Freediving Fins

Best FreeDiving Fins

If you are switching from scuba diving to freediving, you may be surprised that you are going to need some different equipment. The wetsuits used for freediving are different as well as the masks and fins. We’re here to look at freediving fins and exactly what you want to look for when buying them. We’ll also list the best freediving fins on the market so you can more easily decide which fins are right for you.

What should you look for in freediving fins?

As we mentioned before, freediving fins differ in many ways than traditional scuba fins. When scuba diving, you use fins for the specific dive you are on. For example, if you are cave diving, you want fins that are going to let you move around without stirring up sediment.

With freediving though, the purpose is the same across the board. You want fins that will propel you through the water using the least amount of energy. Energy conservation is one of the most important aspects of freediving. Since you aren’t using breathing gasses, the amount of time you can dive underwater is going to depend on that single breath you have. The more efficiently you move and the less energy you expend, the longer you have underwater.

In this respect, freediving fins are probably the single most important equipment purchase you will make. Second to freediving fins being a good freediving wetsuit. You want fins that fit comfortably and allow for quick and efficient movement. With that said, there are a few main points to consider:

Foot Pockets

The name says it all. The foot pockets are the area of the fin where you put your foot. As this is the part of the fin that connects to your body, you want to make sure it is comfortable.

You want the foot pockets to fit snugly around your feet but, at the same time, not so tight that they cause discomfort. If the foot pockets are too tight around your feet they can cause cramping and even numbness. This will obviously impair your ability to dive comfortably and efficiently and will likely shorten the time you spend in the water.

There are two primary types of foot pockets:

  1. Separate
  2. Integrated

Separate foot pockets detach from the blade making it easier to travel with them. The downside is that they can be a bit heavier than an integrated foot pocket. Usually, a separate foot pocket will attach via screws as well as clips on the side rail. This makes it easier to replace a blade if it breaks, rather than buying a completely new set of fins.

Integrated foot pockets mean the blade and foot pocket is one solid piecet. These are the most commonly used fins. They transfer energy more efficiently throughout the fin. The downside to these is that they are more difficult to travel with. Also, if part of the blade breaks, the entire fin must be thrown away and a new set of fins purchased.

Blades

The blades are the long part of the fin that propels you through the water. There are a few things to take into consideration when it comes to blades. Primarily, the material the blades are made from and the stiffness of the blades. Freediving blades come in three materials:

  • Plastic – these are great for beginners as they are cheaper and often more durable. The only downside to plastic is that it doesn’t transfer energy as well as carbon fiber and fiberglass. If you are a beginner getting technique down, this isn’t as much of an issue. But, for more advanced freedivers, there are better alternatives.
  • Fiberglass – this is a good material for intermediate and advanced level freedivers. Fiberglass can transfer energy more efficiently than plastic. It also maintains its shape better in the long term than plastic. The main disadvantage is that fiberglass is more expensive and less durable. It is therefore more prone to cracking if dropped or hit against objects such as rocks or reefs. We don’t recommend fiberglass for new divers.
  • Carbon Fiber – these are going to be the most expensive type of freediving fins. They are also the least durable out of the three materials. One snap against coral or rock or other hard surfaces is enough to cause cracks. When it comes to performance though, carbon fiber fins provide the most efficient movement. We discourage new freedivers from using these. They are not cheap and can be quite easy to break.

We recommend plastic blades for new freedivers and fiberglass blades for those more experienced. We do not recommend you buy carbon fiber. Mostly, carbon fiber is used by professional freedivers who are looking for the greatest advantage in competition. For recreational freeders, the price is just too high and the risk of breaking them too great.

Most likely, you will be traveling a lot with your fins. Fiberglass and plastic will hold up fine to constant travel. You will need to take more precautions when packing fiberglass, but if you do, your fins will be fine. With carbon fiber though, the opportunities for them to break are just too many. You will not be getting that much more bang for your buck than with fiberglass fins. So, as we said, unless you are a professional looking for an advantage in competition, stick to plastic or fiberglass

The final point when it comes to blades is the stiffness of the blades and how easily they move. How stiff the blades need to be will be determined by your body and your personal preferences. The smaller you are and the less strong your legs, the softer you want the blade to be. If you are a larger individual with stronger and more powerful legs, a stiffer blade will be better.

