Why Do Swimmers Wear Tights?

Last Updated on August 1st, 2023

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A regular bathing suit is fine when lounging around by the pool or going for a normal swim. However, if you are getting into the professional swimming scene, you may want to look at a pair of swimming tights.

Swimming tights can help to reduce drag, keep the muscles warm and reduce muscle vibration. While it makes only minor differences, even shaving off a few seconds can help a lot when it comes down to it.

If you want to learn more about swimming tights and whether they may be a good fit for you, continue reading below.

Swimmer in tight swimwear and yellow cap prepared for swimming - Why Do Swimmers Wear Tights?

Do they Swim Faster Because of it?

People do not generally swim with tights because they are faster. However, professional or older swimmers may find they get the benefit of tights or tight swimwear because it can reduce drag and relax the vibration of the muscles.

It may also keep loose skin if you are a little more elderly or have lost a lot of weight recently, as it keeps everything in place while you are swimming.

However, most people won’t see much of a difference swimming with tights, as it doesn’t reduce drag enough to cut off more than a couple of seconds, which won’t make that much of a difference to many people.


Is it Harder to Swim in Tights?

If you aren’t using proper swimming tights, or you are unused to the additional weight, it can make it a bit harder to swim in. The tights need to fit well and not expand or hold on to water when swimming, or they can worsen your swim.

However, with a good pair of swimming tights and some practice, some people find that they enjoy them more. It allows for a lot more modesty than other swimwear and protects against colder temperatures.


Swimmer in tight swimwear and yellow cap prepared for swimming - Why Do Swimmers Wear Tights?

Can Amateurs Wear it?

There is no reason that amateurs cannot wear swimming tights. However, it is recommended that you practice with the swimming tights in a controlled environment like a lap pool with a lot of people around the first few times.

This will allow you to make sure that you are comfortable in the swimming gear and that it is not impeding your movements too much.

Even if you usually swim in non-traditional pools or places like lakes or ponds, it is a good idea to practice the first few times somewhere where you can be helped if the tights are making it too hard to swim.


Are Swimmer Tights Expensive?

Swimmer tights don’t have to be expensive. While there are some expensive brands out there, they are not the only ones. If you are new to using swimming tights and are unsure if you will want to use them long-term, try out a cheaper pair first.

By trying out cheaper ones, you still get the same material your bathing suit would be made out of, but they may not quite be as form-fitting or the thickness you may want.

Then, later, if you find you enjoy the swimming tights, you can go for brands that are more expensive or suit your needs.

For the most part, a decent pair of swimming tights can go for somewhere between 20 and 60 dollars. The upper end of that may be a little expensive, but on the cheaper side, it isn’t much more than regular swimsuit bottoms in terms of cost.


Where Can You Buy it?

While it may be hard to find swimmer tights in stores where you could buy a bikini or cute swimsuit, they should be available anywhere that tailors to professional swimmers. Also, many surfers use these swimming tights to protect their legs while surfing.

You can also check online if you can’t find these tights in a swimming or surfing shop. Amazon, eBay, and specific swimming sites all carry swimming tights. They also come in many options, so you can find a pair that works for you.


Final Thoughts

Many people use tights to keep warm before or after swimming, but you can also use swimming tights while swimming. While professionals often use swimming tights to reduce drag, they can also help with issues of modesty and warmth.

These tights are not usually expensive, costing about the same price as a traditional pair of swimsuit bottoms. This makes it easy for professionals and amateurs to wear them and try out a pair without a lot of commitment.

Plus, if you are considering being a professional swimmer, it may be good to get used to them now and make practice easier.