Health & Fitness Reviews
Speedo LZR Racer
Itâ€™s not often that world records in sport can be broken so effortlessly without the use of drugs or East German genetic engineering. Speedo however, for so often a name that brought a shuddering memory of middle-aged men leaving nothing to the imagination in the local hotel pool, released a product recently which simply revolutionised swimming.
130 world swimming records were broken in the 17 months after the LZR Racer and its various imitators hit the market. Individuals barely out of armbands were getting into 50-metre swimming pools and blasting seconds off record times that had stood since time immemorial. It may look like an overly snug onesy, but its revolutionary design minimises drag and gives shameless wearers an aerodynamic quality that would make a bullet envious.
Sadly, the LZR party was recently brought to an end by swimmingâ€™s world governing body FINA. The group ordered that menâ€™s swimsuits must at most cover the area from waist to knee and that all fabrics must be boring, old-fashioned â€˜textileâ€™. Although the regulations came in at the start of the year, Speedoâ€™s boffins have been busy coming up with alternative designs which cleverly subvert the spirit of the FINA edict without contradicting the letter.
So although you may no longer be able to use the debut LZR suits to give you the edge over Michael Phelps and his extraordinarily duck-like feet, you can still buy the next generation shorts for when you want to go splash around in your local community swimming pool. The latest editions are available through www.speedo.com from â‚¬188.
Nike Essential Good Men's Swim Jammer
If that is too rich for your blood (and letâ€™s face it, it probably is), you can opt for a knee-length number which provides only minimal aerodynamic benefits, but which looks enough like the LZR to allow you to convince onlookers that you shelled out a fortune. Step forward the horribly monikered Nike Essential Good Men's Swim Jammer.
Boasting such essential design elements as an elastic waist with draw-cord and machine washable 80 per cent nylon/20 per cent elastane fabric, your Swim Jammers also feature flat-lock stitching for improved performance.
This pair of peach smugglers looks just enough like its more expensive Speedo counterpart to enable you to fool some of the slower ladies you might come across in the local pool. But they will have to be especially dim. Because they have a Nike logo on the side.
You can get your grubby little mitts on a pair of Nike Essential Good Men's Swim Jammers for â‚¬16.50 plus postage through store.nike.com.
Aqua Sphere Aqua Skin Thermo-Guard
If youâ€™re uninterested in the opinions of your sportâ€™s governing body and would like to get a hold of a shin-to-kneck, banned-in-the-Olympics number then Aqua Sphereâ€™s Aqua Skin Thermo-Guard might be what youâ€™re after.
These little beauties are constructed from 0.5-1mm Glide Skin neoprene, not sure if that means anything to you, and makers say they offer increased speed and freedom of movement in water due to a low drag coefficient. Designed for both indoor and outdoor use, this gimp-like outfit also features special panels under the crotch that prevent chafing. Which is always nice.
That said, you better be a good swimmer because if a lifeguard has to pull your sorry arse from the deep end and youâ€™re head-to-toe in Thermo-Guard technology you will simply never live it down. He might even chuck you back in.
The Aqua Sphere Aqua Skin Thermo-Guard is available by ordering online through UK stockists such as www.swimshop4u.co.uk. Prices start at â‚¬98.