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Need scuba gear, but have no Idea? Fear Not. Part 2: Fins

Fins

Scuba Gear : Fins (not flippers!)

Need scuba gear, but have no Idea? Fear Not.

Part 2: Fins (not flippers!)

Cost: €30-200

Scuba gear: Why do I need fins for? What do they do?

Fins allow our powerful leg muscles to propel us through the water extremely efficiently. Without fins it is extremely difficult to move in water as it is 800 more dense than air. The best advice that I can offer you is not to choose the cheapest option here – leg cramps, muscle fatigue and a thoroughly unenjoyable dives are just some of the risks.

What am I looking for?

Open heel fin

Scuba Gear: Rigid fins lead to lowered energy expenditures over a longer distance

Scuba Gear Fins: Efficient or flexible?

As with most scuba gear, comfort and a good fit are paramount. Efficiency is also a good thing to look out for – as more efficient fins lead to lowered energy expenditures over a longer distance. More meters per kick is a good thing, especially in areas of high current. High efficiency fins however use a stiffer material and are often larger and heavier – meaning those of us who are slightly smaller in size often opt for a more flexible fin blade. Flexibility vs efficiency is a debate best resolved by your own body and preferences.

Stiff, efficient fins are better for frog kicking. They are good for more advanced propulsion techniques such as helicopter kicks or finning backwards. More flexible fins are perfect for the flutter kick and are perfect for those who are new to diving, smaller in size or for areas of low current.

fin pocket fin

Scuba Gear: Full foot fins perfect for warmer waters and boat diving

Scuba Gear Fins: Full foot or Open Heel?

Full foot fins do not require a separate boot and are perfect for warmer waters. They are also perfect for boat diving when you do not have to walk over any rugged terrain to enter the water. In Cyprus most dives are shore dives and you often walk over rocks that have been roasted in the 45 °C sun – so open heel fins with separate boots are best here. Open heel fins are also perfect for children as the heel strap simply slips over the boots and do not need to be replaced every time they grow. They can also be used by multiple family members (as long as not diving together of course).

 

Scuba Gear Fins: What do I use?

scuba pro nova

Scuba Gear: I love my very flexible Scubapro Sea Wing Nova fins

I am 160cm (5ft,4 inches) and I do the majority of my diving in the Mediterranean so I choose the very flexible Scubapro ‘Sea Wing Nova’ while diving at home. They are open healed and I love them. They are perfect for Cyprus where there is very little current for most of the year. However, I do take a more rigid fin when traveling (if I can I take both) so I can keep up with the big stuff like sharks and mantas.

So if you are slowly building up your scuba gear closet then congratulations! Investment in your passion usually means that you will continue it for years to come. Fins are perfect for keeping you in the water, they are big enough to take up a decent amount of space among your clothes and are a constant reminder to get in the water to  keep your fins wet and happy!!

 

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