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Mermaid Veruliya
08-08-2013, 10:46 PM
Finally got to test my monofin and came up with a lot of concerns.

13418 It's curved. Is it supposed to be? Should I lay a textbook on it?

13419 See these circle things? They dig into the back of my heel when I point my feet so much that I was about to cut them off. I can't feel them when I swim though so I'll leave them be.

13420 Ignore my cat, he was playing with it too. The foot pockets barely fit my narrow size 6 feet. I had them on the last notch out of water and they felt pretty good. Then in the water, I ended up tightening them 3 notches bc it kept falling off. My skinny feet kept slipping through the top of the toes part.

Now to my functional concerns. I've swam in a lot of flippers but never a monofin. Flippers tied together, yes. Monofin, no. SO I thought this would be the same. I really felt it in my calves, I thought I was supposed to get an ab workout? Also, pushing back is fine, but I felt like I was bending my feet in half trying to push forward. Like it was almost hurting my feet when I push in the direction in front of me. Maybe I'm not doing it right. My bf said it looked really good, but I feel like I must be doing something wrong, or will I just get used to it? HELP!!

Anahita
08-08-2013, 10:55 PM
Ok, so your first concern, I don't think you need to worry about the curve. That monofin is rubber, so it will have a little curve in it, and on top of that, when you swim, it's going to be bending anyhow.

For your second concern, if it doesn't hurt when you swim, I wouldn't worry about it. It'll just make more work for you if you cut them off and can't feel the difference when you swim in it.

Third concern: Neoprene socks/booties! I use them all the time because even though my feet aren't very narrow, they're small and the like to squish themselves even more (especially the toes) for some reason. Incidentally, the neoprene socks/booties might also help alleviate the discomfort of the circle things on the straps.

Mermaid Veruliya
08-08-2013, 10:58 PM
Any tips for swimming technique?

Anahita
08-08-2013, 11:27 PM
Definitely remember that the movement starts in your abdominal/torso area, not your knees, then let it flow through your legs and carry out to the fin. Don't stiffen up, and don't bend your knees to kick, because that will make you do that "inchworm" thing that some swimmers do. Your knees and ankles should be inclined to bend slightly once you're moving, that's good, just let them flow.

I know when I was on swim team WAY back in high school a lot of my fellow swimmers kept their arms out in front of them with one hand over the other to help them with the motion (some people are natural with the dolphin kick, some not so much, and this elongating of your form and using your hands as a kind of guide can help.)

And of course, if you can, you always have the option to start yourself off by giving a little bit of a kick-off from the pools sidewalls. Just make sure you do it with the heels of your feet against the wall, not the blade of the monofin (if you use the monofin blade against the wall with that much pressure, it will break)

Nausicaa
08-09-2013, 01:19 AM
Yes, it's normal for the blade to be slightly curved, especially if you bought it used or after you've had it in the water before, it gets stress wear just like any other plastic. I wouldn't recommend trying to flatten it out though, as that could damage the integrity of the plastic and heighten the chance that it could crack or snap from being bent back and forth. Both of my monofins got that way the first or second time that I used them, and they've never gotten any worse, even my two year old one.
As for the little rubber doohickeys I don't know, I use the Finis Rapid monofin in all of my tails and it doesn't have those. But if they aren't bothering you when you swim then you should probably just leave them.

But with all of the finis monofins with the hard plastic foot areas I REALLY recommend getting yourself some neoprene booties, wearing socks, or just plain duct taping your heels like a skiier lol, because the hard corners on the outside of the foot pockets will kick your butt after just a couple of swims. I have permanent scars on both of my feet from my first summer of mermaiding, why I didn't figure out sooner how to NOT let my monofin tear me into pieces is a question that I might never know the answer to :doh:

http://i1262.photobucket.com/albums/ii618/xmissingxtoastx/2013-08-08215228_zps188a87b0.jpg (http://s1262.photobucket.com/user/xmissingxtoastx/media/2013-08-08215228_zps188a87b0.jpg.html)
http://i1262.photobucket.com/albums/ii618/xmissingxtoastx/2013-08-08215217_zps42ec5c98.jpg (http://s1262.photobucket.com/user/xmissingxtoastx/media/2013-08-08215217_zps42ec5c98.jpg.html)

As for swimming techniques, I don't know if I can really help you right now, as just swimming in just your monofin is actually WAY different that going in full-tail haha. With just the monofin when your banking, diving or turning you will naturally move your knees and it really helps you balance, while when your knees are bound in your tail, balancing is a whole different story so really try to practice NOT opening your knees at all.

When I first started tail swimming my problem was that I didn't really do enough research on the "dolphin kick" before getting in the water. I thought that I was all pro-style, but all I was actually doing was just lashing my tail back and forth from my knees and that would pretty much exhaust me in a couple of minutes, and because I wasn't using the monofin to it's full potential because of the way that I was going about it I couldn't really get much speed or power going either.

