Swim caps, in fact, are primarily designed for swimmers, allowing a significant reduction in hydrodynamic drag while they’re swimming competitively. It features a smooth surface that makes water easily flow over; thus, swimmers can move a lot quicker and more fluid in the water, unlike when they do without one. More importantly, swim caps certainly improve their mobility, helping swimmers perform better, especially in a swimming competition.
In this post, we will be discussing everything that you need to know when it comes to swimming caps. Wearing swim caps not only adds performance benefits, but there are also many other reasons why swimmers don’t compete without one, which will be further explained in another section. If you’re curious, then keep on reading the rest of this post.
Why Do You Need to Wear a Swim Cap?
Swim caps do more than just keeping your hair dry while you’re swimming. You might wonder what other reasons swimmers wear one and we’re here to discuss it. Below are some of the few other reasons why wearing a swim cap is necessary:
Swim caps keep your hair out of your face
It wouldn’t be the best idea to let your hair down in front of your swim goggles, only causing you to be blinded in the middle of the swimming competition. With this, you might think of your swim cap as a tool for hair management.
Swim caps keep hair out of the swimming pool
It is rare that people talk about this very advantage of wearing a swim cap. However, you may have encountered at some a point a ball of hair coming through at you while you’re swimming, like an asteroid coming straight to Earth. You may think of it this way – swim caps keep the swimming pool clean.
Swim caps protect your hair from the harmful effects of chlorine
Swim caps don’t completely keep your hair dry, not unless you’re a breaststroker. However, what a swim cap does is that it keeps chlorine-soaked water away from your hair. Chlorine, if you’re not familiar, is a solvent that wouldn’t be best paired with human hair. This is also the reason why swimmers also use a special kind of shampoo to fully get rid of chlorine in their hair.
Swim caps allow you to be more hydrodynamic
As discussed earlier, swim caps keep you hydrodynamic in the water. This is probably the most relevant reason why competitive swimmers wear swim caps – it decreases the resistance and drag in the water. For instance, domed caps provide you with a wrinkle-free swim cap experience, which effectively minimizes your resistance in the swimming pool.
What Are the Different Types of Swim Caps?
Latex and rubber
As the name suggests, latex swim caps are produced using latex rubber. In fact, these swim caps are widely popular beginning in the 1920s. These are durable and since its existence, it is still the preferred type by competitive swimmers to date. The reason is that its tight fit allows swimmers to gain more speed while swimming competitively.
Latex and rubber swim caps are also very easy to write on using a permanent marker, making them very popular in triathlon competitions. However, you should be informed that even though latex and rubber swim caps protect your hair from chlorine, these are a lot more challenging to wear on and remove. In addition, there are those who are allergic to latex. This is something that you should be aware of in case you’re thinking of buying a new swim cap.
Today, silicone swim caps are considered the most popular swim caps on the market. These swim caps, in fact, were developed as a substitute to latex swim caps and for people who are allergic to latex. A disadvantage, however, is that silicone swim caps are more expensive than latex. Silicone swim caps are available in different colors. They are also flexible enough to wear on and off easily. However, you should know that silicone swim caps tend to slip easily when compared to latex swim caps.
Lycra swim caps, when compared to silicone and latex swim caps, are more comfortable to wear. These are made using the same material used in your swimsuit, so they provide you with a uniform look. To add, these swim caps have been proven to more durable than silicone and latex counterparts. However, you should be aware that these swim caps tend to slip and that these aren’t waterproof at all. Additionally, Lycra swim caps don’t protect your hair from chlorine as effective as latex and silicone swim caps.
If you’re wondering what materials are used to create neoprene swim caps, these are the same as those used in wetsuits, which are commonly used by triathletes and surfers. Neoprene swim caps are specifically designed to keep your head as warm as possible in cold water. This makes a lot of sense because you tend to lose heat, especially if you are swimming in cold water. Neoprene swim caps are a lot thicker than the previous ones mentioned in this section. They also often come in dark colors, features seams, and may be padded inside and may have a distinctive smell. Lastly, neoprene swim caps tend to be a lot pricier than its alternatives.
What Are the Different Sizes and Shapes of Swim Caps?
Swim caps come in the following shapes and sizes:
Now that we’ve covered everything there is to learn about swim caps, we do hope that this article shed some light in case you’re looking to buy a new one for yourself or your kid. Lucky for you, we’ve rounded up all the things that you need to know about this useful swimming gear. There’s a swim cap for everyone and it’s important that you know the basics first before you go out and buy one.