Stiffer blades are going to give you better energy transfer. But, if you don’t have the strength to use them you are going to tire yourself out faster and expend more oxygen. Always choose your blades based on your individual strength and size.

Comfort

We touched on this a bit above. Comfort should be your number one priority when it comes to purchasing freediving fins. This means that the fins should fit snugly without being too tight. It is always best to try on fins before you purchase them. If you are planning on ordering fins online, try some on at a store first to get the sizing correct.

Uncomfortable fins can easily ruin an otherwise perfect day of freediving. If your fins are too tight, they will cause you to cramp up and can even lead to the numbing of your ankles and toes. On the other hand, if they are too loose, you are going to waste a lot of energy and won’t get the most efficient movement from them.

Try and find freediving fins with softer material in the areas that will be in contact with your skin. You can also wear neoprene socks as an extra layer of protection. These are a good option if you find your fins have some free space after putting your foot in. The socks can help to fill in the gaps between your feet and the fin. This makes movement more efficient and will help you to move more easily underwater

Temperature

One final point to make is that you need to take into consideration the temperature of the waters you will be diving in. If you are diving in primarily cold waters you will want a neoprene dive sock. This is going to add thickness to your foot which you need to take into consideration when choosing fin size.

If you travel a lot and plan on diving in both warm and cold water environments, it may be worth getting two sets of dive fins. The first set sized to your feet for warmer waters where you don’t need a neoprene sock. The second sized to fit your feet with the sock on for colder waters. Remember that the colder the waters are the thicker the neoprene sock you will want. So, make sure to take each of these points into consideration when looking at sizing.

What are the best freediving fins?

Beuchat Mundial One Fins

Cressi Gara Professional LD [46/47]
113 Reviews
Cressi Gara Professional LD [46/47]
  • High performance fin that requires minimum effort...
  • Blade made from a special elastomer polypropylene...
  • Improved anatomy of the foot pocket made in...
  • The perfect union between blade and foot...
  • Delivering the maximum power with minimum energy...

Beuchat is a company that is synonymous with spearfishing and other underwater activities. In fact, the company’s founder, George Beuchat, was the inventor of the modern-day speargun. They are known for high-quality diving equipment. Especially when it comes to spearfishing and freediving. The Mundial One fins have all of the qualities you would expect to find in good freediving fins.. They are extremely durable plastic fins made for beginner freedivers.

Pros:

  • The Mundial One fins have a softer foot pocket for added comfort. This is important as many fins without soft foot pockets can cause blisters on your feet. These fins will be more comfortable for long term use.
  • They are made from a durable plastic polymer. This is a good option for beginners who are more prone to striking things such as coral and rock. They will last much longer for a beginner diver than other materials such as fiberglass or carbon fiber.
  • These are the cheapest fins on our list. If you are just getting started freediving or spearfishing, these are an excellent choice. The level of quality and craftsmanship you get for the price is top-notch.

Biggest Con:

  • The biggest con that we, and many other people have had with these fins is that they fit quite wide. This isn’t a major issue if you have wider feet but if not you may notice a little movement in the foot pocket area. This can be fixed easily with a pair of neoprene dive socks.

MAKO Freedive Hunter Fins

MAKO Spearguns Freedive Hunter Freediving Fins...
13 Reviews
MAKO Spearguns Freedive Hunter Freediving Fins...
  • Freediving Fins with Polypropylene Composite...
  • Our foot pockets are soft for comfort where...
  • These are probably the finest entry level freedive...
  • Available in size 8-9, 10-11, and 12-13

MAKO is one of the newer manufacturers of spearfishing and freediving gear. They are well known for their high-quality spearguns. What makes them different is that they sell directly from their store to you. So, they are cutting out many of the middlemen who lead to expensive markups on dive gear. Their Freedive Hunter fins are a great choice for new freedivers looking for both quality and a good price. They are made from plastic so they won’t break as easily.

Pros:

  • As we mentioned above, MAKO is able to keep its prices down by keeping out middlemen. Their products go from the factory directly to their store and are sold and shipped from there.
  • They come in a wide range of sizes. This is great for finding freediving fins that fit your feet exactly. One of the many complaints that newer divers have is that they find a pair of fins they like but can’t find their foot size.
  • The Freedive Hunter fins come with a soft foot pocket for added comfort. As we’ve mentioned before, having a soft foot pocket is a major plus as it can extend the length of time you can use your fins.

