There are a few things that every scuba diver must have – A nice mask and snorkel and a good pair of quality fins. Having a good pair of fins impacts the outcome of your dive significantly. If you own a pair of poorly fit diving fins it can cause pains in your foot, have long term affects on your other joints, and be a highly inefficient waste of energy. You also want to consider tailoring your fin choice to your environment to compensate for currents, long surface swims and the length of your dive. As there are so many styles of diving you can definitely expect to own more than one pair of fins to maximize your efficiency; which after all is the ultimate goal, to save air and be streamlined in the water. You have fins for snorkeling, cold water diving, warm water diving, drift diving, teaching, and many more. Your fin choice should be as meticulous as a hockey player’s choice of stick curvature. No one fin is right for every type of diving environment.
Contradictory to my previous statement, Scubapro has decided that there is indeed a fin for every environment, the Seawing Nova. This “weird looking” fin is said to be appropriate for all of your diving needs. Honestly baffled by the fact that Scubapro would only want you to buy ONE set of fins, it seems like a great idea. Trying to combine the power of the Jet fin with the efficiency of the Twin Jet Max (split fin) they have really made a unique and completely authentic dive fin. Having a completely independent foot pocket allows the diver to maximize their stroke and the added length of the Seawing Nova helps as well. Having an easier back stroke and elastic down kick gives the fin a true balance of power between a Jet Fin and a split fin. Although the balance is there, there is no substitution for the power and torque of a jet fin. Not to mention cool, these fins come in all sizes both black and white.
I have dove with the Seawing Nova’s and I can confidently say that for shore diving in a cold water environment, they are not for me. They have a very nice push underwater, but any more than a light current renders the fin obsolete. I also require a fin that will push me nice and fast on the surface, which these did quite nicely. I think that these fins would be excellent for warm water, as that was all I was thinking about during my dive… If you are looking for fins with an easy kick, but power when you want it, they would be great; in a relatively calm environment. Speaking with a colleague of mine, you may also want to avoid shark diving with these fins (schools of sharks) as they look like nice fleshy bits to grab a bite of.
I could say that I am biased a little bit towards Scubapro Jet Fins as I have been diving them for well over 5 years now, and would never go back, I do also travel with them. I would take a pair of Seawing Nova’s snorkeling or for long shallow dives to appease my calves. But I do enjoy the thrust of a stronger fin. Here is the real kicker… All that has been said, if this is the fin for you, then make sure you are willing to spend up and above $200.00. They are the child of engineering when it comes to the price, so you won’t want to complain too much to your local dive stores.