Open Back v/s Closed Back Swimsuits: Which is better for competitive swimming?

Competitive swimming is heavily influenced by the type of swimsuit you wear. But being a woman has its own share of advantages. You can choose from a horde of functional designs in the open and closed back category.

There aren’t many differentiating factors that set a particular swimsuit apart from another one. It’s a question of the support it offers. The visual style is often secondary unless it directly influences your body’s movements and the support.  

There are plenty of suit styles but swimsuits are largely categorized into two:

  1. Open back swimsuits
  2. Closed back swimsuits

These swimsuits mean exactly what their names hint. Open back style is for open back (backless) suits and closed back style for the closed back suits.

Open Back Style vs. Closed Back Style Swimsuit

As mentioned before, it’s a question of support. For that, competitive swimmers must focus on the straps of the swimsuits.

Thin straps and wide straps, both offer a differing extent of support and depending on your personal you can make the choice.

Thin Suit Straps

Incredibly famous among the modern crowd, thin strap back swimsuits offer a minimalist design and sufficient support where it’s needed.      

  1. Thin straps cover less and are more revealing so if you are concerned about the exposure to your skin and body, they might not be a great choice for you.
  2. They are not as supportive as wider straps. They are designed keeping in mind the support needed for swim practice and flatter bodies. Curvy swimmers need extra support which the thin straps might not offer.
  3. Thanks to the design, thin straps are much more comfortable than the wider ones.
  4. Some swimmers prefer open back, thin straps as it allows better feel while swimming and better activity with more movement to change positions.  
  5. Thin straps equal minimal tan lines.  

Wide Strap Suits

Wide strap swimsuits are a mainstream choice as they have been traditionally famous in the competitive swimming crowd. Thanks to the width, the straps offer higher support. Closed back locks the suit on the body so it doesn’t lead to any faux pas and swimmers feel more secure when shifting positions and flipping.  

  1. Wider straps offer more coverage so if you particularly conscious about showing too much skin, they are for you.
  2. They are definitely more supportive and are great for curvy swimmers.  
  3. Wide strap suits aren’t very comfortable for long sessions and tight fits may even result in rub marks.  

Swimsuits with closed back and wide straps are best reserved for competitions while thin straps and open backs work great for practice.

Speedo offers a wide range of competitive swimwear for women. But before you settle on a design and invest in a swimsuit, consider comfort, flexibility, and support above aesthetics.

Word to the wise: Keep trying different back styles unless you find the one that gives you complete freedom of movement without causing any faux pas.

Always keep a backup of different back swimsuits and go with what your figure suggests.

To know about swimming trunks for men, read our blog.