Steve, a below knee amputee, definitely feels the extra propulsion from fitting one shinfinTM fin on his short 6 inch stump and the other fin on his other leg. This is because both fins combine to smooth his swimming stroke. They streamline his entire body and give him a smooth propulsion throughout his kick. They work so well that he finds he needs to tell his amputee friends, and others too.
Steve’s review from Newhall, USA
“My amputation is 6 inches below the knee. I could definitely feel the difference, mostly in the amount of additional propulsion. Yea, I really like these suckers. I try to promote them all the time. They work so well, I feel I need to let ohers know about them, especially my amputee friends. They are the bomb.”
Steve’s review: Propulsive fins for below knee amputee with short stump
“Someone showed them to me at a swim clinic at our amputee conference. I used a regular fin (on my good foot) and the shinfinTM fin on my amputated leg. I didn’t think to use two of your fins, but I could definitely feel the difference, mostly in the amount of additional propulsion. So I knew I had to get them for myself. I know using a pair will be even better! I can’t wait until they get here.”
Thank you for your reply Steve and for your order. Are you an above knee amputee or a below knee amputee? What length is your stump?
“My amputation is 6 inches below the knee, so it was a bit tough to find the “perfect” location. I only weigh 130 lbs, so my leg is not that big around. But I only used it for half an hour. I’m sure I’ll figure it out once I’ve had some time to monkey with it. I have a website and new invention that I am marketing for amputees. If you go to my website you will learn and understand my desire to help other amputees control their pain without nasty side effects.”
Many thanks for your kind reply Steve. You should receive your own fins sometime next week. We have many lower limb amputees using shinfinTM fins around the world and we get great feedback. It depends on the person of course but many amputees can pretty much get back to swimming as normal with shinfinTM fins, finding them very beneficial. Good hip movement helps and shinfinTM fins help to develop this too. With below knee amputees like yourself, and as you have probably already felt, the knee joint helps to control the angle of the fin a bit more. But above knee amputees still usually find the fins very beneficial too.
Fitting the fin on your lower leg stump is probably the best position if you can. As you found, your 6 inch stumps should be enough for this. (There are ways of adapting the fit to shorter stumps.) Alternatively, you can fit the fin on your thigh with the straps just above your knee. We have amputee customers doing both. It depends on your body flexibility and joint movements as to which is best for you. You can experiment with this, and also with the angle of the fins around your legs.
Best to wear both fins
I think you’ll find it best to use both fins. The fins give extra kick power, encourage and stabilise a streamlined body position, and lift legs horizontal to reduce drag (even for slow kicking and gliding). The fins can be worn in different positions on each leg. The idea is to balance the down kick of one leg with the upkick of the other. The fins will also help get more power from the arm strokes because the left leg kicking down diagonally balances the force of the right arm pull, and vice versa. You can experiment with the height and angle of the fins around your legs to optimise your stroke.
The shinfinTM fins will help to lift your legs to a horizontal streamlined swimming position (on your front or on your back), even if you don’t kick. If you then kick a little bit, the shinfinTM fins will guide you towards the correct swimming kick. The shinfinTM fins do this because they have a natural flex that matches a good kicking style for freestyle, backstroke or fly. They encourage you to use the large muscles in your thighs, buttocks and torso and so help to build muscle tone in these areas. (Foot flippers are quite different as they require much more knee bend, and strain your feet, ankles and calf muscles). I hope this helps Steve.
“Yea, I really like these suckers. I try to promote them all the time. They work so well, I feel I need to let ohers know about them, especially my amputee friends. I would have to say the only drawback is they pull the hair on my legs a bit getting them off, but they are the bomb.”
Great to hear you find they work so well, fitting one below your knee on your 6 inch stump and the other on your shin. And thank you for spreading the shinfinTM word especially amongst your amputee friends. Personal recommendation is the best thing for helping a new idea like this along, so I really appreciate it. Can I ask a favour please? Would you mind if I put some extracts from your emails on the website?
“You are welcome to use any of my comments at your discretion.”
Thank you for your kind permission Steve. Personal recommendation is very important to help a new product like this along, so I really appreciate it. I’d be interested to hear how you feel the fins benefit you from a fitness, flexibility and strength point of view whenever you get a chance to email me. Happy swimming!
If you are a single below knee amputee, you will feel the extra propulsion from fitting one shinfinTM fin on your stump (even if it is quite short) and the other fin on your other leg. This is because both fins combine to streamline your entire body and smooth your swimming stroke. So they encourage smooth propulsion during your kick. You will likely feel them working so well that you will tell your amputee friends about them, and everyone else as well. They fit with or without a wetsuit too.
Other below knee amputee reviews show a comparison of one and two fins, regaining the ability to swim in the pool with their kids, lap swimming and triathlon training. This quad amputee has reviewed them for snorkeling and with a surfboard. A further review from an able-bodied person illustrates the whole leg kick for snorkeling.