Biggest Con:

  • A few users have reported these fins to be very stiff. If you are a smaller freediver or if you don’t have very strong leg muscles, these may be a little too stiff. If this is the case, we recommend the above Beuchat Mundial One fins as a better alternative.

Cressi Gara Professional LD Soft Full Pocket Fins

Cressi Gara Professional LD [46/47]
113 Reviews
Cressi Gara Professional LD [46/47]
  • High performance fin that requires minimum effort...
  • Blade made from a special elastomer polypropylene...
  • Improved anatomy of the foot pocket made in...
  • The perfect union between blade and foot...
  • Delivering the maximum power with minimum energy...

Cressi is a titan of the diving industry. The company was founded in the mid-1940s by spearfishers. Today, they manufacture a wide range of dive gear for scuba diving, spearfishing, freediving, and more. We like the Gara Professional LD fins because they have everything you need in a high-quality fin with a very moderate price. They are an excellent choice for divers looking to scale up from beginner fins into intermediate level ones.

Pros:

  • The foot pocket on the Gara Professional fins is made from an extra soft elastomer plastic. You are going to get a higher level of comfort from these than you might get from other cheaper made fins.
  • The blade is a medium level of thickness which is great for the average freediver. You can get an optimal level of energy transfer without tiring out your feet due to the blades being too thick.
  • Along with being soft, the foot pockets for the Gara Professionals have been designed to be anatomically correct. This gives them a better fit than many other fins and means they are going to be more comfortably.

Biggest Con:

  • These fins are huge. They do a tremendous job of transferring energy and moving you forward. But, if you are a smaller person you may have some trouble using these.

Seac Shout Camo S700 Long Fins

Seac Shout Camo S700, Long Fins for Scuba Diving,...
12 Reviews
Seac Shout Camo S700, Long Fins for Scuba Diving,...
  • THINK ABOUT US: The size of the Seac Shout Camo...
  • PROLONGED USE: the Seac Shout Camo fins are...
  • DIMENSIONS AND SIZES: the Seac Shout Camo diving...
  • MADE IN ITALY: the Seac Shout Camo long fins are...

Seac is another company whose roots are found in spearfishing and freediving. Like Cressi, they are an Italian company with decades of experience producing quality diving equipment. They have been around since the early 1970s and have become well known in the spearfishing and freediving community. We really like the Seac Shout Camo S700 for its high-performance design and camouflage colors. It is a nice blend of function and design that doesn’t come at a break the bank price.

Pros:

  • One of the things that set the Seac Shout S700 fins apart from others is their unique design. They come in a grey or green camo pattern that gives them a cool look. You shouldn’t base your decision solely on how fins look. As we said before, comfort should be your number one priority. After that performance is an extremely close second. But, if you are looking for some camo colored fins to match your spearfishing wetsuit, these are a great option.
  • They have a full foot design which many freedivers prefer. This means they are going to fit on your feet much better and grip your feet better. If you have a preference for a full foot pocket, this is a good option.
  • The Seac Shout S700 fins are made from an incredibly durable composite plastic. This means they won’t break easily if you accidentally drop something on them or hit them on a rock or hard coral. If you are a beginner, these are a good option.

Biggest Con:

  • The biggest complaint that many people had with these is that they are quite heavy. You want fins that are going to be light and easy to move as this reduces the strain on your feet. If you are a smaller diver you may find these to be too heavy and tire you out quickly.

Cressi Gara 3000 LD Freediving Fins

Cressi Men's Gara 3000 LD Long Distane Long Blade...
68 Reviews
Cressi Men's Gara 3000 LD Long Distane Long Blade...
  • LD stands for Long Distance, indicating the main...
  • Less demanding than the Gara 2000 series fins.
  • Less muscle effort is required for kicking so...
  • The softer blade is also very suitable for use in...

As we’ve mentioned above, Cressi is one of the top companies in the industry. We like the fact that they started first as a spearfishing and freediving company. Their equipment has been designed by industry experts who actually participate in the sport. The Gara 3000s, like the Professionals listed above, are a great option for both beginners and advanced level divers. They are plastic and durable offered at a medium-range price.

