Whether you’re a world away or close to home, your Bodyboard Accessories will give you the best surfing. Featured here are the Stealth Swimfins and fin savers giving good performance and safety a long way from shore over coral reef
Bodyboard Accessories give you a proven advantage in the surf. If you check the performance of the world champions and progressive riders you can see it’s all enhanced by their accessories. Yet you can ride your bodyboard completely free. No leash, no fins. It’s great to have this freedom. So why use accessories? It’s all about performance.
While there’s a great range of accessories to power your boarding, within the accessories themselves there’s great variety to match your style, skill and progression. For example within Bodyboard Fins you get a selection from short and long, symmetrical and asymmetrical, wide and thin, stiff and soft. Each giving you different ride and performance characteristics.
So let’s check your accessory options.
Nature is often referenced as the inspiration for surf gear, including dolphin fins both dorsal and rear. Here’s Nife Fins showing the connection between the paddle power of seagulls feet and their Nife N2 fins design
Bodyboard fins come in a variety of design shapes. Each shape has it’s own rationale in terms of the performance advantage it gives you.
Symmetrical vs Asymmetrical
Symmetrical fins on the left. Asymmetrical fins on the right. Symmetrical fins, being smaller in size, are primarily used to facilitate drop knee surfing so you can more easily get your foot up on your board. Asymmetrical fins aid your surfing control and provide more propulsive area. Nife N2 fins on the left, Limited Edition Sylock fins in the right
Bodyboard fins fall into two main shape categories.
Symmetrical fins are those where your left and right fin are identical. So unless indicated, you can swap them between your feet.
Asymmetrical fins are those that have a specific shape for each foot. The left and right are a mirror of each other.
The reasoning behind the two different types of fins comes down to how you want to surf and perform.
If you want to have a lot of drive, hold and carve in your surfing, asymmetrical fins are recommended. This is because the outside edge of the fin forms a virtual rail with that of your board. As a skilled rider you can extend the rail of your board with your fin. So you can perform longer more carving turns that a longer rail enables.
Symmetrical fins are recommended if you want to do drop knee surfing. This is where you lift a knee onto your board. It’s a very different Bodyboarding feel and opens up different moves for you. Symmetrical fins assist with this as they’re shorter, smaller, easier to get up onto your board. They’re also recommended if you have any problems in your joints. So the symmetrical shape expends your energy more evenly across your body reducing strain on any specific part.
Propulsion is what fins are all about. On the left check the water flow around these bodyboarders as they power out to the break. Small bow waves indicate their fast progress and note no foam or splash from their fins as each kick is most directly transferred into power. On the right, what you can do with your fin’s propulsion and wave power. Fins are a great Bodyboard accessory
Fin features include channels, edges, ribs, and treatments of the front of the blade.
With asymmetrical fins, most brands follow the proven pattern of the extended and reinforced outer edge.
Symmetrical fins offer a few different features such as outward and inward projections of the blade and different treatments of their blade edges. All are said to aid propulsion and control in some way. For example very pronounced edges and center spine aid control, your ability to direct yourself on the wave with your fins. Stiffening of the blade aids propulsion power.
Fit & Comfort
In terms of fin stiffness most fins feature the use of dual or multi construction compounds, construction normally being of rubber. So a softer rubber or blend is used for your foot sock, with a stiffer blend used for your blade. In this way your foot gets comfort with a soft fit while your blade doesn’t bend and pushes as much water with each kick as possible.
Over-riding these types of performance issues is comfort. If your fin isn’t comfortable, if you are uncomfortable, you won’t be able to stay in the water very long and your performance will be limited. So comfort is directly related to fit.
You need to try on your fin instore along with any other Bodyboard accessories you’ll be using, like a fin sock. If your fins are too tight pressing on your toes, or too lose wobbling on your ankles, you’ll have problems. Fit has to be just right.
Different fin brands also have different foot sock shapes. Some are long and thin, others wider and shorter. So ultimately in choosing your fins start with comfort, which means trying on a set of fins. Then look at the type of surfing you want to do, drop knee or not, and what fin features will best support that.
Fin socks are neoprene socks that help reduce chaffing and give comfort when you wear your bodyboard fins, especially over long periods. These Creatures of Leisure Fin Sox Lo cut and Fin Sox High cut indicate how you can wear the sock. So you can have it minimalist or higher up on your ankle. Creatures does a great job with their Bodyboard Accessories with extra heavy duty stitching and dobbies on the sox base increasing durability and protection
Closely associated with Bodyboard fins are fin socks. These are neoprene socks that you wear inside your fins. So you get provide protection from the rubbing of fins and they can assist with getting a great fit. Once wet the neoprene provides a smoother feel in your fin sock than the rubber directly on your skin that often pinches.
Fin socks come in a different styles. There’s long and short socks, ankle-only, and those like booties. Come instore so you can check out which work best for you and if they’re an option or necessity for getting maximum best fit and fin comfort.
On the left, the bicep leash, worn above your elbow, is the most popular bodyboarding leash. The wrist leash on the right was the first bodyboard leash style and is also widely used. Shown are the Creatures of Leisure Superlite Bicep Leash on the left, the Ocean and Earth Basic Bodyboard Wrist Coil on the right
To spend the most time surfing, and not swimming after your board, a leash is recommended Bodyboard Accessory.
Leashes come in two options. A wrist leash and the bicep leash.
The wrist leash is the original and is attached to your wrist. So it works great and allows easy retrieval of your board after a wipeout as you can flip the cord into your hand and easily pull your board to you. The drawback is that the leash cuff and cord and pretty much constantly entering and dragging through the water with your hand. So with every stroke they’re creating extra drag.
Bicep leashes are worn above your elbow. These are not just wrist leashes moved up your arm, and they include specific features. It keeps your cuff and a lot of the cord out of the water as you paddle eliminating drag from these. It does require a dedicated movement to grab the cord and retrieve your board after a wipeout.
Both leash types can have long and short, thick and thin cords depending on the type of waves you’ll be riding. So a thin cord is suitable for smaller easier waves. A thick cord is a necessity for bigger heavier waves. When checking your Bodyboard Accessories a nicely padded cuff is a benefit for comfort.
These are a great way to extend the life of your Bodyboard.
Protection of your board is paramount as a wrong bang can create weakness bringing on delamination of your board. A bag also protects from heat, another great de-laminator. It also protects from wax and substances that can adhere to your slick reducing your performance.
A bag also gives you a great way to carry your board. So a hand handle is super handy, with most giving padded comfort. A shoulder strap and back-pack straps give functionality, allowing you to keep your hands free. This is super handy. So you can use your free hands for carrying your passport, or another board or bag, or drink or food.
Your Bodyboard Accessories
This is a quick overview of some of the main Bodyboard accessories. So check our website and come in store to get more information and get hands on with the accessories that will boost your Bodyboarding performance.