When Aka Lyman was on his way to becoming Hawaii’s favorite drop knee rider in the 1990s, he was also studying how to make the world’s best swim fins. He initially thought of a design that could survive the heaviest of Hawaiian waves, but he also wanted something that could help any rider perform drop knee maneuvers with more ease.
This is how he came up with the Kicks Fins design: a versatile and comfortable pair of fins that is perfect when you’re out bodyboarding, swimming, or even lifeguarding.
When Aka Lyman designed Kicks Fins, he wanted something that could deliver high performance in the heaviest water conditions, but should also be comfortable enough to use for regular water activities. Thus, the Kicks Fins were born.
Kicks Fins have a lot of drive and power due to its rounded blade and sloping side rails. It was designed to give drop knee riders an added boost so they can harness more momentum when going off the lip. While this fin design was made primarily for drop knee riding, it also provides more power to prone riders because of the amount of flex derived from the natural rubber construction.
The Kicks Fins were made to be worn in the water. This is why they integrated the most comfortable foot pocket design available, so you can simply slip them on without worries of them slipping off in the water. The foot pockets are the same for both left and right feet so you don’t have to worry about putting on the wrong fin.
Kicks Fins were designed after DaFin, but with some tweaking to add more functionality to the fin. Kicks are made with the name natural Malaysian rubber as DaFin, but the foot pocket was designed to be softer to give the rider a competitive advantage. When you don’t have to worry about getting blisters on your feet, you’ll be more confident in any wave condition and you will have more headspace to improve your riding ability. In the word of Aka Lyman himself, Kicks kick ass!
- Best foot pocket design in the market
- Unique flex design
- Floats in the ocean
- Made of high grade Malaysian rubber
- Feels more natural in the water
- No difference between right and left fin
- Natural rubber durometers
- Ultra lightweight
- More power and drive
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Check out Kicks Fins main man Aka Lyman as he rips the sh!t out these waves with his Kicks fins!
DaFins were developed by one of Australia’s bodyboarding pioneers, Andy Cochran. Cochran worked with two other legendary watermen, Mark Cunningham and Brian Keaulana, and they came up with swim fins that could power through the heaviest conditions and still deliver high performance like a breeze. The DaFin design was an instant hit, especially among watermen, lifeguards and high performance riders. In the highly acclaimed bodysurfing film, Come Hell or High Water, DaFin was featured as the swim fins of choice.
When swim fins are designed for lifeguards so they may be able to perform their ocean rescue duties exceptionally, you know that those fins will speak volumes about power. When your job is to provide a certain level safety for everyone in the ocean, power is something you cannot compromise. Thus, when Cochran envisioned the DaFin design, he refined the typical swim fin design by creating low angle wedge-type fins called “strakes.” When you’re on the down stroke, the strakes keep the water from flowing off the exterior edge of the fin, thus giving you more room for acceleration. The elevated foot pocket also adds more power to every thrust and kick, giving you machine-like consistency in the water.
The foot pocket of DaFins is made of rubber with a lower durometer or hardness than that of the foot plate. This makes the bottom plate stiff enough to transfer power to the blade, while maintaining a softer foot pocket for more comfort. You don’t need to wear foot socks or booties when you’re wearing DaFins.
Aside from power and comfort, DaFins are known to generate unbelievable speeds in the water. The unique strakes allow water to jettison more efficiently from the foot blades, thus amplifying your ability to accelerate even in the toughest waves and most turbulent of waters. The foot pocket is slightly raised so that you can easily perform any type of maneuver, whether you’re gliding down the face of a wave or hitting ramp sections and projecting yourself off the wave.
- Known for maximum drive and power
- Made of high grade Malaysian rubber
- Low angle wedge-type fins for power
- Slightly raised V-shaped foot pocket for acceleration
- Low durometer foot pocket
- High durometer foot blade
- Performs well in the toughest conditions
- Ultra Durable
- Endorsed by the United States Lifesaving Association (USLA)
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What sets these fins apart from the rest?
Pioneers known to be the best at what they do designed these fins. The likes of Aka Lyman and Andy Cochran relied on years of day-to-day experience in the water, rendering them the only true experts at their field. Nothing can substitute first-hand knowledge and skill when creating swim fins suitable for the heaviest waves and trickiest water conditions.
Moreover, DaFins are the only swim fins officially endorsed by the United States Lifesaving Association (USLA). If DaFins are good enough for a premier association of professional lifeguards and ocean rescuers, they should be more than perfect for the everyday rider.
What are these fins perfect for and made for?
Kicks Fins and DaFins are perfect for everyday water activities like swimming, bodysurfing and bodyboarding. But because they were designed thoughtfully by some of the cleverest watermen in the world, they are made for high performance settings, water safety, and lifesaving.
Who should buy these?
Professionals and everyday riders who want an extra boost in their kicks and thrusts should buy these fins. If you are a drop knee rider, the Kicks Fins should do the trick.