Swim Gear Shopping Guide – What You Need To Take Your Stroke To The Next Level
Whether you’re in the market to complete more laps or want to train for a triathlon, there are many swimming tools that’ll help you reach new lengths (sorry, we couldn’t resist the pool pun). With so much swim gear, all designed to help you improve your form, increase your strength, and make you a better swimmer overall, shopping for the right products can be a daunting experience.
Which products should you choose to take your abilities in the water to the next level? This helpful swim gear shopping guide is designed to help you find the top-of-the-line items that really deliver.
Upper Body Swim Gear
There’s a wide range of swim products available to help you build that all-important upper body strength and improve the power of every stroke. Some of the best items in this category are paddles, gloves, and buoys.
With FINIS Agility Hand Paddles, which are strapless strength paddles, you can hone in on your form, while also building the strength of your upper body. Basically, because there aren’t any straps on these paddles, if you end up using the wrong technique while you swim, your paddles will end up falling off of your hands. This means that you can gain insight into whether or not you’re truly using the proper technique, and you really need to focus on your form as you swim.
As you practice nailing your technique every time you get in the pool, proper form will become second nature. You can use these paddles to work on all four swim strokes, improving your positioning and enhancing your upper body strength at the same time. Plus, you can also use these paddles to maintain the right palm positive hand position too.
The durable FINIS Agility Hand Paddles are ergonomically designed, and they feature a convex shape. These details help teach you Early Vertical Forearm position, thereby allowing you to boost your stroke efficiency. And the fact that there aren’t any uncomfortable or inconvenient straps to contend with make this an attractive choice.
The Speedo Power Plus Paddle is a versatile tool for resistance training, and it’s designed to be suitable for all levels of swimmers. These paddles feature textured EVA foam, scalloped edges that make for a smooth pulling trajectory, multiple strapping options, and plenty of holes that let the water pass through and provide the ideal amount of resistance. Plus, they come in four sizes (small, medium, large, and x-large).
These hand paddles are easy to use whenever you want to build upper body strength. In addition to helping you increase your muscular strength, though, these paddles can help you improve your hand position as well, which means you can also use them to enhance your strokes.
The scalloped edges are perfect for allowing you to push more water to achieve smoother pulling. Whether your aim is to vary your strokes while you train, you’re focused on pure resistance training, or you’re doing drill work, the Speedo Power Plus Paddles will help you get the job done right.
In addition to using swim paddles, you can opt to use swim gloves to effectively increase the strength of your upper body. The InnoGear Swim Gloves are a perfect example of a pair of neoprene swim gloves that can help you create a better water resistance training program. These will really strengthen and tone the muscles you need to work on in order to improve your abilities as a swimmer.
These swim gloves feature an adjustable wrist closure to help you get the most comfortable fit, and they also have webbed fingers. When used properly, you’ll notice that these gloves increase your propulsion through the water. But you’ll also feel a greater amount of resistance while you swim, so you’ll be able to work on strengthening your muscles while getting a great cardio workout as well.
Wearing swim gloves while you train can help you achieve a smoother movement as you make your way through the water. However, unlike paddles that force you to use proper stroke technique and correct form in your arms and hands, the gloves may not give you the feedback necessary to learn and maintain perfect form – this is something to consider when shopping for these swim tools.
Yet another swim tool that you can use to effectively boost your upper body strength is the Speedo Team Pull Buoy Training Aid. This product, which is appropriate for swimmers of all levels, will force you to use your upper body muscles because you have to hold it in between your legs while you swim. This means you can’t use your legs to propel yourself through the water.
Use this product to hone in on your alignment and stroke technique, as well as your rotation. The Speedo Team Pull Buoy Training Aid, which measures 7” x 9” x 2”, is constructed from durable, soft EVA foam. It will elevate your legs and hips to help you achieve correct positioning in the water as you swim. You can perform any stroke with this pull buoy, and you’ll be able to boost the power of your shoulders and arms as you execute this workout.
To use the Speedo Team Pull Buoy correctly, all you have to do is position it between the tops of your thighs. To keep the buoy in position, you’ll need to press your legs together, but you’ll notice that this product helps keep your lower body elevated in the water as well. Then, you can enhance your pull technique and increase muscular strength in your upper body because, again, you won’t be kicking your legs at all.
The FINIS Axis Buoy is a great choice when you’re aiming to build your upper body strength. It will support your lower body in the water, allowing you to maintain correct alignment while you swim, and it will also immobilize your legs so that you can focus all of your attention on pulling yourself through the water using only your upper body muscles.
