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I Love Swim Shirts Jackets - Swimming Pool Apparel - Aqua Shirts

Updated on March 25, 2016

Long ago I crafted my own aqua shirt or swim shirt by re-purposing a compression pullover for use in the water. I was comfortable and my fitness clients were all jealous - it looked great and it was even more comfortable than it appeared. Yet nothing was available in the marketplace until now. The swim shirt or sometimes referred to as the "aqua shirt" are now is available commercially. Additionally, swim shirts are offered in great colors and a variety of options including my personal favorite the zippered jacket.

Dive into swim fitness and see what new fashion forward apparel items are available for water sports and swim fitness.

Aqua Shirt By Coolibar

Aqua Shirt / Swim Shirt By Coolibar
Aqua Shirt / Swim Shirt By Coolibar | Source

Swim Shirts Jackets for Swimming Paddle Boarding Surfing

Unlined Aqua Shirt by H20Wear
Unlined Aqua Shirt by H20Wear | Source
Swim Shirt by As We Change
Swim Shirt by As We Change | Source
Swimming Shirt - Rash Guard  by Solartex
Swimming Shirt - Rash Guard by Solartex | Source

What To Look For in a Swim Shirt

The question you must answer when shopping for an aqua shirt or swim shirt is what your purposes are - where and how do you intend to use this shirt? Do you always swim indoors? Do you sometimes go to the open water either lakefront or oceanfront? Do you participate in swim fitness classes indoors throughout the week and then on the weekends opt for your stand up paddle board or kayak? First determining your principle use, will help you make the the best decision for all your water activities.

Function Follows Form - Aquatic Shirt Jacket

Why is an aquatic shirt or jacket needed for the swimming pool? In the age of frugality and saving heating costs, many swimming pools maintain a warm water temperature and yet the air temperature can be chilling for many people.

Just as we enjoy jackets for their functionality of added warmth, so too, the aquatic jacket or shirt provides an added level of warmth and insulation.

To Zip or Not - That is the Question

To my mind, the very best solution for all aquatic activities it the convenient zipped jacket made in fabric that is chlorine and UV resistant. There is no question for me, I know simply that I like choices and the zipped jacket offers the best of everything - an open option for me whether I am indoors or out in the elements.

Swim Shirts - Great for Men and Women

When you look at the practicality of the swim shirt, you can see why the surfers quickly adapted the swim shirt to their sport. And now you will wonder why we took so long to adapt the swim shirt to all water sports and the swimming pool.

Swim shirts are great for both men and women. While the origins of the swim shirt are the surfer for a rash guard, the practicality of the discreteness combined with UV protection combined with shear comfort makes the swim shirt a lasting piece of necessary equipment for all water sports.


Multi-Purpose - Paddle Board Shirts - Surfing

The beauty of the swim shirt is it can be used in other water sports beyond the swimming pool. Take for example the growing popularity of the stand up paddle board. More often we are seeing swim shirts offered and cross marketed and labelled as "Short Sleeve Paddle Swim Shirt".

If you are seeking to use your swim shirt outdoor in any manner - an exterior swimming pool or open water for your paddle board, do take special care and look for the amount of UV protection offered in that garment.


Chlorine and Salt Water Resistant

Good quality garments often will state the fabrics ability to resist chlorine and salt water. These are important qualities that will determine the life of your garment.

Do not, do as I did, re-purpose a compression shirt intended for indoor use. The fabric will not last.


UV - UPF Rating

When you have outdoor activities, do look for clothing that is rated for UV protection. There is now a new rating scale designed specifically for fabric. It is called the "Ultraviolet Protection Factor" or UPF, it is a rating system specific to fabric that measures the UV protection. It is very similar to the SPF rating system used for sunscreens. For your convenience, a copy of the rating scale is provided below.

UPF Rating Scale

UPF Rating Scale for UV Protection on Fabrics
UPF Rating Scale for UV Protection on Fabrics | Source

Zip Rash Guard Jacket

Ladies Zip Jacket-long sleeve rash by solartex
Ladies Zip Jacket-long sleeve rash by solartex

Swim Shirt Jacket Online Retailer Sources

Apparel Retailers Offering Aqua Shirts

Swimming Gear/Apparel Online Retailers

Surfing Gear Online Retailers - Rash Guards and More!

Specialized Equipment - Specialized Clothing

Unless you live near surf shops, swim shirts may not be readily available to you.

Just as we shop for specialized equipment more often online than in the brick and mortar storefronts,

I would recommend checking out these websites for the best variety.

While price is always an option, do keep in mind this piece of clothing is more than apparel, it is your gear.

Gear in the sporting world is equivalent to your tools - choose them carefully, invest in them wisely and they will serve you throughout the years.

While I anticipate the variety to grow and more retailers to offer the swim shirt in multiple styles and colors, for now I have provided a list simply to get started categorized by principle type of retailer - surfing verses swimming verses general outdoor gear.

Great Gift - Swim Shirt - Swim Jacket

Gear of all sorts always makes a wonderful gift. So too with the swim shirt. If you know a swimmer, surfer or even a beach comber, you might ask their opinion discretely and then actively pursue the purchase of the swim shirt.

Share Your Experiences

Do you own a swim shirt or jacket?

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© 2013 Kelly Kline Burnett

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