The open palm wetsuit mitt has been favoured amongst windsurfers forever. They suffer from forearm pump at the best of times, without adding gloves into the mix. For surfing, the open palm design simply does not work - it is pointless. Their hands are submerged a lot of the time, and then paddle with their hands.
When it comes to kitesurfing and winging though, the open palm design makes sense. Most of the cold comes from wind chill as opposed to being submerged. The open palm design protects your hands from wind chill while preventing the arm cramp that full gloves can cause.
It allows us to remove our fingers quickly if we want to do something fiddly - like mess around with a GoPro, or connect a leash etc.
Nobody likes wearing wetsuit gloves while they ride, but we find these to be the best compromise while the conditions are as baltic as they have been through the winter time. we're hoping to be through the worst of it now as we look towards Spring, but you can never tell when we're going to get snow or get caught in Hail storms in Northerly winds in the UK - having these gloves in our wetsuit bucket can save your bacon when the temperatures catch you out