Tyr Mentor Hand Paddles : Build Strength, Refine Your Stroke
When I strapped on my new hand paddles for the first time, I couldn’t help laughing: they looked more like lobster claws than serious training tools. When I got in the water, though, I was won over. I might have looked like a crustacean, but I I swam like a dolphin.
Mentor hand paddles are designed for competitive swimmers who want to improve their strokes while increasing strength. The technical design of the rigid PVC foam paddles gave me remarkable “feel.” I was impressed with how cleanly they cut through the water on a good entry. (On a bad entry the paddles drag, helping me identify problems with my stroke.) They also gave me a little extra “oomph” and encouraged me to lengthen my stroke.
I use my two sets of Mentors primarily for aquatic exercises. These paddles have really added to my strength training. They increase resistance and help build strength without putting stress on my shoulder joints. This is especially important for me, as an old rotator cuff injury prevents me from lifting weights. TYR makes the Mentor in sizes XS-L, so I can adjust the intensity of my pool workout by using either my small or medium paddles. (The paddles are secured by adjustable rubber tubing so I can use multiple sizes, regardless of my hand size.) I have tiny hands; the small paddles fit me perfectly, but the mediums are harder to secure. If you have very small hands, stick to the S and XS, but if your hands are average or larger you can probably use any size from S to L.
Bottom Line: A “handy” tool for getting the most out of your aquatic fitness program or to help you improve your swimming technique. Highly recommended for anyone trying to build strength after recovering from a shoulder injury. N.W. (August '05)
Manufacturer's Site: www.tyr.com