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  #1  
Old 05-28-2015
tony0000 tony0000 is offline
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Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: Detroit, MI
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tony0000
Default Fins for Swimming

Fins come is a variety of styles, short/long, stiff/flexible, heel/strap, etc. What style of fin works best with the TI-crawl if one's goal is to swim far and fast using them? That is, I'm not interested using them just for training for a finless swim. I'd like to use them mostly for open water swims so I can cover greater distances faster and more efficiently.

Or am I mistaken that using fins while swimming can result in farther and faster swimming?

Any thoughts appreciated.

Tony
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  #2  
Old 05-28-2015
Danny Danny is offline
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Hi Tony,

Here's something a life guard once told me: The longer blades generate more power, which enables you to go faster for longer, but the shorter blades are more responsive for quick acceleration or turning.

If that's true, sounds like you want a long blade.
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  #3  
Old 05-30-2015
CoachEricDeSanto CoachEricDeSanto is offline
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Hi Tony,
Let's look at this big picture. If you NEED fins to cover a longer distance, that is evidence that your technique is off. Train your technique to be able to hold any distance with a relaxed easy stroke. Your first priorities are always balance and streamline. Fins don't help those. If you spend too much time in fins before locking in your balance and streamline, you run the risk of cheating because the fins will lift your legs. If your balance is not right, this could arch your back (sore low back) or hide shoulder injuring stroke faults.

After your balance and streamline are locked in, make sure you are generating power from your core using body rotation. (All the usual TI stuff.)

Once your balance,streamline and core power are locked in so you can cover any distance in a relaxed easy stroke, then you can think about speeding up with fins. Long fins will produce more propulsion. A stiff blade will put a lot of pressure on your foot and ankle. Many people get injured because they don't allow the foot to strengthen before pushing a stiff fin. I would think (although I don't have any direct experience here) that a softer blade would allow you to keep your legs more straight (streamlined) and generate more of the kick with the core (less quickly fatigued) where a stiff fin would probably require more quad muscle (more quickly fatigued).
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  #4  
Old 05-30-2015
CoachSuzanne CoachSuzanne is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tony0000 View Post
Fins come is a variety of styles, short/long, stiff/flexible, heel/strap, etc. What style of fin works best with the TI-crawl if one's goal is to swim far and fast using them? That is, I'm not interested using them just for training for a finless swim. I'd like to use them mostly for open water swims so I can cover greater distances faster and more efficiently.

Or am I mistaken that using fins while swimming can result in farther and faster swimming?

Any thoughts appreciated.

Tony
are you pursuing this as a point A to oint B sort of pursuit? or for fitness? or something else? You can swim further & faster with fins, but I'm curiosu what your end goal is. Are you spear fishing? Taking photographs? Snorkling and moving from place to place? Or just swimming? What's the long term outcome you want?
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Coach of 5 time USA Triathlon Triathlete of the Year, Kirsten Sass
Steel City Endurance, LTD
Fresh Freestyle

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  #5  
Old 05-31-2015
milo229 milo229 is offline
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Join Date: May 2015
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milo229
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Danny View Post
Hi Tony,

Here's something a life guard once told me: The longer blades generate more power, which enables you to go faster for longer, but the shorter blades are more responsive for quick acceleration or turning.

If that's true, sounds like you want a long blade.
That a good idea
I'll try it,

--

Last edited by milo229 : 05-31-2015 at 09:45 PM.
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  #6  
Old 05-31-2015
Streak Streak is offline
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As coach Suzanne said work out why you want them first as there are many different styles for different purposes.

I chose Alpha fins as they float and are very small sort of shaped like a bigger foot. I wanted to use them as a pull buoy without having to clamp the buoy between my knees.
As you will see in the first half of the video below i just drag my legs behind me with the body roll causing a little movement, sort of a precursor to a 2bk.
They keep my legs in the draft of my body and it gives me the feeling what it could feel like if I managed to kick properly without them. I get surprisingly good times doing this.

In the second half I then introduce a bit of a 2bk to get a bit of speed. I find these fins helped with my timing when not using them.

When I was less confident in open water I used them there too for a little extra boost.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G9XtaCp5CeI
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  #7  
Old 06-04-2015
tony0000 tony0000 is offline
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Coach Suzzane,

You ask what my goal is. Fair question.

I'm mostly thinking about lake swimming. While doing it, I enjoy glancing at the scenery and the lake floor. Swimming faster would allow me to see more of the lake and floor. Also, there is, I think, an intrinsic enjoyment in moving more quickly through the water. Finally, I'd like to go far for the challenge of it: can I make it to X, or Y, or Z on the lake.

I am not a purist. I do not believe that swimming without assistance (fins, gloves, snorkel, whatever) is inherently better than swimming with assistance. Every form of propulsion through water presents it's own challenges, enjoyment, benefits, etc. Each to his own.

Tony
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