The FINIS Axis Buoy is different from the Speedo Team Pull Buoy Training Aid because, in addition to positioning it between your thighs and holding it there while you swim, it also features two holes for your ankles to slip into. Therefore, this product actually doubles as a pull buoy and an ankle float. When used correctly, you can build your upper body muscles, as well as engage your core, making for an effective workout in the water. Plus, you can easily slip it off of your ankles and position it between your thighs while you’re in the water, thanks to its innovative design.
Constructed from durable, lightweight, and slightly textured EVA foam, and featuring a contoured and ergonomic design, this buoy will stay securely in place, and you can choose between leaving it on your ankles or bringing it up to the legs. It also comes in different sizes so that you can select the one that will fit your body best.
Lower Body Swim Gear
To become a strong swimmer, you also need to build up the strength of your lower body muscles—and with kickboards and swim fins, you can do just that.
Incorporating the use of a kickboard like the Speedo Team Kickboard is a smart way to boost your leg strength. Doing so can help you maintain proper form as you propel yourself more powerfully through the water, regardless of what stroke you’re performing.
As a multi-use swim training tool, this kickboard can be used when executing kicking drills that can strengthen the legs and allow you to swim faster. The fleece-lined Speedo Team Kickboard is made using textured, lightweight EVA foam. It also features finger grooves on the underside so that you can get a nice, no-slip grip. And there are also side finger scallops that can assist you in achieving and maintaining the correct hand position comfortably as well.
On top of being able to increase the strength and endurance of your legs, the right kickboard, like the Speedo Team Kickboard, can also help you improve your balance in the water, as well as improve your kick stroke. By holding the kickboard with your hands, you can isolate your leg muscles and use only those muscles to move yourself through the water, regardless of what swim style you’re practicing.
The FINIS Alignment Kickboard features a hydrodynamic design that helps you achieve a streamlined position while you’re in the water. To get into the perfect alignment, from your fingertips to your toes, you can simply submerge this kickboard so that it lies a few inches below the surface. Doing so can also help to reduce the amount of stress placed on the shoulders and low back. Then, you can target the lower body muscles, as well as the core, effectively.
This small kickboard, which is constructed from durable EVA foam, features a convenient stabilizing strap, making it helpful when it comes to maintaining alignment and control without having to grip too hard. Rather than having to grab onto the sides of the board, you can slip your hands in easily. Pair this swim tool with your snorkel so that you can also keep your head in correct alignment as you go.
Whether you use this kickboard for side kicking, standard kicking, or one arm drills, it will help you learn how to maintain the right form to further improve your swimming abilities, no matter your current level.
Wearing a pair of swim fins, like the Speedo Biofuse Swim Training Fins, is another effective way to build strength in your legs while improving your speed in the water. The stiff blade on these fins can help you build strength and power, and the soft, non-chafing foot pocket is contoured for extra comfort.
These latex-free fins are designed to have a natural feel, and they come in sizes that range from XX-Small to XX-Large. They’re made using durable silicone that can withstand chlorine and exposure to sunlight. Plus, the Biofuse design construction, which is trademarked by Speedo, combines both soft and hard silicone to further boost both comfort and performance.
Wear these fins, which boast a short blade design, while you train in order to boost your power and balance your kicking tempo with your arm stroke. You can even use them to promote a natural kick, improve your stroke technique and ankle flexibility, and boost your propulsion.
Kiefer Training Swim Fins are another option when you want to get a better lower body workout in the water. These unisex fins are simple to slip on and take off, and they also float to the surface so that you can grab them easily.
These swim fins, which are made from high-quality rubber, feature a foot pocket that is flexible and soft, making them comfortable enough to wear for long periods of time in the pool. And the closed ankle also helps provide additional support.
The firm blade on these swim fins is curved and short, helping to improve the efficiency of every kick, while also helping you increase the strength of your kicks. And because Kiefer Training Swim Fins can even help prevent overtraining of the muscles, you can really focus your attention on your form while you train.
Full Body Swim Gear
When you want to optimize the time you spend in the pool, there are full body swim tools that you can use to build strength in your upper body, lower body, and core. The right resistance training system can deliver the low-impact workout that will allow you to become an even better swimmer.
The AquaLogix Total Body System is a complete system that you can use in the water to build strength throughout your body. No matter what your fitness level, you can utilize these tools for cardio and strength training your upper body, lower body, and core.
Use the blue bells or fins for maximum resistance when performing a power training or dynamic strength workout in the pool. Choose the black bells for a fast tempo workout that will engage the muscles throughout your body, including your core, while increasing your heart rate. And select the green fins or bells to also do fast tempo movements, this time targeting the legs and arms.
