Whether you are a beginner or an experienced swimmer getting the best kickboard for swimming is important.
Swimming kickboards (a kind of pool floats) were introduced into the swimming world by Adolf Kelfer in the 1930s. He was an Olympic gold medalist swimmer who was contracted by the American government for the water training of the US the army.
He designed the kickboards to improve the kick strength as well as condition the legs of a swimmer for more endurance. In the following years after their inception, the kickboards became so popular that Kelfer started a company producing them. Currently, this piece of swimming gear is used by essentially swimmers at all levels of skills from beginners to advanced swimmers.
With the different types of kickboards available in the market, it can be a bit challenging to decide the best kickboard for you. This is why I have compiled a list of the best kickboards for swimming to make it easy for you to make the best choice.
What Are the Benefits of Using Kickboards?
Kickboards can help significantly improve the swimming skills of swimmers. It does not matter the level of your swimming skills there is always room for improvement. Here are some of the benefits you stand to gain from a swimming board.
Kickboards Help Instill Confidence in New Swimmers
Kickboards give swimmers balance and buoyancy while in the water which increases their confidence while training. Using a kickboard aids in keeping your upper body buoyant which makes it possible to isolate and train in specific moves as well as allowing you to focus on training your lower body.
For most beginners, learning how to kick can be hard when you are constantly worried about staying afloat. With a kickboard, however, you don’t have to worry about staying afloat and as a result, you can concentrate on learning how to execute proper kicks.
Another thing is that, when using a kickboard, your head stays above the water. This makes it easy for the instructor to communicate with you and issue instructions on how to improve certain aspects of the training.
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Focused Legs’ Workout
Kickboards take the upper body and the arms out of a swimming workout equation. This gives you a chance to focus on working out and training your legs and hips during a swimming exercise without the temptation to overuse your arms. This significantly improves your legs’ strength.
This makes kickboards the perfect swimming gear to go to when you are looking for leg conditioning.
See Also: 17 Best Swim Fins
A Resting Tool for the Arms
A large number of people develop the habit of only depend on their arms when they swim while neglecting the legs. Using a kickboard gives the arms a rest so that a swimmer can engage the legs in isolation.
After an intense arm workout, you can also use the kickboards to keep swimming while giving your arms a breather.
Constant Oxygen Supply
Of all the exercises and sports I can think of, there is only a handful of those that limit the amount of oxygen getting to your body.
With a kickboard, your head stays above the water allowing you to keep breathing continually. This ensures that your muscles have a constant supply of oxygen and you can keep swimming for longer.
What Is the Best Kickboards for Swimming to Buy?
Here is a list of the best kickboards for swimming on the market for 2020. Let’s check it out!
- Best Overall: Nordesco Rigid Swimming Kickboard
- Runner Up: FINIS Alignment Swimming Kickboard
- Best Budget: Speedo Team Swimming Kickboar
- Perfect for Beginner Adult Swimmers: VIAHART Swimming Kickboard
- Best for Experienced Swimmers: Speedo Double Barrel Swimming Kickboard
- Best Kickboard for Toddlers: TYR Junior Swimming Kickboard
- Best for both Kids and Adults: Lightweight Foam Swimming Kickboard
- Best for Large Bodied Swimmers: Poolmaster 50513 Advanced Swimming Kickboard
Finding a Good Kickboard Store Near Me
When buying a kickboard it is important to ensure you get one from a good shop where you can get assistance any time.
You have two options when it comes to getting a good one. You can shop online or you can find a physical shop near you. Some shops have an online store as well as a physical one and that’s okay too.
To ensure you shop in the right shop, ensure they have good customer reviews, they offer a warranty, and they have simple return guidelines that will not make it hard to return their products should you need to.
Take note of their opening and closing hours too so that you don’t miss them. You can search on the internet the ones located near you but this map can also help you.
Comparison Table of 15 Best Kickboards for Swimming 2020
To get a glance at the best boards, I have put together a table of the best ones available in the market so you can easily make a choice.
