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Old 06-03-13, 09:36 AM   #1
squirtdad
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swim training with fins?

picked up a pair of zoot swim training specific fins for 5 bucks at a neighbors garage sale. Now that I have them any suggestions on how to work into swim workouts....or do they go up in our next garage sale?

thanks
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Old 06-03-13, 05:21 PM   #2
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I have always looked at training fins as an item to use only during specific drill sets. I see plenty of triathletes at masters swimming that wear them the entire practice. The purpose of the fins is to give you a better leg strength workout, not simply to propel you faster. It seems that many people like them because they make kicking faster easier. Not sure how constantly wearing them in practice translates to faster race times. They also help float your feet which makes it easier to stay in proper swim position. Weaker swimmers or non-swimmers getting into the sport often have trouble keeping their legs straight with their feet near the surface. Most triathletes and distance swimmers use a 2 beat kick which is more helpful in maintaining proper body rotation than in providing massive amounts of forward propulsion. Sprinters or short distance swimmers using a constant 6 beat kick will see more benefit out of training with fins. Maintaining the rapid 6 beat kick over 1500m or more is difficult even for the best swimmers.

That is my long answer.

My short answer is keep them and use them. They are a great training tool. Use them during sprint kick sets or short distance sprint or speed sets. They will help build your leg strength making overall kicking and swimming more efficient. Just avoid using them during the entire swim workout.
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Old 06-03-13, 07:50 PM   #3
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I used them when I first started getting into triathlons. As a runner, my foot was pretty stiff and I would actually not move at all if I kicked while holding onto a flutterboard. The fins helped me straighten out my feet. I also used them to concentrate on my body and arm technique. The fins kept me moving so I could think about the rest of my body. It's a great tool but you should wean yourself off of them as you get closer to your race.
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Old 06-13-13, 06:43 AM   #4
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I find fins most useful for swimming really slowly, oddly enough. If I want to swim in "slow motion" to get some aspect of technique, such as timing, the fins let me do that. Then I gradually speed up and shed them altogether for swimming.
Fins help with flexibility, but I'll never have the ankles of a life-long swimmer - even after 12 years of swimming and using fins, mine are still stiff. Since even elite swimmers with extreme flexibility only get 20% of their forward propulsion from kicking, I don't worry much about kicking. A six-beat kick just slows me down.
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Old 05-03-14, 11:28 AM   #5
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They're a nice piece of equipment definitely but not entirely necessary in my opinion, keep them and use them when you feel like it.
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