What to wear on a jet ski? – It’s a typical question for many beginners in the world of jet skiing.
You may think that you will need only a swimsuit and that’s all. In fact, you will need specific clothes and accessories which will keep you protected and legal.
Wearing the proper jet ski clothes can keep you safe from several injuries! Because of this, it’s essential to look overall of the available gear and choose what works best for you.
If you have doubts about whether wearing specific clothes and protective gear on a jet ski is important or not, just take a look at the warning messages on a jet ski or in your owner’s manual!
The manufacturers strongly recommend this list of the most important jet ski clothes and accessories, at a minimum:
- Life jackets
What’s more, life jackets for the operator and all passengers are required by law in every state!
As you see, you will need considerably more clothes and gear than just a swimsuit.
We at JetDrift have collected the best picks in each category, as well as for some other clothes and accessories which can assist you on the water.
Without further ado, let’s see what to wear on a jet ski!
What to wear on a jet ski – CHART
Beyond the manufacturer’s recommendations, we have collected the most commonly used jet ski clothes and accessories in the chart below.
If you are interested in a category, don’t hesitate to read more. You can learn more about each of these important accessories and see why they are essential on the water!
|Jet ski clothes|
|Wet suit / Dry Suit|
|Shoes / Boots|
|Goggles and Sunglasses|
|Dry Bags / Boxes|
Jet Ski Life Jackets
Jet ski life jackets (known as Personal Flotation Devices,or PDFs) are always the most important jet ski accessory. Regardless of your swimming skills, you have to wear one every time you ride a jet ski!
If you fall off your jet ski, a life jacket helps you to swim back to the craft easier. On the other hand, if you have an accident, it will keep you afloat in the water.
Life jackets are not just highly recommended by the manufacturers,
but are alsorequired by the law in every state.
You and your passengers have to wear United States Coast Guard- approved life jackets on your jet ski rides at alltimes!
The best life jackets are definitely the neoprene kinds, as these models are the most convenient ones as well as really slim and stylish at the same time.
Regular usage in the sun can ruin your life jacket, so it’s wise to purchase a new one every 4-5 years. If you are wondering about other required jet ski safety equipment, don’t hesitate to discover them all here.
Jet Ski Wetsuits and Drysuits
Jet Ski Wetsuits
Surprisingly, according to owner’s manuals, wetsuits are just as important as life jackets.
To understand the importance of wetsuits, you should take a short look at how the jet ski engine and pump work. To summarize the process, water comes out from the rear- end of the jet ski very fast in order to push it through the water.
If a jet ski rider falls off backwards, this high-pressure squirting water can be forced into body cavities such as the rectum or vagina. This can result in serious injury or even death! Although there is a risk, it happens very rarely.
Yes, this is not a pleasant topic to talk about, but if you open any jet ski owner’s manual, you will find this warning in all of them.
You may be wondering what to wear on a jet ski to avoid accidents like this. According to the manufacturer’s recommendations, wetsuit bottoms offer the best protection. Jet ski wetsuits arrive in many shapes and styles, so you can choose one based on your needs. Beyond this protection, they can also keep you warm on chilly days.
If you live in a warmer climate, you might consider a shorty wetsuit. These models go down only to your elbows and mid-legs, which means you can get them on more easily.
The other typical design is the full body wetsuit which covers the full length of your arms and legs. The drawback is that pulling on and taking off this suit is a little trickier.
In general, jet ski wetsuits offer protection for you as well as better warmth, which means you can have longer seasons if you invest in a proper wetsuit!
Jet Ski Drysuits
If you live in the north, or would like to ride your jet ski in cold weather, jet ski drysuits are best for you! These special suits keep the water out, and they are usually designed for lower temperatures.
This means these jet ski clothes can keep you completely dry and warm so you can ride on the cold days as well!
Jet Ski Shoes
The other manufacturer’s recommendation is having the proper jet ski shoes. In spite of this, when it comes to jet ski clothes, footwear is still a commonly overlooked accessory.
You can see many riders wearing slippers on their jet skis. This is the worst idea fora jet ski as your foot can slip much easier in them.
Wearing slippers or riding barefoot are absolutely not recommended on a jet ski!
It’s best if you consider getting a pair of good jet ski shoes. They can protect your feet from accidents while you’re riding or beaching. Rocks, shells, or other sharp objects can injure your feet!
For warm days, you can find really lightweight and breathable jet ski shoes that still offer the proper protection and grip.
If you are looking for footwear for the chilly days, you can choose from several good jet ski boots on the market. They are much warmer and more durable than the regular jet ski shoes. If you’ve decided to go with a dry suit, jet ski boots are the best additions to them!
Jet Ski Gloves
When you compile your list of jet ski clothes, don’t forget to add a pair of riding gloves as well. It’s clear that jet ski gloves are not essential, but you can take good advantage of them. Jet ski gloves are especially useful to beginners who are prone to clenching the handles so hard, it may lead to blisters on their thumbs and fingers.
Jet ski gloves don’t just prevent blisters, but they also offer extra grip, and protect your hands while you launch or anchor your craft. That’s why gloves are among the most recommended jet ski accessories in every owner’s manual!