Best Kickboards for Swimming Reviews 2020
Now that I have enlightened you on the benefits of using a kickboard and the way to tell the best place to get one, let us now look at my best picks and how they stack up against one another. Let’s get ahead!
Nordesco Rigid Swimming Kickboard
(Best Overall – Editor’s Choice)
If you are looking for a rigid board that gives your upper body maximum support as you practice your kicks without any discomfort, then this is an ideal choice for you.
The Nordesco kickboard is made of EVA material but still a bit different from the other EVA foam material boards in the market in a good way.
While most EVA foam kickboards bend when subjected to the pressure of the water-resistance when you are swimming, these boar stays inflexible making it the best kickboard for swimming if rigidity is the most important quality you are looking for in a kickboard.
With the ridges on the sides, you can get a firm grip while grinding in the water. The 19.25” by 11” dimensions make this board a convenient size for most adult swimmers.
The EVA foam material makes this board particularly resilient to the harsh elements like the UV rays from the sun and chlorine in the swimming pools. This makes this board very durable. It will be a while before you need to go shopping for one again.
Different from the other kickboards in the market, this one comes in various appealing colors that you can choose from. Being able to choose your favorite color means you can stand out when you go to the pool for practice.
The price of this board is also very pocket-friendly in comparison. With just under $20, you can bring with you this price of awesomeness to the pool.
- Very rigid allowing the board to comfortably support you.
- It comes in different appealing colors allowing you to your favorite color.
- The different colors allow you to stand out.
- The ridges at the sides give you a firm grip on the bard.
- Suitable size for most adults.
- Not hydrodynamic.
FINIS Alignment Swimming Kickboard
Just like most of the kickboards in the market, the finis kickboard is made of lightweight EVA foam material which makes it buoyant and durable as well. Different from speedo, however, its design is completely different allowing you to assume a natural position in the water when swimming cheers to the ergonomic design.
Another aspect that makes this possible is that the finis kickboard is smaller than most conventional kickboards as well as arrow or triangular-shaped. It comes in a single yellow color.
The streamlined alignment is made possible by a strap that allows you to control the board even when you are not gripping it with your palms or fingers. Submerging the kickboard underwater also ensures that your body is in the best swimming position. This relieves pressure off your lower back and shoulders.
The submerged head position, however, means you would need a snorkel for optimal performance with this board. To ensure that your grip is firm, there is a hand strap for you to hold on to. This stabilizing strap also makes it possible for you to hold using one hand making it possible for you to easily in the water when swimming.
This makes the kickboard very versatile allowing you to train for a variety of kicks and strokes comfortably.
The combination of perfect design, size, and durable material makes this kickboard one of the best kickboards for swimming available in the market.
- Ergonomic design.
- It allows a streamlined body positioning.
- A better grip enabled by the stabilizing strap.
- Relieves pressure off the shoulders.
- Made using EVA foam material which makes it durable.
- You need a snorkel for optimal performance.
Speedo Team Swimming Kickboard
Made using light-textured Eva foam, the speedo team kickboard is one of the best kickboards for swimming in the market today. If you are looking to get a firm grip, durability, and just the right amount of resistance for your kick training in a kickboard then this is the best kickboard for swimming for you.
Its ridges curved on the sides and the finger grooves strategically located on the underside ensure that your grip when training is firm and secure.
The EVA foam material this board is made from makes it not only buoyant but also very durable and damage-resistant. This makes it ideal for exercises that will help you increase your leg stamina and endurance. This is what makes it a favorite for most swimming instructors. You cannot go wrong with this kickboard.
It has a tombstone shape and comes in one standard size that is suitable for most swimmers and is available in either black or blue colors.
The price of this particular kickboard is very pocket-friendly.
- It is durable.
- Made of EVA foam material which makes it buoyant offering the right amount of resistance.
- Relatively big in comparison to other kickboards.
