Wednesday, May 22, 2013


Shortly after writing my post on open water tips, I was contacted by an online retailer called AquaGear asking if I’d be interested in reviewing one of their products. This sounded great to me, and I debated back and forth what I should choose. If you’ve followed the blog for a while, you may recall the Eureka! post from a couple months back. I came across a funky-looking product on the AquaGear site called the Finis Forearm Fulcrum that I thought could help reinforce the changes I’ve been trying to make to my stroke.

as a kid I thought a "Forearm Fulcrum" was my grandpa's headlock

After reading the following from the AquaGear site, I was sold: “The Finis Forearm Fulcrum helps position your forearm to achieve an Early Vertical Forearm (EVF) to increase stroke efficiency. This position utilizes the entire forearm during the pull, from the fingertips to the elbow. When using the Forearm Fulcrum for stroke refinement, it promotes muscle memory for the proper hand, wrist and forearm position. Gain efficiency and maintain a strong, uninterrupted pull from the very beginning to the end of the stroke. The Forearm Fulcrum is beneficial for all four competitive strokes.” 

The Fulcrum came in no time, and I was excited to try it out. Like anything, at first it felt a little strange, but I quickly got the hang of how it was supposed to feel. It essentially acts like a splint, locking down your fingertips to elbow so they move as a single unit. I used it during my warm-up that first time, but nothing “magical” occurred. I’m not quite sure what I was expecting. It was fun to try something new, but I wondered if I was using it correctly to get the full benefit. “I guess it’ll take some time,” I thought, and I took them off to continue my workout. This was the magical moment when the rabbit was pulled from the hat... immediately I noticed an enhanced “feel for the water” as they say, and I felt as though I was using my forearms a lot more in the pulling motion. Similar to a pull buoy, paddles, etc, I’ve continued to mix the Fulcrum into my workouts. I’ve really enjoyed it and definitely feel like it's helping to build muscle memory for a more effective pull.

I’d also like to write a bit about AquaGear as a company. I was interested to learn that AquaGear was the first online swim shop, as in ever, founded in 1992. Back then, Amazon was still just a rainforest in South America, Yahoo was something a cowboy might say, and if you said Google in a sentence people would think you were a weirdo. Over the past 20+ years they’ve figured out how to give water enthusiasts a top-notch experience (low price guarantee, same-day shipping, great customer service, etc). They’re also a family-run company with an A+ rating by the Better Business Bureau. My experience with them was fantastic. Check them out!



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