Finning Tips to be a better Diver

Are you one of those divers that kick about under water without giving it much thought? A lot of divers do but you can be a better diver by learning a few finning styles to help conserve energy as well as being mindful of the environment you are in.

There are two critical aptitudes that are required to make a diver comfortable and at home in the water, is great finning technique and good buoyancy control, yet which to master first?

Buoyancy control is very nearly an essential part for successful finning, particularly for the more advance fin kicks. Be that as it may most divers study finning first and ace buoyancy control later, so let’s review a couple basic finning techniques for amateurs and advance for individuals who have better buoyancy control.

While practicing, it is important to always think about neutral buoyancy.


The essential style that everybody is thought in their Open Water Course is the basic up-down flutter kick. The legs move up and down in opposing directions, with the forward push being given by the downward stroke of each fin.

Water is pushed off the upper surface of the blade and the tips curve back with respect to the diver’s feet. The upward stroke only slips past the water to get the fin primed for the following downward stroke.

The legs are kept pretty much straight, however it is alright to bend the knees a bit. The vital point is that your heels stay a constant distance from your posterior.

In the event that the heels move in and out from the posterior, the blades will be cutting the water in an inefficient bicycling movement instead of pushing the water backwards to give a forward push.

The flutter kick works best with long, delicate strokes, utilizing the muscles at the front of the thighs to do the greater part of the work. Long strokes boost the exertion every stroke uses, pushing the diver forward, and minimize the time each fin spends ineffective at the end of each stroke.

The huge impediment of the flutter kick is that the wash from the fins streams down (and additionally upwards to some degree) at the finish of every stroke. This implies that it can easily kick up sand when you are to near the bottom and also upset any marine life close-by.

However, the flutter kick is easy to use, works with all types of fin, and provides a good forward thrust that is fairly even throughout the fin cycle.



  • On the surface
  • During descent and ascent
  • Off a wall
  • When well clear of the seabed
  • When swimming into a current
  • When speed is required over a period of time


  • Close to a silty or sandy seabed
  • Inside a wreck
  • In a cave
  • When swimming close above coral or other delicate marine life


The frog kick is a similar version to an underwater the breast stroke kick.

The fin slips through the water out and sideways until the legs are completely extended to either side. Forward push is then given by twisting the blades, so that moving them back in pushes water with the underside of the fins.


Unlike the flutter kick, forward thrust is provided only through the second half of the stroke, the first half merely positioning the fins for the thrusting kick.

Thrust is provided from the under-surface of the blades, the tips bends upward in relation to the diver’s feet throughout the thrusting part of the stroke. The muscles that do the majority of the work are the backs and inner parts of the thighs.

A frog kick makes next to no downward wash, so it avoids the primary disadvantage of the flutter kick.

However, the uneven thrust throughout the stroke and the slower repeat of strokes makes it less suitable for circumstances in which continuous thrust or speed is required.

Numerous divers find it relaxing to utilize the frog kick as a general cruising kick, either by itself or alternating with the flutter kick at regular intervals, to rest the muscles utilized by the other stroke.

The frog kick may not work great with certain fins.


  • For general cruising
  • When close above a coral reef or delicate marine life
  • When close to a sandy or silty seabed
  • To rest the muscles used by the flutter kick
  • Inside large caves


  • In narrow corridors of a wreck
  • In a tight cave
  • Close alongside a wall
  • When a prolonged burst of speed is needed
  • When swimming into a strong current
  • On the surface


The frog kick and the short (or modifed) form here, are two extremes of what is truly a continuum of kicks. Take the full frog kick, however don’t move your legs as far out, picking rather a length of kick that suits you and the circumstances.

At the extreme, the movement of your thighs and knees is extremely restricted, and it is the calves and a flick of the ankles that do all the work.

The fins slips past the water out and sideways until they are primed to kick. Forward push is then given by twisting the fins so moving them back in pushes water once again with the underside of the fins finishing the stroke and leaving the diver primed to begin once more exactly like the frog kick.


