Dolphins are generally viewed as one of the most graceful animals in the world. What tips the scale, is that they are powerful and fast, too! How is this possible? As swimmers, we also strive to be the fastest in the water with good technique – so how can we swim more like a dolphin? It’s definitely not by developing a blowhole or jumping out of the water, but maybe we can mimic the same velocity of their propelling fin. The FINIS Monofin brings us one step closer to swimming like a dolphin, essentially helping a swimmer mimic the movements of a dolphin tail.
In addition to partially fulfilling our childhood dreams of maneuvering in a pool like a dolphin would, Monofins also have great advantages for competitive swimming. Realizing the training potential of the single bladed fin for competitive swimming, FINIS’ co-founders developed not 1… not 2… but 8 different styles of Monofins. Each different type of Monofin provides for a slightly different purpose but generally all have the same benefits.
Training with a Monofin has major benefits for your swimming technique. The Monofin helps to engage your calf and thigh muscles, increase ankle flexibility and strengthen the core. Having a strong core is crucial for you to assist with obtaining the proper body position and to better stabilize your strokes.
Obviously, the stroke that gets the most benefit out of wearing the Monofin is butterfly. The Monofin can be used to learn the fundamentals of the dolphin kick, as most beginner level swimmers have a difficult time keeping their feet together. Also, wearing the Monofin helps you learn and recognize efficient butterfly undulation.
If you watch any world-class swimming athlete, you will notice one of the common trends of their success are streamlines with efficient, fast underwater kicking. Another positive about the Monofin is that it helps increase leg strength so that you can push of the walls harder and maintain a powerful kick through your breakout stroke. It even has improves the power emitted from the single dolphin kick in a breaststroke pull down.
Here are a couple of sample sets that really put into practice the Monofin:
10 x 50s Under/Overs @ 1:15 min intervals
Kick underwater for a 25 flip turn and come back turning over on your back for the 2nd 25
12 x 25s @ 45 sec intervals
No Breath Underwater dolphin kick. Focus on quick dolphin kicks and undulating. This is a great set that works your breath control off your walls while encouraging great undulation!
8 x 25s 360 Underwater Spirals @ 40 sec intervals
Push off the wall in normal streamline position, the slowly rotate to your side, then to your back, side, and then finally back to your stomach. Make 1 full rotation (hence the 360!) each 25. This practices core stability and breath control.
No matter what the style of Monofin you wear, you will build the needed strength in your legs and back to improve your workout. Whether you are a recreational, fitness or competitive swimmer, the Monofin provides the perfect combination of a total body workout and fun!
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