My advice would be to practice your dolphin kick without any flippers or you monofin, because when you're able to rely on those things to get your power you start working from your knees down rather than your whole body. In a true dolphin kick swim, you aren't even really supposed to use your knees at all, but rather a rolling propulsion that comes from your shoulders and abs. :)

Mermaid Veruliya
08-09-2013, 11:12 AM
Thanks guys! I was also having trouble staying under long bc the pool was pitch black. I kept thinking I was swimming too close to the bottom(the pool was disgusting) or swimming too deep, or about to swim into a wall. Ill have to try again soon

AptaMer
08-10-2013, 01:20 PM
I agree with Lyric. Neoprene socks or booties can be as lifesaver. They prevent chafing on your skin, and help you fit the foot pocket better. Swim Outlet has pretty good prices http://www.swimoutlet.com/product_p/3630.htm

Also, if neoprene is too thick and you can't fit in the foot pockets, you can get thin latex socks ( http://www.amazon.com/Speedo-Infection-Protection-Swimming-8-5-9-5/dp/B009FGAIXO ) but I haven't tried those myself, so can't say how well they work.. I've tried regular socks, but they tend to allow your feet to shift around and cause chafing themselves. Also, pool chlorine wrecks them fairly quickly.

Capt Nemo
08-11-2013, 07:14 PM
Look for the 1-2mm booties. Most dive shops should have them.

fawkes
08-12-2013, 08:37 PM
I have this same monofin and I hate the very air it breathes!!!!! GRRRRRR

Also you will notice, after a while, your foot straps will come loose all the time(where you adjust them).

I literally mean, every 4 minutes this will happen.

...I'm gonna try a method with a butane torch to melt them into place, I suggest you do the same on yours in someway, cause adjusting a monofin while its in a tail is just about the worst freakin thing ever when it comes to the "god awful annoying" factor.

Then just use the center hook/clip to take it on and off.

...god I hate this monofin so much. :jawdrop:

Hopefully yours works better than mine. Booties are a must with this thing!

Mermaid Veruliya
08-12-2013, 08:55 PM
I went swimming again today, this time during daylight in a cleaner pool. I was having trouble keeping water from going up my nose and down my throat while swimming fast and fluently. Also, my monofin kept floating up! I was having the hardest time staying fluent when it was harder to kick down than up.
I felt it get really more flexible tonight too. Which is good, because it was way more difficult when it was stuff and curved. It's more curved now.. But more flexible too. So idk. I won't be getting a competitor any time soon so I guess it's good enough haha

Kumori Kitsune
08-13-2013, 03:07 AM
I have a wave too My feet are an 8 so I dont always use the strap. It takes the fin time to break in. .I swim more with my legs too idk where but when i move my ankles more then my I then tknees it tends to work beter hope it helps. your mono fin out of the sun when not using it the heat and chemicals can make the rubber harder

Anahita
08-13-2013, 03:21 AM
A competitor will only be stiffer ;) Seriously, it's fiberglass, and because it's so stiff, it's not very forgiving for first-time users.

A suggestion about your trouble though, you shouldn't really be "kicking". I know it's called a dolphin kick, but you really shouldn't be kicking. The narrator in this video explains it much better than I can


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rAIRWXYX3s8

Mermaid Veruliya
08-13-2013, 10:45 AM
My boyfriend watched me underwater and said I wasn't kicking at the knees, but that I flowed more up stronger than I did down. Which was also making it hard for me to stay down. I think I just need to work on getting stronger. It's hard to explain, it's like my range of direction is uneven. Maybe that's why I feel the curve so much with drag. Once my fin was more flexible I felt the curve disappear a little in the water, he said I was more fluent today as well as faster.
My boyfriend can't fit into mine and he's so jealous, he keeps saying how he wants one haha :)

Anahita
08-13-2013, 03:26 PM
He should totally get one! Even if it's just a finis foil to see if he likes it. After all, if he decides he hates it/hurts his feet/doesn't feel "right", at least the foil was only a $50 loss.

Mermaid Veruliya
08-13-2013, 05:19 PM
He's been swimming competitively for a long time, but we don't have fun races around here. But I think for rec or training he'd enjoy it!

Marie Gremillion
07-17-2018, 07:39 PM
Can someone help me? I have basically the same problem as the OP, only worse. I ordered my finis rapid from amazon and it was very curved when it came, to the point where it does not lay flat at all and you can see the curve when I swim in it. How will I sandwich the two parts of the fluke on it if it’s that curved? Not to mention it will look really wonky if I’m doing a dry gig.

Ransom
07-17-2018, 10:22 PM
Can someone help me? I have basically the same problem as the OP, only worse. I ordered my finis rapid from amazon and it was very curved when it came, to the point where it does not lay flat at all and you can see the curve when I swim in it. How will I sandwich the two parts of the fluke on it if itís that curved? Not to mention it will look really wonky if Iím doing a dry gig.Some people have been able to resolve that by putting a heavy object on the blade (like a mattress) and squashing it flat against the floor so it straightens out. I've done that once or twice myself.

I'm not sure how effective it'll be in your case, but it's worth trying out.

suzanne86
07-18-2018, 09:28 PM
Try wearing some low-cut cotton socks with your monofin. Also, in getting used to it, start out dolphin kicking in it with a kickboard on the surface of the water. Try the head-high (above the water) and head-in-the-water positions. After that, dolphin kick on your back without a kickboard, keeping your hands and arms straight above your head in the streamline position. These exercises will help you get used to the feel and thrust of your monofin. Do these things before attempting to swim underwater in a tail. Just my two cents! :-)