Here’s one of my three new Finis tools- the Positive Drive Fins. When I looked at these on their site and considered buying a pair to test I wasn’t sure if I could expect that much performance difference from my standard zoomers. But the moment after I slipped these on and took my first kick, I immediately felt a much  more effective and more realistic thrust and kick pattern.

These are an instant winner.

Here’s the short analysis:

– They permit great ankle flex, better than my zoomers.

– The ellipsoidal blade does permit a much tighter kick pattern, much more like my barefoot one, and in all four strokes. I love these for especially for dolphining because I can turn my feet inward just slightly.

– The thrust of these is snappy and full, but allows an even faster kick rate and more thrust per kick than my zoomers.

– They are much lighter and more compact than my zoomers, and fit more nicely in my swim bag because of it. I never take my heavy, bulky zoomers when traveling, but I would be tempted to take these along.

I love them.

They are so effective in producing thrust from a compact kick that I need to redesign how I do my kick sets with them.  I grew accustomed to the weight and extra load placed on my legs using the standard zoomers, and used them at slower speeds for leg conditioning. The PD Fins are light and zippy, and I have to go faster to get the same loading, but I can use a much more compact kick with higher cadence, which is more suitable to the kind I am trying to develop- both in 2-beat and in 6-beat for sprinting.

The one thing I found slightly uncomfortable is the closed toe slipper- the heel strap, though suitably adjustable, pushes my big toe all the way to the front of the slipper causing my big the toe to become a little sore ( I am sensitive there because of an old injury from a lead-climbing fall many years ago.) I loosened the heel strap and that helped- the straps don’t have to be tight. My pair of zoomers have an open toe and hug the foot between heel and top of the foot allowing the toes to be free, while these snug the foot between the heel strap and the toe pocket. Everyone has a different pattern for their toes so each will experience this part of the design differently.

I have a 7.5 to 8 US size foot, or about 39-40 in Euro sizing- so I ordered the size L according to the Finis sizing chart. These are just right for my foot, except for the pressure on the big toes. With the perfect amount of pressure on the sides of my feet I am not sure I could squeeze into a smaller pair though that might remove the pressure from my toes. Since they are held to the foot between heel strap and toe pocket a bigger size would actually make that discomfort for me even greater. Just a personal issue though.

I think for many, once you try these, you may not want to go back to standard zoomers unless you have a special reason to use them. I didn’t expect this kind of satisfaction from a new design in fins, but this did it.

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