Among the most important tools for underwater exploration are your scuba diving fins. It’s tough to move around down there without them.
Dive fins are also among the most difficult scuba equipment to select for the beginning diver. Most especially because before you gain diving experience you really don’t know what your preferred diving style is.
And different diving styles require different types of flipper.
Your local dive shop rents the equipment you need to complete your in water courses. Except for your mask, fins, and snorkel (the snorkel is not a “must have” piece of gear for scuba diving). Those basic diving tools aren’t normally included in the rental package.
When you sign up for that first diver certification class you’ll buy the mask and fins.
Dive shop personnel help with your initial selections. They know how to test the fit of a mask so it seals to your face, and won’t leak. They know how to choose the proper size dive boot, and which fin that boot best fits into.
(Open heel fins require a dive boot for proper function and comfort. Most scuba divers prefer the open heel style of fin for diving.)
Getting an ideally fitting fin is easy enough. That don’t mean you’re getting the fin that promises the highest level of comfort, or functionality, for the diving style that you’ll eventually settle into.
Since you don’t know at the beginning which style of diving you’ll most prefer over time you can’t know what type of fin will suit you for most of your underwater excursions.
The style of diving you start your diving life with won’t be the same style that you settle into once you gain experience, and figure out which kind of diving you most enjoy.
Some divers want to see as much of the reef as they can every time they descend into the depths. They spend most of their dive finning around from one area of the reef to another.
Other divers want to see as much of one spot on the reef as they can. These divers hover over one position of the reef, studying that place to see every bit of aquatic activity that goes on right there.
Some divers prefer to explore wrecks. They must use compact finning styles for swimming through small holes and hatches.
Cave divers use a frog style finning technique that allows better propulsion in tight places.
Cave and wreck divers are constantly on the move much like those divers I mentioned who fin around visiting different places on the reef, but the variety in finning technique dictates the fin style.
Some divers like speed. Some prefer a laid back slow dive. Some divers get maximum pleasure just floating around in the anti-gravity like atmosphere of the undersea realm.
During your diving life you’ll change fins, and some divers change fins many times. You might keep multiple pairs of flippers in your dive bag for different diving conditions.
As you gain diving experience your best option is try different styles to learn which fins work best for you, and your diving preference. Borrow different types from your dive friends, and experience them before you decide what kinds you need.
With experience, and use, you’ll learn which scuba diving fins best suit your style of scuba.