Scottish wave pool to use plant-based wetsuit fleet

Lost Shore has acquired 700 Yulex wetsuits in various sizes for its guests, marking the largest plant-based wetsuit fleet globally of any surf park. The wave pool at Lost Shore, set to open near Edinburgh in September, expects over 160,000 surfers annually to utilize the eco-friendly product.

The resort’s team collaborated with Edinburgh Napier University for their Surf Lab initiative, conducting research on wetsuits’ performance and materials to ensure user comfort and warmth. Tests involved immersing a surfer in ice-cold water while monitoring body temperatures with Gul’s Yulex wetsuit emerging as the top performer.

Yulex foam, a renewable plant-based material, significantly reduces carbon emissions compared to synthetic rubbers like neoprene and geoprene, commonly used in wetsuits. The material is sourced from FSC® and PEFC® certified natural rubber plantations, which promote deforestation-free practices and fair compensation for smallholders.

Manufactured by British wetsuit company Gul, the 5/4mm thick Yulex wetsuits feature an anti-abrasion, hydrophobic, super stretch recycled nylon laminate.

“This sort of test is exactly why we set up Surf Lab and provided some really exciting results. We have a unique space helping Edinburgh Napier University become one of the leaders in surfing research,” said Dr Brendon Ferrier, co-founder and academic lead of Surf Lab. “Our wetsuit tests put the participant in an extreme environment to really put these products through their paces. The Gul Yulex suit performed the best across the different wetsuits that we tested.”

Dr Ferrier added that the team was impressed with how the Gul Yulex product kept higher temperatures at the lower back, which is attributed to a design which includes a high performance zip.

“Staying warm in the water is very important and surfers must always ensure that proper mitigations are in place, such as a high quality wetsuit,” said Dr Ferrier. “Our tests have provided Lost Shore Surf Resort with the information they need to use the best wetsuits that will keep surfers as warm and as comfortable as possible.”

Endless Surf 2023A