Tech Suits - Everything You Need To Know

Try-ons, Refunds, Exchanges, & Returns

All tech suit sales are final both in our brick-and-mortar locations and on line. There is a high risk to damage with these suits when being handled and tried-on, even by skilled hands, and therefor back on March, 13th 2020 we chose to update our refunds and exchanges policy to reflect more what is becoming the industry standard and no longer allow try-ons or exchanges/returns of these items. 

We highly recommend that you take your time using the manufacture provided sizing charts when ordering a suit and that you contact us with any questions before placing you order. 

If you have any questions about our Exchanges and Refunds Policy you can follow the link to that page or you can contact us. 


Sale Tech Suits - Older Tried-On Suits

Before March 13, 2020 we had a open tech suit try-on policy. Meaning that our customers were allowed to try-on the tech suits that they were interested in before purchasing them. We did not and still do not use a size kit for tech suits. It was very unusual for a customer to not purchase the suit that they tried-on. 

What that means is that some of our older inventory of tech suit that we had in stock before the policy change may have been tried on once or twice before. We still follow the industry standard of how a suit is defined as new - meaning that a suit is considered a new suit so long as it has never been worn in the water. All of our tech suits are new by that definition. 

If you would like to know if a suit that you are interested in purchasing may have been tried-on by someone else you can contact us before you place your order. We will be happy to check the suit in question to see if it's possibly been tried on once or if it's in mint condition (never been tried on, may have had the box opened to examine the color of the suit). 

The suits that would fall under this category will be our sale/clearance out suits that have been primarily discontinued by the manufactures. Examples of those possible suits are: 

  • Arena Carbon Air
  • Arena Carbon Flex VX
  • Arena Carbon Ultra
  • Dolfin Titanium 
  • Finis Rival
  • Speedo LZR Pro
  • Speedo LZR Elite 
  • Speedo LZR X


How to Put on a Tech Suit 

The following are step by step instructions for putting on technical suits. We want you to get the most bang for your buck both by getting into the suit all the way and by putting on the proper size, so we recommend that you follow them to the letter. 

All of these steps were developed by our managers, Melanie and Kenzie, using tricks that they picked up both from when Kenzie was racing in them and from over customers over the years. Both Melanie and Kenzie have been working with technical suits since 2008; they have years of experience behind them. 

If you have any questions at all regarding technical suits feel free to contact us

  • Take your time putting the suit on. It can take up to an hour for the first time you ever try on a tech suit. They do become easier as you figure out how to slip your body into them
  • Fold up the hem of the legs. This is done to keep the gripping silicone away from your skin so that you can slide the material up and into place easily. 
  • Carefully accordion bunch the suit up into a single bundle. This is done to protect the suit and give you a bigger area to grip on the initial stepping into and pulling up. You want to keep the seems straight and the bunches even so that the suit doesn't twist and fold over on it's self as you pull it up. If this happens you will need to take the suit off and try again, because there is no way to straighten the suit once you have it on. 
  • Pull the suit up as high on your legs as you possibly can in one unit. Think pulling on a pair of tights. The higher you can wiggle it up as a unit the easier it will be later on. 
  • Hook one of your fingers under the hem of the leg and wiggle it up to as close to mid thigh as you can. The higher you can get the hem of the leg the more you will have to work with when getting the suit over your butt and the easier that will be. You will pull the legs back down and into their proper position after the top of the suit is in place. 
  • Getting the suit over the butt is the hardest part. Once you manage that you are home free.
    • Pull the suit up to your hipsYou will need to stop pulling on the suit as a unit at this point and need to work in incremental pinch and pulls. You will need to pinch a part of the material that is looser lower down and pull it up, then pinch a little above that new placement and pull again, repeating this until you've worked the material up to your hips. 
    • Once you have a bunch of material under your butt cheeks you will have to tuck your butt into the suit. The best way to do this is to find a strong point of the suit in the back. That will be right on the center butt seam. DO NOT PINCH NEXT TO THE SEAM BUT RIGHT ON IT. Pinch that strong point, seam, between your thumb and forefinger with one hand. Your free hand will need to push your butt cheeks into your body as the hand that is gripping the suits pulls it up and over your butt cheeks. Once your butt is in, even a little bit, you're good. 
    • If your suit has straps you can get them out of your way by pulling the straps up and over your butt and hips and have them sit on your waist as you work your butt into the suit. 
    • Once your butt is in you can pinch pull the suit up and too your waist. You will need to work in a spiral pattern around your body; meaning that you will need to pinch up the front, then the right side, then the left side, and then the butt. Following this pattern will make sure that the suit gets pulled up evenly. 
    • If the suit gets stuck on your hips you will need to cross your feet and squeeze your legs. This will compress your body just enough for you to be able to slip the suit over your hip bones. 
  • Once the suit is to your waist you will need to hike the crotch up as high as you can get it to give you a full range of motion in your legs. 
  • If your suit has a draw string: You can now secure the suit by tying the draw string. After that you can pull the hem of the legs down and into place, securing the legs by flipping the hem down and into place. 
  • If your suit has straps: DO NOT pull the legs down yet. You need to secure the suit via the straps first. 
  • Not pulling on the straps - pull the suit up your torso. You can do this by gripping the suit as a unit again, much like you did at the start, and wiggling it up your torso. You will want to get your chest fully into the suit and the strap that goes across your back up as high as you can before you pull the straps on your shoulders. 
  • Pull the straps onto your shoulders one strap at a time. You will want to pull the strap away from your body using the opposite hand, slide the arm that is going into the strap hand first into the strap hole and down the side of your body, carefully dip your shoulder and pull the strap up your arm and into place. Repeat on the other arm. 
  • Situate the top of your suit. Here is where you will make any adjustments to the suit in order for your chest and the straps to be comfortably situated in the suit. 
  • Once the suit is in place, pull the legs down and uncuff the hem. 