Pros:

  • The LDs are less stiff than the base level Gara 3000 freediving fins. The reason for this is that these are designed to be used for longer periods of time before you tire. You can use these for hours without experiencing severe muscle fatigue. This is what also makes these a good option for beginner freedivers.
  • We like that Cressi has included a sturdy travel bag. One of the biggest issues with freediving fins is traveling with them. They are often long and bulky and quite difficult to store in a suitcase. Especially, if they are fiberglass or carbon fiber, the can break if mishandled (we’re looking at you airport baggage handlers). The travel bag allows you to keep them with you when you fly as it is carry on sized.
  • These are medium-priced fins great for intermediate and beginner divers. Many diving fins of equivalent quality can run significantly more. If you are looking to save money on quality fins, these are a good option.

Biggest con:

  • The main issue that many people have pointed out is that the feet are quite narrow. If you have a wide foot you may need to buy a size larger than you would normally use. Make sure you know your exact size before ordering these fins so you don’t have to exchange them. We recommend if you are ordering these for an upcoming trip that you leave yourself plenty of time in the event you do need to exchange them for a larger or smaller size..

Mares Pure Instinct Razor Pro Fins

Mares Pure Instinct Razor Pro Freedive Fin Size...
1 Reviews
Mares Pure Instinct Razor Pro Freedive Fin Size...
  • Foot Pocket incorporates comfort, technique, and...
  • One of the lightest free diving fins
  • Side ribs perfectly support the blade, channeling...
  • Prevent lateral slippage

Mares is another Italian brand that has been around for decades. Like Cressi, they have their origins in spearfishing and freediving. They are now a titan of the diving industry producing top quality products in a variety of underwater sports. We are fans of many of their products, including their freediving fins. The Pure Instinct Razor Pro freediving fins are a great option for intermediate divers but can also be used by beginners.

Pros:

  • They have an interchangeable blade design. This is great in the event that you break one of the blades and need to replace it. We also prefer interchangeable blades as they make it easier to perform maintenance on the fins.
  • These are one of the lightest sets of freediving fins on the market. If you are a smaller diver or if you have don’t have super strong legs, these can be a great choice. They will tire you much less quickly but still have solid energy transfer to give you optimal movement.
  • Soft foot pockets help to keep you comfortable. Foot pockets that are harder can rub your feet wrong and decrease the amount of time you can spend diving. With soft foot pockets, you can stay down longer without worrying about your feet being cut up or blistering.

Biggest Con:

  • The main complaint that we have is the sizing can run a bit large. You can counter this by ordering a size smaller than you would normally wear. This isn’t a major issue but if you are unaware of this, it can be a hassle if you have to return the fins for a different size.

What are some tips for your fins?

The main thing to remember is to stick to your current skill level. You can buy the most expensive fins on the market but they aren’t going to make you a better freediver. Also, as we mentioned above, more expensive fins are usually made from carbon fiber. These are more efficient for diving but are less durable and more prone to breaking.

As a new diver, you are probably going to make some mistakes. Most likely, you will come to close to some rocks or bang your fins on the seafloor. It does you no good to buy super expensive fins if you break them the first time out. Stick to your current skill level and you can’t go wrong.

One last point to make, if you are ordering fins for an upcoming trip, give yourself plenty of time for them to arrive. There is always the chance that you can order the wrong size or you don’t like the way they fit. You want to leave yourself plenty of time to get the correct size or change fins before your trip. You can read countless reviews of people whose trips have been ruined because they didn’t leave themselves enough time when they ordered a product. This goes for all diving equipment. But, fins specifically can be prone to this as they are worn on your feet and need to be comfortable.

In Conclusion

Freediving and spearfishing can be exciting underwater sports. Remember though that fins are going to be the most important purchase you make when it comes to freediving. So, don’t rush it. Do your homework and make sure to get fins that fit you perfectly. When you are freediving comfortably, you will be thankful you did.

Are you an experienced freediver? Have you used any of the above freediving fins? Let us know your thoughts in the comments section below. We always enjoy hearing from fellow freedivers. You also never know when something you say might help someone else.

Last update on 2019-12-08 at 05:06 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

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