The short frog kick provides very little thrust, however it does not have any wash up, down or to the sides. It likewise keeps the fins in line with the diver’s body.

These two characteristics joined makes it a perfect choice for confined spaces, where a diver does not want either wash or the fins themselves to stir sediment or damage any delicate marine life.

The short frog kick is likewise popular for those investigating inside wrecks and caves, as well as photographers who need to get closer to coral reefs and other marine life to take photos while ensuring their fins are not a deterrence in the process

Similarly the short frog kick may not be suitable for all kinds of fins.


  • Inside wrecks
  • In caves or any confined space
  • When close above a sandy or silty seabed
  • Close to a wall
  • When manoeuvring near delicate marine life
  • For stability, often used with backwards kick


  • When finning against a current
  • When speed is needed
  • On the surface


Here is an advanced fin kick that needs you to be in control of your buoyancy before attempting to utilize it. The backwards kick is never stylish, yet could be useful in circumstances where you have to move away from something while still looking at it, or where you have to revers for a short distance without turning around.

Note that fins are not designed to move backwards.

The entire technique depends more on scooping water than on any refined hydrodynamic rule.

The fins are turned out and as square to the leg as they can go. The legs are then spread out and the knees bent to scoop the fins forward, pulling you backwards in the water.

This is the tricky part, where the fins are turned sideways to the water with the goal that they might be moved over to the starting point without pushing you forward once again.


The scooping is done with the upper surface of the fins, curving them downwards relative to your feet.

The backwards kick is the exact reverse of the frog kick, the fins working through the first half of the kick and after that slipping back through the water in the second half.


  • When you need to move away from something while looking at i
  • When you need to move backwards and must not touch anything
  • When you need to move back while handling a reel or camera
  • To reverse out of holes
  • For stability when you don’t really want to go anywhere, partnered with the short frog kick


  • As a general cruising kick
  • Against a current
  • When speed is needed
  • For long distances
  • When you need to see where you are going
  • When fin tips could kick anything at the outer reach of the kick


This is an alternate technique strategy for more experience divers. This asymmetric kick consolidates parts of both the flutter and frog kicks. Divers who haven’t tried it before are normally astounded by the amount of thrust could be produced by a long, lazy split kick.

One leg is devoted to the upper part of the kick, the other making the opposite. In the picture the left leg is utilized as the upper leg and the right leg the lower.

The upper leg is moved upwards as in a typical flutter kick, the fin slips past the water and provides no thrust at this point of the cycle. In the mean time, the lower leg makes a downward kick, twisting the knee somewhat as in a frog kick, yet keeping the fin movement downwards with the intention of thrusting through the water. This is not the main thrust stroke stroke of the kick, instead a kind of additional.

From the extreme of the split, the legs are then brought together, the top of the upper fin and the under-side of the lower fin pushing against the water to provide thrust. This could be seen by the blades curving away from one another.

The stroke ends with the fins being brought together one above the other, squashing the last bit of water out to provide the final bit of thrust.


The lower leg provides thrust throughout the fin cycle, while the upper leg only gives thrust during the second part of the cycle. Since the fins are brought together, it is not practical to swap legs at the end of every stroke. A few divers favour one leg, while others will swap legs every 10 or so strokes.

The split kick works best with long and effective strokes to create high thrust, however the disadvantage is that it can’t be speeded up, such as the flutter kick. This is a power kick, rather than a speed kick.


  • For powerful cruising
  • Swimming into a current
  • When more thrust is required without increasing the kick rate
  • To rest groups of leg muscles, switching legs every few cycles of the kick
  • As an initial strong kick or two to get going


  • Close to a silty or sandy seabed
  • Inside a wreck
  • Inside a cave
  • For long distances
  • When swimming close to coral or other delicate marine life
  • When ultimate speed is needed

Each technique can be utilized in different situations to better make use of its advantages. Which technique to be used when will come naturally with experience so go out there and practice and soon you will see yourself finning like a pro.

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