have a friend who is bigger in size than you are, or it could be a friend of a friend let them wear your wetsuit for at least an hour. 

Make sure the person's size difference from yours is not too much so they can fit into the wetsuit.

Wetsuits are naturally stretchy so they will still give a snug fit after your bigger friend has worn them for about an hour, or even lesser time. 

Even if it is for just 10 minutes it would help loosen up the wetsuit.

It is best if you can have your bigger friend do some warm-up while wearing the suit so it would loosen up the shoulder, arms, torso, and other parts that might be stiff in the wetsuit.

Tip 3. Pull the wetsuit

Most times a wetsuit can be stiff from not being used for a long time so before putting it on you can call a friend to help you pull the wetsuit.

You can do this while the wetsuit is wet or dry it matters not.

This method of pulling the wetsuit will help to loosen up areas that can not be stretched with body movement, like the wrist, neck, and ankle parts that can hurt if it is too tight.

Twist the wetsuit slowly, do not twist it too tight so it won’t damage the wetsuit. 

While it is twisted, hold the waist of the suit while your friend holds the neck and pulls it lightly a few times.

Then spread out and shake the wetsuit, then hold the legs and pull them lightly a few times, and do the same with the arms. 

Then pull the holes that your limbs pass through lightly so it does not get worn on or tear.


Generally wearing your wetsuit and going a full day of water activity would help loosen up your stiff wetsuit over time, but that would take longer than any of the methods listed above.

You can do one or try all of the methods to loosen up your stiff wetsuit but be careful not to damage the wetsuit in the process.

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