If you have any questions on how to take care of your tech suits you can find the answers in our FAQ section.


How to Take Care of a Tech Suit

The following are step by step instructions for taking care of your technical suits. We want you to get the most bang for your buck so we recommend that you follow them to the letter. 

All of these steps were developed by our managers, Melanie and Kenzie, using tricks that they picked up both from when Kenzie was racing in them and from other customers over the years. Both Melanie and Kenzie have been working with technical suits since 2008; they have years of experience behind them. 

If you have any questions at all regarding technical suits feel free to contact us

  • Take your time putting the suit on.
    • For proper technique please refer to our guide that you can find on our FAQ Page.
  • We recommend that you warm up in the suit for two reasons:
    1. It protects the suit because you won't be rushing with damp skin to get it on before your race. When you are rushing you are more likely to pull to hard on a weak point of the suit and rip it. Not to mention that the suit will stick to damp skin making it about 10 times harder to pull on. 
    2. Compression, the main reason why these suits are fast. The reason being that it basically smooshes, compresses, your muscle tissues closer together. When that happens it traps oxygen in those tissues. This both reduces lactic acid creation as well as increases potential performance. Meaning that more oxygen equals less burning and quicker reactions. Every time you warm up and cool down you are increasing the oxygen flow in your blood and circulating it through your muscles. By already having that compression in place you start trapping that oxygen sooner. 


  • Keep the suit protected during the meet. 
    • Wear drag shorts, drag tights, or a practice suit over your tech suit while you warm up and cool down. 
    • Wear shorts, sweats, t-shirts, parkas, basically anything to cover the suit while you wait between races. We don't want it to snag on anything. 
    • DO NOT take the suit off and put it back on in between races. The more you take it on and off the more it stretches out. 
    • DO NOT pull the straps off your shoulders and wear them around your torso/waist between races. This stretches out the straps and neck of the suit faster and makes it easier for water to get down and inside your suit. 
      • Tip: The straps only start to hurt because they are dry and pulling on your chlorine super dry skin. When they start hurting that means you have been sitting out of the water for to long (this can take an hour or two to happen) get back in and re-warm up at least 200 yards. This will get your suit and skin wet again and cause the straps to stop tugging on your puckering skin. It will also benefit your performance by bringing more oxygen to your muscles. 
  • Race in the suit wet
    • When the suit dries on your skin micro air bubbles form. These become apparent when you jump back into the water. They can stretch the suit and also allow a pocket for water to get in between you and the suit creating drag. 
    • Get the suit we and run your hands all over the suit. This will stick the suit to your skin and remove all of those air bubbles. 
  • After you are done competing for the day
    • Rinse the suit in the shower with fresh water. Try to keep shampoo and soaps off the suit as best you can. You want to rinse the suit on your body so that you don't create stretch pockets from the force of the sink faucet. You need to have the suit exposed to fresh water for at least 10-15 minutes to get all the chlorine out. 
    • Peel the suit off your body slowly. It will come off much faster and easier when it goes on, but we still want to try to not stretch it out. 
    • DO NOT ring the suit out or try to get water off of it in any way (dryers and spinners are an instant death to a tech suit). It will stretch the suit and damage the material. 
    • Lay the suit flat on a towel and roll the suit up inside the towel. DO NO bunch the suit up. 
    • KEEP YOUR EYES ON THE SUIT AT ALL TIMES. They are very easily stolen in locker-rooms. 
  • Once you get home
    • Take the suit out of the towel you rolled it up in.
    • Lay a fresh and dry towel on a flat surface (floor or table). 
    • Lay the suit flat on the dry towel and let it air dry completely. 
    • Fold the suit up and store it in a ventilated bag or box for safe keeping until your next meet. 