With this system, you can transform your pool into a gym and achieve a high-intensity workout that’s also low-impact on the joints. And because the resistance is based on how fast you move (the faster you move, the more resistance is created), you can tweak your workout, as needed, to suit your body and reduce your risk of injury.
This system includes aqua bells, which allow you to build strength in your core and upper body, while also giving you a great cardio workout for stamina. There are also aqua fins that you can easily wrap around your wrists or ankles for resistance exercises that will help target your core, lower body, and upper body.
With the Training Lace Swimming Stroke Training Weight Wrist Set, you can increase your endurance, strength, and power, as well as improve your buoyancy and balance. If you’re in search of a system that will help your muscles not only strengthen, but also adapt, to the resistance of the water, this set can help you swim farther and faster.
Featuring a weighted core that is specially designed, this full body training tool includes two 8-ounce training laces that you can wear on your ankles or wrists. These help you maintain proper form while you work on building strength and stamina. Easy to use, all you have to do is bend a Training Lace, which is flexible, so that it fits around your ankle or wrist comfortably.
When used to enhance your workout in the water, the Training Lace Swimming Stroke Training Weight Wrist Set can help you achieve even more powerful strokes and more efficient kicks, as well as improve muscle memory. As you get stronger, you can even choose heavier weights so that you can continue challenging your muscles in new ways.
The Reliable Outdoor Gear Swimming Belt is for those who want to improve their strength and stamina in the water so that they can become faster, stronger swimmers. This kit includes a nylon belt and an elastic tether, along with an 8” nylon parachute, which won’t get in your way when you execute flip turns, work on your kicks, and perform a range of strokes.
The 7’ bungee tether is capable of giving you the appropriate amount of tension for static swim. The parachute, however, is great for sprinting. When you want to do a static swim, just anchor the cord to your pool. When you want to do laps, simply detach the cord and add the parachute.
Whether you’re in a small pool or a large one, this product can go with you for both resistance training and in-place training. It’s lightweight and fast-drying, and the nylon belt can be adjusted up to 38” to fit your waist comfortably.
Pool Tech for Technique
Finally, there’s easy-to-use pool tech, designed to help you improve your technique so that you can become the best swimmer possible.
If you’re in search of a simple tool that you can use to build strength in the water, check out the FINIS Tech Toc Hip Trainer. You just have to wear it around your waist in order to receive feedback about your stroke, thus helping you learn and maintain correct hip position for all swim strokes.
The FINIS Tech Toc Hip Trainer consists of a ball bearing located inside a plastic capsule, and it uses acoustic amplifiers that will make a sound when the trainer is tipped from one side to the other as you swim. You’ll be able to hear this feedback and adjust your position and stroke rhythm accordingly whenever necessary. You can even use the delay setting to delay the ball bearing and force you to exaggerate your hip rotation.
This is a great tool to use when you want to improve your form and stroke rhythm. You’ll even end up engaging your core and hip muscles, thereby building strength in those areas as well.
Working on the alignment of your spine and head while you’re in the water can be challenging, but with the help of the FINIS Swim Posture Trainer, you can change that and improve all of your swim strokes.
To use the FINIS Swim Posture Trainer, simply secure it to the center of the back of your head. It’s one size fits all, and you can choose to wear it with or without goggles. Constructed from HDPE plastic, this swim tool is resistant to both UV and chlorine.
You won’t feel the Posture Trainer until you fall out of the correct posture range. If your alignment is off, you’ll feel it on the back of your shoulders as an indication that your posture needs to be adjusted. By correcting your form, you can elevate your hips, reduce drag, and boost your propulsion through the water.
With the FINIS Forearm Fulcrom, you can basically connect your hand and forearm so that they form a single surface that doesn’t allow your wrist to bend as you swim. This helps you develop stroke muscle memory the right way, and it reduces stress on the shoulders, too.
This set of paddles, which feature an open figure eight design, helps boost stroke efficiency by allowing you to use your entire forearm, from fingertips to elbow, with every pull. The more you use this product, the more muscle memory you’ll achieve to ensure correct forearm, wrist, and hand position.
In all four competitive swim strokes, this product will promote Early Vertical Forearm, and it will allow you to feel the water against the palm of your hand and forearm. The FINIS Forearm Fulcrom is an ideal tool for anyone who wants to refine their strokes and work on their technique.
Shopping for the Right Swim Gear Doesn’t Have to Be Confusing
From swim tools that are geared towards training you for proper alignment in the water, to those that are designed to help you build strength, there are a variety of products to choose from that will suit swimmers of all levels and ages.