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It almost feels like cheating.
While we understand the intended meaning of 'free speed,' we're resolute in our understanding that nothing is free. However, without sounding crass, speed can be bought within the realm of triathlon. And since 2XU launched its Project X wetsuits in 2010, this has become a well-documented fact. Furthering this welcomed truth is the second iteration of this ground-breaking line, the X:2 Project X Wetsuit. With it, 2XU advances past technologies into race-ready wetsuits for today's level of competition.
The path to speed takes many forms, and accordingly, the path to a faster wetsuit requires many engineering features. So, 2XU approached the X:2 with a four-part ideology -- body position, flexibility hydrodynamics, and buoyancy. Coincidentally, much of 2XU's engineering towards body position also aids in buoyancy. And accordingly, the X:2 ensures an efficient body position through the development and implementation of its velocity strakes and rollbar technologies. Basically, the velocity strakes are strategically placed and angled points of 5mm raised surface that run from the neck to the knee. These strakes perform many functions, but one of their more notable applications is improving posture in the water, or more precisely put, they efficiently channel water along the body in order to increase your stability and flow. This results in less sideways movement in choppy conditions, and also, it provides an enhanced lift to the body in glassy waters. The rollbars that run along the sides from the hip to the top of scapula operate with the same principle -- minimizing the shoulder and lats tendency to sink inwards during the locomotion of your stroke.
Surely, the aforementioned system of position control sounds right on paper, but you're probably wondering what its real-world application is? Well, aside from proprioceptive dynamics, it also brings us to our next subject, hydrodynamics. Basically, the X:2's goal is to make you faster in the water. And just as curvy, sleek shapes minimize your drag coefficient on land, the wetsuit's level of buoyancy is the minimizing variable in the water. The supporting science behind this claim is fairly elementary -- water is around 1000 times denser than air, and it produces a potential drag coefficient 10 times that of air, as well. So, minimizing your body's submergence is vital to optimizing hydrodynamics. Accordingly, the X:2 features a 5mm front panel from the neck to knee -- the maximum thickness allowed under IFR. This neoprene segment also has the highest available cell density, 40 cell rubber, for the greatest level of buoyancy in the triathlon market. Additionally, the X:2 benefits from a Nano SCS coating that provides an added 4% of buoyancy over standard SCS, while lowering the suit's coefficient of kinetic friction to 0.026, compared to an untreated neoprene's coefficient of 4.0. Without entering into a physics lesson, the coefficient of kinetic friction is most simply described as the ratio of the force of friction between two bodies, and the force pressing them together. And in this case, the two bodies are your body and the water and friction occurs concurrently with their motions. So, in the real-world, Nano SCS acts almost like an accelerant as it reduces the friction between yourself and the water, ultimately requiring you to exert less force in order to gain more speed.
So, we've discerned how the X:2 design assists in conserving your energy by lowering your required output of force. But, the X:2 also has features that maximize the force that you apply. For example, 2XU equipped the forearms and lower legs with its propulsion panels. These sections of the suit provide the appendages with a drastically increased surface area. So, with the panels, more water is displaced during your catch and kick phase. Accordingly, your propulsion through the water is maximized with less required force. And for further efficiency, 2XU varied the propulsion panels' density from 1mm on the inner to 5mm on the outer portions.
And to support the aforementioned movements, 2XU made the X:2 its most flexible suit to date. The Yamamoto 40 cell neoprene is not only buoyant, but it also features the most flexible rubber composition on the market. Furthermore, like the propulsion panels, the entire X:2 suit has a varied density -- a vital component to articulation. Along these lines, the X:2 has a minimal, 1.5mm density on the underarm and lateral panels, 2mm on the shoulders, and 3mm on the lower legs. Additionally, the front panel utilizes 2XU's ultra-flexible, triple-buoyancy, and seamless X-Flex technology. So, you'll find that your efficiency will be further increased by the panel's directing of an effective body roll and flex throughout your swim. Rounding out the suit's flexibility is its floating zip panel. Whereas most zip closures tighten and pull at the lateral, arm, and shoulder panels when closed, the X:2's zipper lies on its own panel. So, when its closed, the suit's material isn't pulled in towards the zipper teeth. Thus, every aspect of your motion has been accounted for and guaranteed by the X:2.
The 2XU X:2 Project X Women's Wetsuit is available in the color Black and in five sizes from X-Small to X-Large, with a Small/medium option also available.