What’s more, they can keep your hands warm and prevent sunburn. You can enjoy their benefits especially on long trips or when you fish from your jet ski.
Which are the best jet ski gloves? Well, it really depends on your needs. If you ride in warm weather, the best models are the fingerless, fast-drying, breathable models.
On cold days, you may want something warmer. Neoprene jet ski gloves arrive typically in 3 mm and 5 mm styles; these models can keep your hands much warmer.
Just like on motorbikes, gloves are essential jet ski accessories in the cold weather for every rider!
Jet Ski Goggles and Sunglasses
The other key point highlighted in every owner’s manual is suitable eye protection.
Sun, bright water, wind, water spray or bugs in the air can all damage your eyes, or just interfere with your vision, which can lead to a serious accident. Due to these dangers, eye protection is a must for every jet ski rider.
If you wear sunglasses right now, they can even do the job. But it’s good to know that there is always a chance you can lose them during your rides.
Due to potential loss, you may want floating sunglasses, which are best if you combine them with a floating eyeglass chain as well. The other solution is jet ski goggles which are specially designed for jet ski riders.
Even if eye protection doesn’t seem essential for your first ride, don’t overlook it. Beyond the clothes, don’t forget to get floating sunglasses/goggles!
Jet Ski Helmets
Event hough jet ski helmets are not required by law, they would make sense for jet ski riders in some cases.
For example, in competitions, you can see that every rider wears a helmet, and with good reason. Protection of the head is very important, and just like in other motorsports competitons, jet ski racingis dangerous as well.
You may bewondering; if you’re a recreational rider, does it make sense to wear a jet ski helmet?
The answer is yes, but it strongly depends on your watercraft, your riding style, and the weather conditions.
If you have a powerful watercraft or even a stand-up jet ski and like doing tricks like wave jumping or backflips, it’s highly recommended you wear a helmet. If you land wrong after a huge jump, you can hit your head on the handlebars. A good full-face jet ski helmet is always the best protection for your head and jaw.
Additionally, you can mount your action camera and goggles on the helmet, and it can keep your head warm on the cold days.
Sunscreen vs. Rash Guards
We all know that protection from the sun is essential, especially on a jet ski.
On those hot days on the water, your skin is more exposed to the direct and indirect sunlight more so than during other outdoor activities. One of the most common ways to get sun protection is with sunscreens. If you choose a sunscreen, consider one with SPF (sun protection factor) 30 or higher.
You don’t like sunscreens and their mess and hassle? Don’t worry. You’re not alone.
The good news is that several good rash guards are available on the market, as alternatives to sunscreens. What are rash guards?
Rash guards are a special kind of jet ski clothes which look like an athletic shirt and which are made of nylon, polyester or spandex. They can protect you from the damaging UV rays, as well as keeping you warm from the wind.
So, if you don’t like sunscreen, then rash guards are definitely for you.
Other Jet Ski Clothes
These additional items are not specifically jet ski clothes, but it never hurts to have some of them with you on the water.
Jet ski masks
Masks are popular again when it comes to riding long distances or in cold weather. There are soft textile or neoprene masks in countless styles and shapes. The two most popular designs are the simple face masks which can be used as a scarf or cap as well. The other popular design is the full face mask which offers really good protection, especially when combined with jet ski goggles.
The other jet ski mask alternatives are the hard riding masks which have the lens attached to them.
For protection from the sun, you can consider a hat or cap. Unfortunately, baseball-style caps don’t usually work as the wind blows them off. Try to find a hat with cord that can keep your hat on your head during your rides.
Rain coats/surf jackets
Not for everyday rides, but sometimes if you get caught in bad weather, you can make good use of them. They can also be an alternative to dry suits to a certain extent.
It’s always wise to keep a smaller towel in your storage compartment. You’ll be surprised in how many cases you’ll need it. Beyond the towel, a few dry clothes never hurt as well.
Just like jet ski fishing, riders often combine snorkeling and jet skiing. If you like snorkeling, it’s not a bad idea keep a snorkel set, or just a dive-mask on board.
Even though a jet ski’s storage compartments are marketed as waterproof places, let’s face it, most of them seem rather semi-waterproof. Because of this, if you want to keep your items dry on your jet ski, you definitely need a dry bag. You can store your wallet, keys, phone and many other important things in them.
Takeaways – The Best Jet Ski Clothes
As you can see, picking the proper jet ski clothes is essential to staying safe and legal on the water.
The most important item you will need is definitely the life jacket, whichis required by law.
Beyond that there are several essential clothes which are recommended by most of the PWC manufacturers. These are the wet suits, shoes, gloves and goggles or sunglasses.
According to the owner’s manuals, these are considered the most important jet ski clothes on the water.
If you’re looking for more protection or comfort, you can choose from countless jet ski helmets, masks, rash guards and many other useful accessories. It seems you can spend a considerable amount on these items, but they’reworth every penny. Safety is always the most important rule on the water.
And don’t forget, beyond the necessary gear, you’ll have to count inthe other 8 main jet ski-owning costs as well. Don’t hesitate to discover all of them!
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