Duck feet: What’s the best in 2021?
Today’s text deals with duck feet, one of the most traditional and versatile aquatic accessories on the market, bringing benefits to sports and various underwater activities.
The most common image we have of the duck’s foot is its use for diving, as a complement to those glued and waterproof suits, crowned with a beautiful snorkel. But this real fin can accompany bodyboarding, bodysurfing, even swimming.
In this Guide, we will show you how this accessory helps in all of these activities, and what the differences are for each one. We will also help your purchase, showing some of the best models on the market and how to choose the ideal one for you.
First, the most important
- Always look for the most resistant and flexible models, so they can last and really help you underwater.
- There are “right” models for each sport, at least more suitable, with a specific size, design and materials.
- Its price varies from R $ 70, among the most basic, and up to R $ 900, between professional and more technological models.
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The duck foot is the most practical and definitive solution for the movement of the human body in the water. This makes it versatile, and therefore a success as an accessory within the world of water sports.
Thus, there are a multitude of models of fins, materials, designs and for different purposes. In this Buying Guide, we will show you this variety, as well as the advantages and disadvantages of its use.
What is a duck foot?
Objectively speaking, the fin is an artificial fin, an object designed to increase the area of the body’s contact with water, simulating the design and seeking the efficiency of the fins of fish and other aquatic animals.
Basically, they are waterproof shoes, with shoehorns in fact, and with a flexible extension, the visor, which emulates the most rigid part of the tail of the natural fins and is where the sneaker tip would be.
Its history has two “heavyweight” inventors. The first is Leonardo da Vinci, who among his studies of anatomy in the 14th century sketched stretches of human limbs, based on those of animals, but without taking the next step.
Another is Benjamin Franklin, who in the 18th century came to produce and test prototypes quite similar to the definitive version, patented by Owen Churchill in 1940.
Today’s flippers are, in essence, quite similar to this patent, as is its basic design, with adjustable straps, and its composition with rubber, although much more modern.
What are the advantages and disadvantages of flippers?
The benefits of using duck feet go beyond greater efficiency in locomotion in water. With the fin, the user’s swim is enhanced, by “forcing” his body to maintain a certain and more hydrodynamic posture.
The accessory also provides the strengthening of the leg muscles used during swimming, especially in the ankle area, which is invariably more flexible and reinforced.
This, however, happens from a significant increase in the effort required to swim, which no matter how much you exercise, it is still a disadvantage.
Likewise, it is not the most practical shoes, at least when it comes to putting it on. Its use outside the water is not recommended, and putting it in the water is clearly not the simplest task.
- Efficient locomotion
- Enhances swimming
- Strengthens musculature
- Greater effort
- Practical paving
Duck leg with adjustable straps or complete shoehorns?
The most basic variety within the fin niche is the way they are wedged. There are those with adjustable straps, like sandals, and there are those with complete shoehorns, also known as closed.
The advantage of adjustable ones is explicit in the name, which can be adjusted to the size and comfort of the foot. More versatile, they are suitable for general use and for children.
However, they have a much larger internal space, which makes precise adjustment difficult, and therefore not the most suitable for those seeking greater performance, even though the use of neoprene socks and boots is a good solution for filling.
Closed models, on the other hand, work with precision shoe numbers, and are quite popular with divers. This is not to say that they are immune to foot “escapes” and mainly from blisters and other wounds resulting from use.
Duck foot with short or long flap?
Another differentiation that greatly influences the performance of the product and especially of its user under water is the length of the visor, the extended part of the shoe, which exerts such greater contact area.
Long-finned flippers require less effort for greater thrust, that is, they give greater speed to swimming and greater efficiency in diving. On the other hand, they do not give so much control, which is harmful in precision sports like bodyboard, for example.
For this type of activity, and for swimming training, the short-flippers are the most suitable. This is because her control is greater, as well as her necessary effort, and, therefore, the development of the musculature it provides.
Most stores work with a large price range on fins. The cheapest can be found for around R $ 70, while the most expensive, for up to R $ 900.
This is due to the large number of materials, designs and purposes that the product works with, ranging from children’s rubber sets to professional carbon models.
Where to buy?
The large sporting goods chains and even specialized stores offer the best and the best, with specialized attendants ready to assist your choice.
But, for a greater variety of models and prices, and to still make the purchase in the comfort of your home, visit sites such as Amazon.
Purchasing Criteria: Factors for buying the different flippers
As we have seen, it is not that simple to choose the perfect fin. Below, we list some elements that characterize the product and its use, and, mainly, serve as good criteria of choice at the time of purchase.
So, let’s talk about these items one by one, so that your choice is very well informed and, therefore, the best possible:
Knowing the activity in which you intend to use the fins is essential to choose the ideal model. As we mentioned above, each sport has a design and a suitable size.
Diving, for example, fits best with the long-tailed models and full shoehorns, while swimming and bodysurfing have more to gain from short-tailed and adjustable straps.
You should look for a balance between strength and flexibility in the material. In the first question, in addition to obviously the impermeability, with rubber or silicone coatings, durability is required, with carbon and fiberglass compositions.
Regarding flexibility, thermoplastic rubber, EVA and Polypropylene models already minimally meet the requirement.
This criterion directly affects users who practice swimming, as it interferes with speed. If you want a bigger propulsion, to train swimming like the chest and butterfly, for example, opt for the more flexible models.
If, however, you are looking to improve your start, for styles like freestyle, the stiffer flaps are your choice.
Note the flow of your models, both on the visor, with strategic grooves or channels, and within the pavement.
The idea is to prevent the accumulation of water – which will make the fins even heavier – and the consequent increase in mobility difficulties.
Despite everything, comfort remains one of the main criteria for choosing your ideal model. Especially because it ends up interfering directly in its performance with the product.The performance of swimmers or divers, or even surfers with healthy and safe feet will always surpass those with injured feet, full of pain and discomfort.
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