- Features finger grooves on the underside and scallops on the side which gives you a firm grip.
- Very comfortable for most people.
- Available in only one design which is a bit small for most adults.
TYR Junior Swimming Kickboard
(Best Kickboard for Toddlers)
Measuring 14.5” by 10” the TRY junior kickboard is just one of the best swimming kickboards for toddlers. However, if your young swimmer is older than 10, you might consider getting them a larger size as this one might be too small for their comfort.
This board is also made from EVA closed foam material which makes it impossible to absorb water. This material also makes it extra durable meaning that it will serve your kid for a long time without getting damaged.
The buoyant material makes it perfect for your young swimmer to train the lower body and various kicks and strokes.
The board comes in blue color. It is suitable for both recreational swimmers and those training for a competitive sport as well.
The ‘new smell’ that comes from the bard after unpacking is completely harmless and it will dissipate after a few swims. For just under $20 you can get this kickboard for your kid. How awesome is that?
- One of the best swimming kickboards for toddlers.
- Extra durable.
- Made of closed EVA foam material which does not absorb water.
- Ideal for developing kick skills and improving leg endurance.
- Mede of high-quality material.
- Not suitable for swimmers above 10 which means you will need to replace it as your kid grows.
TYR Swimming Kickboard
For any serious swimmers out there this is a solid choice. It is made of closed EVA foam material which makes it very durable and resistant to the damaging elements like the UV rays and chlorine in the pools.
At 20” by 11.5” this board is bigger than the speedo kickboard which makes it more suitable for a lot of taller adults. The TRY kickboard ensures that you isolate your lower body for training allowing you to condition your legs for great endurance.
This board is ideal for both advanced swimmers and beginners and it does not matter whether you are training for a competitive sport or just swimming for leisure. This board has your back at all times.
It’s available in black.
- Bigger in comparison to other boards making it suitable for taller people.
- Made of closed EVA foam material which makes it very durable.
- Suitable for both recreation swimmers and competitive swimmers.
- It does not have grips.
TYR Hydrofoil Swimming Kickboard
(Best for a Natural Swimming Position during Kick Drills)
If you have been using the conventional kickboards and you are looking to upgrade into one that positions your body into a more natural position then look no further.
The concave base of this kickboard allows your arms to rest in a comfortable position as you focus on your kicks almost as if you were swimming naturally without a kickboard.
The grooves in the front allow you to have a firm grip so you can focus on your legs’ conditioning without worrying about slipping.
The high-quality EVA foam material used to make it also makes it very lightweight and durable. It comes in one universal size that is comfortable for most swimmers.
- The concave base that relieves pressure on your arms and shoulders.
- Grooves at the front for a firm grip
- A more natural position during kick drills.
- Small for tall adult swimmers.
Arena Swimming Kickboard
(Contoured Kickboard for More Comfort)
It is safe to say that the arena swimming kickboard is an improved version of a traditional kickboard to give you extra comfort and safety as you practice your kicks.
Made of ethylene-vinyl acetate material, this board is super cool. It also comes in different colors which allows you to choose your favorite color so your board can be unique and stand out from others when you go to the pool.
This swimming piece of swimming gear also features two grip holes so you can have a firm hold on it when you are swimming.
It also has a contoured design that guarantees your comfort and support during your practice as well as turning into different positions.
For just under $30 you can rock this bad boy in your next swim. How about that!
- Available in different colors that allow your board to stand out at the pool.
- Hand grooves cut into the board for a firm grip.
- Contoured design for more comfort and support.
- The size is not very suitable for tall adults.
VIAHART Swimming Kickboard
(Perfect for Beginner Adult Swimmers)
The VIAHART kickboard has just the perfect buoyancy and size that you require as an adult swimmer who is not very experienced in swimming.
The board is available in different colors so you can pick the best color that you prefer.
