Arena Powerskin Carbon Pro Mark 2 Jammer


Arena's Carbon Pro MK2 Jammer is their latest, high-end suit and is being used by many top-flight swimmers.

This suit is newly-released to comply with FINA regulations and has new color selections. Pricey but well worth a look.


The Arena Powerskin Carbon Pro Jammer is the latest entry in the high-stakes battle by the company, following the banning of their fully polyurethane “X-Glide” after the 2009 World Championships. Their new suits were worn by many of the high-profile swimmers and sprinters, including Rebecca Soni and Eric Shanteau at the 2012 London Olympics.

Unlike the full-body “X-Slide” Arena’s new jammer is biker-shorts length. The suit is constructed of stiff carbon fibers combined with elastomer, which allows the material to stretch. This combination of materials are woven together to create, according to Arena, an unprecedented compression of the muscles, allowing the wearer to perform better, especially when they would usually start to tire. While the suit has a snug fit, it doesn’t squeeze the muscles hard enough to affect performance negatively. In the past athletes needed to choose whether they wanted comfort without compression, or muscle compression with compromised freedom of movement. Arena claims that the Powerskin Carbon Pro Jammer makes this decision obsolete, combining both benefits in one suit. No longer does the swimmer need to decide between these two features.

Not only is the new Arena suit better at providing mobility and compression at the same time, but the carbon fibers make it stronger and less likely to tear or get damaged while putting it on. The fact that it doesn’t easily tear or fray means that the surface remains smooth longer than normal jammers, which reduces drag and keeps the surface waterproof, unlike other low- mid-range suits, which have a tendency to feel stiff and can soak up water. The weight of the suit has been tested to have the perfect strength to weight ratio for the best possible power and speed.

Arena chose carbon because it is the most important element in our lives. Almost 20 percent of our body is carbon, which means that only oxygen is more plentiful. Carbon is found everywhere in the universe and is the most important ingredient in a number of important things in nature, including DNA and eye lenses. It has the ability to bond to elements that aren’t metal, which makes it unlike other metals and has led most scientists to call it the essential building block of life.

The Arena Powerskin Carbon Pro Jammer is the first competition swimsuit to utilize carbon in its design for a truly revolutionary set of features. The combination of materials that make up the suit allow the swimmer or sprinter to move freely while the muscles remain compressed to vastly improve performance. While swimming’s regulatory bodies continue to limit the materials and designs allowed for competition swimwear, the advances that Arena has come up with should change the world of swimming now and well into the future.

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Ratings & Reviews

Do you own this suit? If so, please rate it below and share your thoughts.

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Hydro Repellency
Rating: 8.5/10 (47 votes cast)


  • Tide Swimmin' (#)
    September 3rd, 2012

    Nice suit. A little pricey but I’m a lifelong Arena wearer and this is their best suit ever, IMHO.

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    Rating: 5.0/5 (2 votes cast)
  • Nervous Buyer (#)
    February 11th, 2013

    If im a 26 in a normal suit, should i buy one size smaller for this race suit, or has the carbon fiber eliminated the need to go a size down?

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    Rating: 2.5/5 (2 votes cast)
  • Penn Swimming (#)
    February 18th, 2013

    FIT: Got this suit as a member of Penn’s D1 Swimming and Diving team. First of all, the suit runs a size smaller than other tech suits. Regardless, the suit took an incredibly long time to get on with a correct size because the fabric doesn’t stretch at all. The glue marks on the bonded seams also looked as if they might have started to wear off a bit after the first wear.

    HYDRO REPELLENCY: I’m not convinced the suit has the best repellency. A sign of good water repellency is the silvery sheen that you see on suits when you hop in. For the Carbon Pro, it seems as if only certain parts of the suit, primarily the bottom portion of the suit near the kneecaps, would repel water and show that silvery sheen in the pool. The rest of the suit didn’t seem to do as well of a job at repelling water as, say a LZR Elite would have.

    COMPRESSION: The Carbon Pro brags a lot about being very compressive yet unrestricting. In some respects, this is certainly true. Compression is great. Pushing off the wall and doing underwaters feels great. However, I am primarily a breaststroker and I will say that this suit will definitely restrict your groin/hip range of motion. It feels super unnatural and difficult to get a full breaststroke kick in, especially if you are used to practicing in a brief.

    VALUE: Worst aspect of the suit in my opinion. In the end, it’s all good marketing and flashy appearance. The suit has only a 1% carbon make-up. The rest of it is no different from any other compressive tech suit out there. Compared to the $200 TYR AP12, it’s identical. You can tell from the placement of the bonded seams (exactly the same) and the feel of the suit (same compression and repellency technology). The $350 price tag is only held up by endorsements from multiple top-tier athletes who receive the suit for free, a super well-done advertising campaign by Arena (all those shiny new colors!), and a suit that supposedly utilizes a new type of technology – carbon (the grid-like pattern has to be doing something besides looking cool, right??), which is ultimately used way too little to make a true difference.

    The suit is a solid one, but won’t help you any more (and may even be worse than) the Speedo LZR Elite and TYR AP12. Not worth it in my opinion. Keep in mind that I got this suit for free as a DI team and this is a completely unbiased review that’s trying to help YOU out.

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    Rating: 4.2/5 (5 votes cast)
    • Stan (#)
      March 9th, 2013

      Hi, I’ll have to agree with the Penn Swimming reviewer’s comments, which are accurate and should be taken seriously by any prospective buyer. The Arena Carbon Pro definitely is smaller in size. A size 28 Arena has a waist diameter of 11″. A Blue Nero 70 in size 28 has a 13 inch waist. So if the Nero 70 size 28 fits you, the Arena size 28 won’t. You won’t be able to get into it even if you have thin hips and thighs. And the seams do look a bit frayed even on the suit unworn.

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      Rating: 4.0/5 (4 votes cast)
  • Indiana Swimming (#)
    July 18th, 2016

    I use a size 24 TYR Tracer Light. Should I size up or not?

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    Rating: 0.0/5 (0 votes cast)

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