Today you will find a variety of scuba fins type, design, and stiffness, but one on the most interesting trend in the last decade is the introduction of split fins.
Many divers around the world are still debating about the overall efficiency of split fins.
But, those how favor them claims that they are almost 30% more efficient than traditional paddle fins, and are much easier on their ankles and knees as well. (more about this below)
You must keep in mind thou, not all split fins are created equal and not all of them will give you the best performance. When it comes to getting the most out of these type of fins, you need to have the best.
This can be somewhat daunting with the amount of split fins available these days. Don’t worry thou, I’ve done all the heavy lifting for you.
Below is a comparison chart of some of the best split fins on the market. Check it out.
The Ultimate Split Fins Chart
Use the chart below compare their features, user ratings and price, to find the fins that are best for you.
|Picture||Rating||Foot Pocket||Strap||Price||More Info.|
|Apollo Bio Fins Pro||4.8||Open Heel||Adjustable Rubber||Above $200||Pricing and Reviews|
|Atomic Aquatics Split Fins||4.6||Open Heel/Full Foot||Spring Strap||Above $200||Pricing and Reviews|
|Scubapro Twin Jet Max||4.4||Open Heel/Full Foot||Adjustable Rubber||$150 - $200||Pricing and Reviews|
|Tusa X-Pert Zoom Z3||4.7||Open Heel||Spring Strap||$100 - $150||Pricing and Reviews|
|Mares Raptor||4.2||Open Heel||Adjustable Rubber||$50 - $100||Pricing and Reviews|
|Scubapro Twin Jet||4.7||Open Heel/Full Foot||Adjustable Rubber||$150 - $200||Pricing and Reviews|
What Are Split Fins Anyway?
Unlike your traditionally paddle fins, they have a split in the middle of the blade going almost the entire length. The fins are often supported by two ridge on either side for added support and flex.
So, How Do They Work?
Traditional paddle fins moves you forward through the water by pushing water backwards. While kicking with these types of fins most of the water spills over the sides of the blade, making them somewhat unstable and inefficient. This also creates added drag, and requires more effort on your part to move forward.
However, split fins pretty much work on the same principle of a propeller. Water is forced through the split on the power stroke, which causes both sides of the blade to form into a foil shape. The foil shaped fins then creates lift, moving you forwards trough the water.
They also greatly reduces drag because any water traveling over the surface is channel in and out of the split instead of over the sides of the fin. Overall drag and effort are reduces, which greatly increase the efficiently.
Below is a quick illustration of how split fins work.
Photo Source: http://www.alertdiver.com/232#sthash.dZnUg5nS.dpuf
How To Get The Most Out Of Your Split Fins
When using split fins for the first time you might worry about how easy they are to kick. But, there is nothing wrong, your are probably going just as fast as you where with your old dive fins.
Generally, for you to get the most out of your split fins you will need to change your kicking style to shorter flutter kick. So, if you are a diver that uses a longer stroke flutter kick and are not willing to change your kicking style, then you will not get the most out of them.
How not to kick with split fins
Below is a short video I found on youtube.com. The video shows you exactly now not to kick with split fins, or any other fins for that matter. At least he was wearing split fins thou, the kicking he was doing would be useless with any other type of fins. Enjoy, and try not to laugh too hard, unless you have the same kicking style.
If you have great success with split fins, or just generally hate them, leave a reply below and let us know your story.