Just like the arena kickboards above, this one also has cut out groves to hold on to for a firm grip so you can concentrate on building up your leg endurance without fear of sinking.
The EVA material used to make this board is free of carcinogenic materials. It is also free of phthalate and formaldehyde.
The manufacturers are confident in their product and they ensure you will enjoy it by providing you with a 3-month warranty and a 30 days return no questions asked. What more would you ask for?
The price for this kickboard is unbelievably friendly.
- Cut out grooves for a firm grip on the kickboard as you train.
- Phthalate and formaldehyde-free EVA foam material.
- Comes in different colors for uniqueness.
- A 3month warranty and 1-month return policy.
- Perfect for both kids and adults.
- Not the best choice if you are looking for a bigger challenge.
FINIS Foam Swimming Kickboard
(Best with Sizes for Both Adults and Children)
If rigidity is not a must quality in a kickboard, or if you are just looking for a softer choice, then this will be an interesting an ideal choice for you.
The finis board is available in both adult and junior swimmers. The finis junior board is one of the best swimming kickboards for toddlers in the market. The soft foam material it is made of is also very skin-friendly.
With just the right amount of buoyancy, you can completely take your upper body out of the equation and focus on improving your leg endurance.
This piece of swimming gear comes in the yellow color. One of the best buys for the value of your money.
- Made of soft foam material for a softer feel.
- Available in both kids’ and adults’ sizes.
- It allows you to focus solely on your legs.
- No color variety.
Melissa & Doug Spark Shark Swimming Kickboard
(Best Swimming Kickboards for Toddlers)
Specifically tailored for kids the Melisa and Dough boards are designed to get your young swimmer excited about their next trip to the pool. They also come in different appealing colors.
They are made of Styrofoam material covered with quality polyester covers that are very resistant to the elements like the chlorine and sunlight to keep the color of the board intact.
They are recommended for kids up to 15years but some adults prefer using this kickboard because it gets a little submerged when in the water.
With perfect buoyancy and perfect support for the arms, this board improves the confidence of your kid’s swimming and ensure that your child’s training is impactful. The price is also very friendly.
- Appealing designs and colors for kids.
- Resistant to the weather elements and pool chlorine.
- Perfect kickboards for kids.
- The case can get moldy if not well taken care of.
Speedo Double Barrel Swimming Kickboard
(Best for Experienced Swimmers)
The ergonomic design of this board ensures that you assume a natural swimming position when in the water which helps relieve the pressure off your arms and shoulders.
The grip holes are also molded to allow your hands a firm, secure and comfortable grip on the board as you train on kick motions.
If you are an experienced swimmer who is looking to challenge your swimming skills further, then you will not be disappointed with this board. To make the workout even more challenging and impactful, you can use this board with fins.
- Perfect hands grip.
- Maximizes your workout impact.
- Made of lightweight EVA foam material which makes very durable.
- A bit challenging for beginners.
Poolmaster 50513 Advanced Swimming Kickboard
(Best for Large Bodied Swimmers)
This board comes with two pairs of gripping holes which give you a chance to choose the best pair that feels most comfortable and natural to you.
When using this board, your body is properly aligned which helps reduce the pressure placed on your shoulders by conventional kickboards.
Made of polyethylene material, this board is made to stand the test of time and ensure that the next trip to the store for a board will not be soon.
It is recommended for kids over 8 years to adults which make it universal.
For just under $20, you can own this piece of awesomeness.
- Made of polyethylene material which makes super durable.
- It can support larger people who may have a problem finding a comfortable kickboard.
- Two pairs of grips for maximum comfort when swimming.
- Maybe a little harder than conventional kickboard which may make it easily breakable.
Lightweight Foam Swimming Kickboard
(Best for both Kids and Adults)
Swimming practice either as a beginner or an expert has been made fun by the less than average weight kickboards that guarantee your comfort in the water.
The lightweight kickboard made from the EVA foam material gives makes it super durable. For convenience one can carry it as a takeaway package in their backpacks or leave it in the pool.
