It used to be that any windsurfer looking for a new rubber onesie would be eyeing up single lined, shiny wetsuits. Thinking was that double layered (rough material) were more for immersive watersports such as surfing. Single layer suits, due to less evaporative cooling effects, were deemed more applicable for activities above the brine. These days wetty technology has evolved to the point the former is now null.
Enter Ride Engine’s APOC 5/4/3 hooded winter wetty that we’ve been using extensively over the last few months. In every scenario, from mild to super cold, flat water windsurfing to full-on waves and even a bit of stand up paddle boarding thrown in for good measure; it’s a rubber garment that’s had a thorough going over.
Firstly the fit: not every wetsuit hugs body parts efficiently. Ride Engine’s APOC, however, does the job superbly. With its ‘easy on’ nature we were sceptical about how warm the suit would actually be. Traditionally wetties that don’t cut the blood supply off tend to flush cold water more, resulting in a sudden chill post-dunkings. Not the case here, however. So, that’s a big tick for anyone into splash ‘n’ dash sailing – where time is of the essence – and you can’t be faffing about wrestling into a wetsuit.
Secondly is the warmth of the APOC. With its ‘heart warmer’ Thermalux Poly Fleece liner there’s no lacking in toasty feelings. The suit is also layered with the thickest neoprene around the corner that slow tapers to the body’s extremities where you’ll find the least amount of rubber. Then you have a well thought out, built in hood, which won’t choke off your air supply if it needs to be pulled back plus a flexi visor to reduce glare for good measure.
Another check is for flexibility. Windsurfing, as we all know, is a mobile sport. Anything that hinders this isn’t going to be welcome. Fortunately, the APOC grips skin but allows freedom of movement. Even the most extreme contortionist (such as new school freestyle rippers) will find favour. Ride Engine state on their website the APOC is a little like slipping into a comfortable onesie. On that point we concur.
Lastly, riders will be glad to know the suit is very robust and durable. Scratting around shingly beaches is a good test of a product’s resistance to knocks/scrapes, hence why WSUK HQ’s backyard is good testing grounds. After a few high tide drillings up the beach Ride Engine’s APOC is still in one piece, going strong, and then some.
With a whole bunch of innovative, top-shelf products, Ride Engine deliver the goods with their hooded APOC winter wetsuit. More than capable of coping with foul weather it’s actually more versatile than that, allowing for use around the harshest of conditions. Plus, it’s applicable to multi-sports as well – not just windsurfing. Time to suit up!