(If you need prescription lenses, get your mask from Snorkel-Mart using this link)
What you want:
Cressi Sub Superocchio
They are all almost the same. It’s all of the wanted characteristics and strong. The only problem I have is a little less vision (but more than a regular dive mask due to the eyes being closer to the lens) and the side strap retainers sometime come loose when I pull real hard.
Other common masks used:
Technisub Sphera – Great vision that wraps around your face, but is less protective due to a lens and frams that can flex. When it does flex, it can develop leaks.
Cressi Sub Minima
Masks I want to Try (August 2010)
Aqualung Micromask: in As of 2010 I tried on a new mask by Aqualung and really liked it. A word of caution: It's expensive at about $90. I haven't use the maska game, but I assume it would be good:
Comfortable Silicon Mouthpiece – the last thing you need is a hard plastic or rubber mouthpiece that irritates you. You’ll end up just throwing it away.
Large Bore (Tube Diameter) – you need all the air you can get while on the surface
My opinion is that valves or funny attachments just get in the way and are cumbersome create more drag. If you do like a snorkel with a purge, be prepared to use a different technique of clearing the snorkel than you would with a non-purged snorkel. As you exhale to purge the snorkel, water and air escape from the valves as well as the top and water may not fully empty from the snorkel. I find that valved snorkels take a long steady exhale to clear rather than a short powerful exhalation.
Here are some recommended snorkels:
Get fins that have a full-foot on them. Strap on boot fins will be heavier and stiffer and not as good. They will have buckles to provide more drag along with those neoprene booties. The buckles can also hurt other players in the pool. Same applies for fins with sharp edges. You may use them as long as they are taped and will not injure anyone.
Qualities that should be looked at in fins are:
The bigger and longer and stiffer the fin is, the more leg strength you will need to push them. And heavier people need more push. But remember that the bigger a fin, the harder it is to maneuver in tight spots as well. I like to choose a fin for different occasions or position. I like the big fins for being a forward and having a higher top speed. For a mid or back position, I like the Technisub Ala’s, allowing me to turn faster or have a quicker acceleration, but a lower top speed.
The largest fin commonly used is the Mares Quattro and following that is the Mares L’s and other no-longer produced fins such as the Cressi Sub Rondine Pro and Technisub Ala. Mares HP’s are the smallest fin I’d recommend, but have adequate propulsion to them. Other fins such as the US Divers Blades FP (also called Technisub Stratos FP) fall in between the HP’s and the larger fins. The Technisub Prostar might be a good fin, but I have not tested them out. The Mares Avanti Tre is very similar if not identical to the HP’s. The Technisub Idea is a bit wimpy, but holds up well and is recommended for beginners. Stay away from the Cressi Frog line of fins as they break within a dozen times of playing in them.
Technisub Ala – A great all around fin with great propulsion and turning ability. As of 2005 they are not available. Technisub has said that they have no plans for making more.
Mares Avanti Quattros or Mares Avanti L’s – A great fin for people with strong legs. I’d say this is the fin most used at a world competition level. Readily available for around $100. The downside is that they are hard (tiring) to kick and the turning ability is reduced. UPDATE: Mares has replaced this fin with the Avanti Excel. Not anything like the L or the Quattros, the Excels are lightwiehgt and have very little power and run for about $80.
Mares Avanti HP’s – Hockey’s favorite starter fin. A light fin that has decent propulsion and stays intact through years of play. These are definitely not for the fast runaways as they don’t have top end speed. Very easy to turn in.
Mares Avanti Tre – See Hp’s above, but a littl emore power some say..
US Diver’s Blades FP or Technisub Stratos – A great all around fin that have diminished abilities of all the other fins; not quite as good as the Ala’s for acceleration or turning, harder to kick than the HP’s (but faster), easier to kick than the Quattros, but not as fast. A recommended choice.
Cressi Sub Pro Star – Although I’d like to recommend these, I’ve never kicked them and also can’t attest to their longevity. They seem like they may be alright, but use at your own risk.
Technisub Idea – These are similar to the HP’s for speed, but are somewhat larger making the turning a bit clumsier.
2010 Update Fins
As of a year or so ago, there have been a few companies developing fins for the underwater hockey market. Here are the updates without reviews:
Available at: CanAm hockey gear: http://www.canamuwhgear.com/products-page/fins-fin-keepers/gull-mew-hard-fin/
Available at: http://www.buwh.be/shop/
Waterways Nemo Fins:
There are a lot of suits out there. Pick the one you like best. I like the Speedo Endurance suits. they hold up very well and fit well. but they are expensive (but not compared to three or four regular lycra suits that you'll go through in the same period, especially on the MLK pool bottom). Other peope liek the EQ brand suits available at CanAm Hockey, but I tend to stay away from them as the leg holes are not big enough and the suit is quite 'stiff'. But they last a long time as well. These are the suits that the SF sea lions have for team suits and the US team usually buys as well (or has for he last 4 years or so).
You need head gear to identify you as being on a team (white or black) and to protect your ear drums from being ruptured, should anyone accidentally kick you in the ear.
I like the Keifer brand head gear:
CanAm and EqualPuck also sells hats, but I've not seen them up close.
What gear do I need? >