HOW TO CHOOSE YOUR LIFEJACKET? 

Life jackets are essential for safe sailing. Make sure you understand the difference between a lifejacket and a buoyancy aid. Lifejackets must comply with a standard and should be chosen with great care.

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It’s essential to avoid any confusion between lifejackets and buoyancy aids as the latter only help with buoyancy and consequently wearers must be able to swim. Lifejackets enable the person to be turned over on to their back so they can breathe if they are unconscious.

STANDARDS

Every lifejacket sold in Europe must be compliant with the standard in force and bear the CE mark, proof that it has been tested and approved. Standards validate at least the buoyancy, indicated in Newton (N). Your lifejacket must be compliant with at least the 100 Newton standard and be equipped with a whistle and reflective strips to make it easier to locate you in case of an accident.

There is a difference between what we call the floating help jackets that are compliant with 50 Newton standard only and the life jackets. 

Below a little visual explanation:

TYPES OF JACKETS

There are two types of life jackets: foam and inflatable. They are equally as effective, but inflatable jackets are recommended for regular use, as they provide greater freedom of movement. Foam jackets are just as effective as inflatable jackets. There are numerous models that differ in terms of their fastening systems.

SIZES

In addition to choosing the type of jacket (foam or inflatable), you also need to take your weight into account. There are several sizes and it’s essential to choose the right size to ensure your jacket is as effective as possible.

Cécile

Watersports Specialist 

In order to lengthen the life of your jackets make sure you rinse them thoroughly after using them each time and then dry quickly. For inflatable models: remove the inflation system, rinse and then dry the jacket before replacing the inflation system.

Advice
The most important thing to think about before you go sailing is protecting yourself from the elements throughout the whole season. In other words, choosing the right clothing is extremely important! Check out our tips to help you choose your sailing clothes featuring the three-layer system.
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