Increase Your Rowing Visual Library: Learn With Instagram

Social media is usually something we use to escape our day, check what our friends are up to or just waste some time while we wait in line. It is however a great resource for increasing your rowing visual library. You can watch rowing videos of athletes of all levels working on all different kinds of things at different places around the world. Watching rowing is something that can, when done regularly, greatly increase your understanding of different aspects of the stroke. Seeing what different stroke styles are, how different bodies row and how the system of the boat moves helps to improve understanding your of your own stroke.

You need to be a student of rowing whenever and wherever you can be – even if that is in line at the grocery store. It is important to find resources that have consistent, quality videos, that allow you to see what you need to. Its also good to find accounts that that post videos of varying speed, include detailed explanations and maybe even some additional visuals to help explain what is happening.

In an ideal world it is best to have someone take footage of you rowing. That is the best way to associate a coaches words to understanding and improvement in your stroke. Since that’s not always available keep your eyes and mind strong by putting Instagram to work for you. Skip that video you’ve already watched 20 times of the rooster crowing in slow motion – its not going to help you improve your blade work πŸ˜‰

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Let’s talk about leg speed. ?Sound on for commentary. We’ve worked with 2 competitive collegiate rowers in the past week who had this same problem (and many others on a regular basis). Faster leg drive does not mean more power if your handle is not connected to your core. The further the distance between your core and handle, the harder it is to stay connected using bodyweight only, so the seat and handle need to move as one fixed unit. If your legs drive too fast, you will have no choice but to force handle speed through the second half of the drive by yanking and pulling. However, if you time your leg speed and core connection correctly, the handle will fly into your body with no effort and it will feel like the stroke finishes for you. Your leg drive should feel like a patient squeeze. Keep the pressure on the handle light as you initiate the change of direction and wait to drive your seat back until you have locked your core to the handle. Your legs can only drive as hard as your core can withstand. β€” @sarahendershot

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Its also cool to search around and see what things you can find that relate to the rowing motion. This performance trainer posts a lot of peak speed exercises and I found this one to be amazingly similar to the start sequence of a spring race.