“ Brand: ELC / Type: Outdoor Play Equipment „
SwimFin is one of the best buys ever! I bought a pink one for my daughter who was a little timid in the water. As soon as she put on the fin she wanted to get in and be a shark. I found her position in the water was good - it encouraged her to put her face in but she was in control at all times. The fact that her arms and legs are free meant she could swim naturally - rather than having something to hold onto or bulky armbands. Since then she's developed a natural swimming position and grown in confidence massively, thanks to the Fin.
Add to that the fact that it gives them more confidence and independence in the water as they aren't afraid of going under as it's on their back, unlike a float which is unnatural and slips out of their hands.
Surprisingly easy to get on and off too. If you take your child swimming, it's the best way to make sure they learn a good position in the water and grow in confidence.
I would strongly recommend this to any parent who has a child learning to swim.
I'm a complete mug for a gimmick, if it's an unusual way of doing something then I'll usually buy it regardless of whether or not it seems a genuinely good idea. This is how I came to be in possession of an ELC SwinFin, it looked fab in the shop and more importantly was a float designed to look like a sharks fin - how cool is that?! After paying my £21.99 (a non-fin float is a good tenner cheaper) I went home and offered to take Hollie swimming so we could try it out.
This was six months ago and since then the float has been used, erm, twice. While the (stupid) design might suit some children, Hollie (as a reasonably proficient swimmer for a four year old) was decidedly unhappy with it. The main issue for her were the straps, the SwinFin does up across the chest and the midriff and she found it very restrictive and 'annoying' (her word) - I'd set the straps to the perfect snugness against her body so I can only assume that it was the weight of the fin hanging off them which caused this, she couldn't properly articulate what the problem was but I have to say it looked extremely uncomfortable as I watched her make her way to the water.
The fin is made from EVA foam, which is pretty much the same stuff that the more traditional flat floats are made out of. The idea behind the design is that arm bands and swim rings keep the body too upright in the water, preventing children from learning how to move properly in the water and putting their bodies into a position that's not particularly helpful for learning the important skill of swimming. But then neither does the SwimFin, unless you work for the ELC marketing department. I can see the thinking behind the idea; after all, sharks have remained pretty much unchanged for millennia, but having a float shaped like an (immobile foam) fin does not make you shark-like, it just doesn't. In reality, what you have here is a fairly heavy *thing* attached to your back - as a land dwelling mammal, Hollie was neither comfortable nor impressed.
Watching her swim in it showed me that it didn't pull her into a comfortable swimming position at all, the buoyancy of the fin pulled her back into a strange kind of subtle V-shape which I could see her fighting as she swam. This, I suppose, is testament to how well the SwimFin will keep your kiddy afloat although is definitely not ideal for the young swimmer. The last time she used it was during a backstroke lesson with her dad, and we actually had a little more success this time - the float seemed to push her back upwards to keep her more vertical in the water, although when she turned over the fin unbalanced her in the water and sent her gambolling face first. Which impressed her no end.
It's having one star because I physically cannot give it any less - I shall dedicate that star to the fact that the SwimFin is pink, the colour of choice for both me and Hollie. It's an overpriced silly idea and if ELC wasn't such a nightmare to get to then I'd have returned it months ago - it hasn't even got 'another use', something to soften the blow of having been coerced into paying good money for a rubbish product. On the plus side it looks kinda cool (ie. pink and ever so slightly wacky) hanging on the hook in our downstairs bathroom - I suspect it will look equally cool when it's lying at the bottom of tomorrows bin bag.
SwimFin is the ultimate swimming aid - the first truly new development in the teaching of swimming for decades - tried and tested to assist anyone in learning to swim. Unlike armbands and swimming rings, which keep the body upright, SwimFin works in harmony with the body, helping to develop a better swimming position. Unlike kickboards and floats, SwimFin leaves the arms free to move, significantly speeding up the learning of front-crawl, breast-stroke and butterfly. It even works for back-stroke.Swimming lessons have never been this much fun.Children who were once afraid to get in the water, can?t resist trying on a SwimFin and taking a dip. The feeling of security encourages even the most nervous children to go-it-alone, swimming by themselves, often minutes after first trying one on. SwimFin is the only vertical, multi-stroke functional swimming aid in the world and works on any age and any ability.Made from tough and durable EVA foam. One size fits all, larger straps are recommended for larger-older children/adults.After use rinse with cold water and allow to dry.Warning: Will not protect against drowning-use only under constant competent supervision / Age range: From 2 years.