12u Compliant Tech Suit Rule Explained

Tech suit restrictions of 12 and under swimmers takes full effect everywhere in the USA September 1, 2020. 

The rule states that no technical suit may be worn by any 12 and under USA Swimming athlete in a competition. 

The main question here is, "What is the definition of a tech suit in this rule?"

  • A Technical Suit is any suit with any bonded or taped seams regardless of its fabric or silhouette or any suit with woven fabric extending past the hips

What this basically means is:

  • If a 12 and under swimmer wants to wear a suit with legs (female short john or male jammer) that suit must have stitched seams and be a knit fabric. 
  • If a 12 and under swimmer wants to wear a woven fabric suit then that suit must be in a female regular cut or a male brief. Woven suits in those styles may have bonded seams. 

If you want to play it super safe then your 12 and under swimmer can't wear any suits with legs. 

If you want your 12 and under swimmer to be in a suit with legs then that suit must have stitched seams and be a knit fabric. 

The two most common knit fabrics are polyester and lycra and suits made out of those materials have stitched seams. 

Buying a suit with a stitched seam is your best rule of thumb when shopping for a racing suit for your 12 and under swimmer. This is because the vast majority of woven suits don't have stitched seams. 

We make shopping for 12 and under compliant suits super easy. All of our tech suits that are compliant with this rule say so in the description of the suit in question. 


12u Compliant Tech Suit "Green Checkmark"

Shortly before USA Swimming adopted the 12u technical suit rule there was a proposal (we can't find any literature that supports that is was fully adopted into a rule) that all 12u compliant technical suits be marked by a "Green Checkmark" logo next to the "FINA Approved" logo. This would make it easier for officials to confirm that the suit is compliant to the rule. A tech suit can be 12u compliant and not have the "Green Checkmark" logo. USA Swimming has produced a list of compliant makes and models of tech suits. The best way to know if your tech suit is compliant to this rule is by checking the make and model and/or the FINA serial number of your suit against that list. The FINA serial number is the number under the QR code on the "FINA Approved" logo. 

USA Swimming did put out an official memo about compliant tech suits without the "Green Checkmark":

What happens is a suit is legal, but doesn't have the checkmark?

Even though we have promoted the upcoming change, there may be instances where a parent purchased an older stock suit that had the FINAL approval logo on it but does not have the checkmark on it because a dealer had older stock of the suit or your child is in an adult and not youth size. In this instance, the "work around" will be: 

    1. USA Swimming will have a list of these suits on the website. Currently there are 12 that have been approved (some suits have a child size and an adult size). 
    2. Swimmer or coach takes the suit to the meet referee prior to the start of the meet (should a swimmer arrive late the swimmer must have the suit approved prior to their event). 
    3. The tag on the suit has the name of the suit on it (the FINA serial number and QR code) and the referee can compare that with the list on the website. 
    4. Referee with a green Sharpie, places an "X" over the FINAL approval logo. 
    5. It is up to the simmer and/or coach to have this approved prior to them swimming the race. 

This will help in the "rare" instance where a parent purchased a suit that is legal but does not have the checkmark on it due to older stock or sizing of the suit. Unfortunately, there is nothing to prevent a coach, swimmer, or parent from putting an "X" on the suit with their own Sharpie. We must trust that no one would do this. 

This official "workaround" is why Poco Loco Swim Shop recommends that swimmers, coaches, and parents print off a copy of that guideline and a copy of the USA Swimming approved list and keep them with them for every swim meet if they purchase a legal model that does not have the "Green Checkmark." We also recommend that you follow this guideline and have your suit verified by the meet referee at every meet that the suit is worn at and not trusting the green Sharpie "X" after the first time that it was marked. We also recommend that meet referee's keep track of which swimmers have verified tech suits much in the same way that you would special needs swimmers and their ADA allotments or how high school officials keep track of taping.