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Less arm paddling: kneeboarding & surfing fins

Mike uses shinfinTM fins to paddle less with his arms when kneeboarding and stand-up surfing. This is especially important for Mike’s rotator cuff shoulder problem and for other arm and shoulder injuries. Also, they don’t aggravate a bunion on Mike’s toe, unlike regular fins.

Mike’s review from Bend, Oregon, USA

“Cheers, they work good.”

Mike’s review: Kneeboarding & stand-up surfing fins for less arm paddling

“I am a kneeboarder and also stand up surfer. Any specific instructions for use for this sport? I wear a full suit. I switched to kneeboarding due to a rotator cuff problem, I need to paddle less with arms, and now regular swim fins aggravate a “bunionette” on my little toe joint. Hoping another method of swimming will result in less aggravation.”

“BTW, I liked the website and found ordering easy.”


Thank you for your comments and questions. I think the main thing to remember is to use a streamlined kick with straighter legs, like normal swimming (different to the kick that people often do with foot fins, which has more knee-bend). If you are not used to this streamlined swimming kick, it might take some time to build up your strength and technique for it.

Power comes from the big muscles in your thighs and torso, and not so much from your ankles and calf muscles. Experiment to find your best body balance position with the fins off the end of the board and kick with fairly straight legs. You should be able to kick and hand paddle at the same time – and so share the effort. Or you can hold the board with your hands and kick with your legs a bit further back off the board.

Position the fins on your leg so the fin tip centre reaches the end of your middle toe, or perhaps even lower for more power. Experiment with this position. Make sure the straps hold the fins snugly around your leg. This keeps the fins stiffer and more powerful. See the fitting instructions on for more details.

I hope this helps you. Let me know how you go.


“Cheers, they work good.  I’ve had to move away from the coast, very sad indeed. But they are good in the pool, I like the way that they work for laps and training for the day I go back to surf.”


You can paddle less with your arms when you use shinfinTM fins for kneeboarding and stand-up surfing. This is especially important if you have any injuries or weaknesses in your arms, shoulders or back, as shown in this review about back pain rehabilitation. So you can give your shoulders, arms, ankles and feet a rest, to stay out longer and catch more waves!

Also, they don’t aggravate your ankles, feet or bunions like regular fins do. You can use them for faster paddling and wave catching bodyboarding too. They are also great fins for bodysurfing.