One piece or Two piece Tri suit? 

We often get asked which is best; one piece or two piece triathlon suit. 

The main thing here, for us anyways, is to think about this in terms of the triathlon distance you will be racing. 

A lot will come down to personal preference but one of the main things will be the distance. 

We’re going to let you know how we see this and what we have raced in over the years depending on the distance. So please do feel free to leave your thoughts in the comments section at the bottom of the article.

What’s the difference?

A one piece triathlon suit is a single garment worn throughout the whole swim, bike and run stages of a triathlon. You in theory won’t need to take the garment off throughout your whole race. 

A two piece triathlon suit incorporates a singlet and a short. The benefit of a 2 piece is that you can remove the shorts easily and is preferred by most triathletes for the longer distance events. 

A one piece suit will in theory not create as much drag in the water whilst swimming and also on the bike. With it being a one piece design it should be more hydrodynamic and aerodynamic than a two piece suit. 

The 2 piece suit is the more comfortable of the 2 in our opinion and should be worn on a long distance race. If you’re not looking to finish in the top places then you want to make sure you’re as comfy as can be.

What triathlon suit for what distance?

Race ​​​​​Distance

Distance (KM)

Suit to Wear

Super Sprint

0.4 (swim), 10 (bike), 2.5 (run)

One Piece


0.75 (swim), 20 (bike), 5 (run)

One Piece


1.5 (swim), 40 (bike), 10 (run)

One Piece

Half Ironman

1.9 (swim), 90 (bike), 21.1 (run)

Two Piece

Ironman or Full Distance

3.8 (swim), 180 (bike), 42.2 (run)

Two Piece

The main thing you have to bear in mind with a longer race is how many times you will need the toilet. It might sound blunt, but pulling your one piece suit down to go on the toilet over and over again becomes a proper ballache.

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