Fins & Boots
Beware of Fin Hyperbole
Fin designs are an aspect of dive equipment that seem more like fashion trends, and there seems to always be someone promoting "a better mousetrap." Most of these elaborate fin designs work fine when used to move forward at a modest speed using a flutter scissor kick, and the split fin design tests especially well in this regard. However, many designs are poor if you wish to frog kick or use almost any of the swimming techniques preferred by experienced divers in tight spaces. Even with a full scissor kick, the fancy fins are weak when swimming all out against current, or working to overcome the drag of a drysuit or technical equipment. Full foot pockets and elaborate heel strap systems are also more likely to cause the loss of a fin in forceful swimming.
We've always been mystified by the preference for fancy fins, but then we saw a video of a large number of divers swimming in a variety of different fin designs and had an epiphany. Many of these fancy fins actually do seem to help swimmers with very poor swimming technique, particularly if the diver is using a kick that looks like they are pedaling a bicycle. Be skeptical of those "fin performance reviews" that favor the casual recreational diver; many experienced divers who have learned how to swim properly will choose a versatile no-frills open-heel fin design with a stiff blade and a strong, reliable spring strap at an affordable price.