This swimming gear is suitable for all types of swimmers either as a small kid at the age of 3 years who is beginning their swimming journey or an expert learning more swimming skills. Adults exercising or those who are swimming for fun or in-search for more water relaxation techniques can also find this board useful.
The high-quality lightweight foam swimming kickboards are sold at a price that is pocket-friendly.
- Made from high-quality material, with grips making swimming practice enjoyable safe.
- Convenient for all swimmers and ensures your comfort expectations are meant.
- Affordable for all clients without any form of prejudice.
- This kickboard swimming gear is an all-weather and chlorine resistant gear.
- It might cause an allergic reaction.
Speedo Elite Red Swimming Kickboard
(Ergonomically Designed for Perfect Body Alignment)
This swimming accessory has been made with unique designs that maximize and ensures that the comfort of an individual is met thus minimizing the fatigue experienced during swimming practice.
The shape and design of this kickboard not only ensures that the strength of your legs is improved but also offers support to your shoulders and arms.
Speedo elite red swimming kickboards are suitable for all types of swimmers and allows you to hit your set swimming goals with great satisfaction.
This particular kickboard is fashioned in a great way to ensure that it acquires excellent buoyancy in the water.
- Made with the modern technology ergonomic design to ensure buoyancy.
- Appropriate and suitable for all swimmers and caters to all their different needs.
- Great quality with a high-value proposition.
- The kickboard is also available small in size.
Kiefer Training Swimming Kickboard
(EVA Foam Material Kickboard Resilient to Weather Elements)
The Kiefer kickboard is one of the best tombstone kickboard design in the market. It is made of EVA foam material which makes durable and resilient to weather elements and pool chlorine.
This thickness of this board makes it is buoyant enough to give your upper body the support you need and isolate your legs for proper conditioning.
It comes in different colors too so you can pick your favorite one.
- Available in different colors.
- Eva foam material which makes it very durable.
- Easy to hold sides for a good grip.
- The grip is not that firm.
What to Consider When Getting a Kickboard – Buying Guide
With the many choices available in the market, it can be confusing when it comes to settling on the best one. To choose the best kickboard for swimming, you need to know what to look for to pick the most suitable board for you or your kid.
There are a few considerations that you should keep in mind. To make this process very simple for you, here let me take you through the most important things to keep in mind.
The material of the board should be one of the top considerations when it comes to buying one. This will determine your training success when it comes to swimming practice and also how durable the board will be.
The best kickboards for swimming in the market today are made of EVA foam. This material is suitable for making this kind of swimming gear for a host of properties that make it ideal.
The first one is buoyancy. The fact that the board needs to float on the water makes it necessary to use a material that easily floats in the water. EVA foam is such a material.
The closed-cell EVA foam makes the material ensures that your kickboard does not absorb water when you are swimming. This ensures that the kickboard lasts long.
With this material, you can achieve the much-needed comfort when you are resting on it while still providing you with support for your upper body when you are practicing your kicks.
Lastly, this material is very resilient to the elements it’s subjected to like chlorine and the UV rays from the sun.
The Design of the Kickboard
The design of a board is a major factor that you need to have at the top of your considerations. It will dictate the comfort and ease of using the kickboard.
A perfect design is the one that offers you a firm grip on the bard so that you can focus on practicing your kicks without worrying about slipping or sinking.
There are different designs available in the market today but the most common ones are two. The tombstone or the U-shaped design which is the most common is the oldest and most convenient and familiar for most people. A tombstone design is the best kickboard for beginners. This is because this design of kickboards offers simplicity and is also hydrodynamic. This makes tombstone boards perfect swimming kickboards for beginners.
The difference between these two designs is that the arrow-shaped design allows for a natural streamlined position when you are in the water. This makes it possible to practice some kick motions which may not be possible with the tombstone designs.
If you are looking for a more challenging workout to condition your legs further for more endurance, the arrow-shaped design kickboards are the best option for you as they are a bit smaller.
The Size of the Kickboard
The size of the kickboard you choose should be dependent on your height and weight to some extent. If you are tall, you are best served by a bigger board.
The skill level of a swimmer is also an important determinant when it comes to deciding the size of the kickboard you decide to get. Smaller boards are mostly suitable for advanced swimmers. If you are an experienced swimmer looking for a bigger challenge, small boards are an ideal choice.
If you are a beginner, a bigger board will be good for you. Because of their high level of buoyancy, it will be easy for you to float and also, they offer the comfort and support you need to build up your confidence.
Kickboards for Kids
Children’s swim kickboards are different from those used by adults. When you are getting a kickboard for your young swimmer, it’s important to keep in mind their height as this will guide you on the size of the kickboard to get.
A steady grip is also important as it comes in handy when the child is learning how to swim.
When it comes to choosing a kickboard, the price matters but don’t make the mistake of compromising on the quality of the board for a lower price.
The key here is making sure you get a good quality kickboard for a reasonable price.
You could buy a cheap board but end up never using it. When it comes to getting a kickboard, you should focus on your needs as a swimmer. This will make the selection process a lot more easy and worthwhile.
To some people, the color of the kickboard they are using does not matter but you are one of those who it matters you have nothing to be ashamed of. Some kickboard brands in the market offer different colors while others don’t give you much choice.
If you need a specific color to stand out when you step out, then check out brands that offer you a variety of colors to choose from like the Nordesco kickboards.
The Downside of Using Kickboards for Swimming
Getting the best kickboard for swimming would need you to get full disclosure of all the facts. While there are numerous benefits for you to gain while using a kickboard as a swimming gear, there are some downsides to it. Let me take you through them.
A kickboard can worsen your swimmer’s shoulder situation. A swimmer’s shoulder is an overuse injury that occurs to your shoulder as a result of repeated injuries rather than one isolated injury. This is because when using a kickboard, your shoulders are unnaturally lifted higher.
When you are having a strain on your shoulder, it’s advisable to stay away from your kickboard for a while and instead employ some training strategies that do not involve a kickboard until you fully recover.
Using a kickboard for a long time can also strain your neck. Imagine looking straight up for 10 to 20 minutes continuously, sounds strenuous, doesn’t it? That is the position that your head and neck assume when you are using a kickboard.
Some kick movements like the dolphin kick are also hard to train using a kickboard. This is because this particular kick motion requires someone to involve their upper body especially the one that is hand initiated.
When all is said, however, the benefits of using a kickboard outweigh the downsides of using one. There is so much you can gain from using a proper kickboard. Now let me give you tips on the best place to get one.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
At this juncture, I’m hoping that I have answered most of the questions you might have on kickboards but in case you still have some questions on your mind, then this section may help a lot in clarifying any issues you might have left.
Swim Network Overview
A kickboard is an important part of the swimming gear and your swimming training routine as well. It does not matter the level of your swimming skills. With a good kickboard, you can significantly increase the level of your confidence in the pool.
If you are just a recreational swimmer or you use swimming as an exercise, a good kickboard will serve you well too.
The best kickboard for swimming is the one that gives your legs maximum conditioning. However, with the many brands available in the market, making a choice can be a bit tough. Knowing what to consider during your search, however, can considerably ease the process.
My personal choices are as follows, if you are on a tight budget, the Speedo Team kickboard is the best option as it is pocket-friendly but can still do a great job. If you advanced swimmer who is looking for swimming gear to challenge you physically, then the Finis alignment kickboard is for you.
If you are a beginner, TRY kickboard is what I would recommend for you as it is big enough to support you comfortably while giving you maximum buoyancy. Finally, if you are looking for a kickboard for your toddler, TRY kickboard for juniors should be a great choice.
This guide provides you with everything there is to know when it comes to picking a kickboard so you can settle on the perfect pick for you. All the best.