A year ago this week was when the USA women won gold in Rio. If there’s anything to be taken away from watching this race it’s that patience and trust in the plan pays off.
Neat look at how the timing system works at Canadian Henley (and pretty much all other major regattas).
Guys, I am cautiously optimistic that I’ll have the new site up by September 1st, which is really exciting. I’m trying to take my own advice and not let perfect get in the way of good so as far as the big stuff goes, I’m on track to have all that stuff completed by the end of this month. If you haven’t been following my Instagram stories, keep an eye on them over the next few weeks because I’ve been sharing sneak peeks of what the site’s gonna look like and so far, the feedback has been pretty solid.
The final big project is tackling all the coxswain recordings. There’s a lot that have been removed from YouTube or Soundcloud and some of the early posts from 3-4 years ago just have way too many recordings in them so I want to re-do those and make each post a little shorter and more straightforward.
If there’s anything you wanna see on the new site – literally anything – I’m all ears! I really want to make this site work for you guys and be less blog-y and more actual website-y so any suggestions you’ve got, I’d love to hear them.
Here I am sitting in the boat … I’m not really doing anything to help the boat go fast but everybody is supposed to listen to me and they are supposed to go harder when I say go harder. It has to be a blind trust. If one person questions me or doesn’t believe what I’m saying, it just doesn’t work. Or if eight people don’t buy in 100 percent, it will still be fast but it won’t be magnificent.
A couple years ago I posted a video on nutrition for rowers that included a ton of great info on getting the proper nutrition to fuel your training. You can check that post out here. Above is another video from a rower who talks about his diet, general nutrition strategy, and some of the different approaches that are out there (some good, some not). If you’re heading to college in a few weeks and are trying to figure out how you’re gonna get the calories you need (especially if you’re faced with the prospect of not having your mom cook all your meals anymore…), this is a good video to watch.
Before we get into today’s recordings, if you’re looking to squeeze in one last camp before the summer’s over, check out this camp being hosted by the Kent School in Connecticut. (One of the better recordings I’ve listened to in awhile was from a Kent coxswain – it’s the second one in this post.) The dates are August 6th – 12th, you get to stay in the dorms on campus, row out of their boathouse, etc. The camp is new this year so if you go, let me know what it’s like so I can be sure to include it in future camp posts.
Mount Baker V8+ Steady State
This is a quick clip of some steady state with Mt. Baker’s varsity eight from 2014 and is just another good example of how to cox your crew through low rate pieces like this. The tone of voice, calls, etc. are all solid and there’s a good mix of positive reinforcement, technical pointers, and calls for individual adjustments.
Penn AC Junior Men Practice Recording
Bart sent me this recording last year and I ended up sharing it with several other coxswains (including a couple at MIT) so they could see what I meant when I talked about being more engaging, active, assertive, etc. when calling the warmup and drills. Because we tend to do the same warmup and drills most days of the week it’s easy to kind of zone out and just go through the motions, which can translate to you sounding super monotonous and bored.
Here’s part of the reply I sent to Bart after I listened to this: “My one suggestion would be to slow down what you’re saying. I like the conversational tone you have (that’s how I cox too) but there are times when you’re saying so much and you’re saying it so quickly that it can hard to process it all, especially when you’re doing stuff that’s so technically focused like you were here. Everything you’re saying is good and exactly what you should be communicating to the crew, just try to slow down the pace of your speech so that the rowers can take the feedback you’re giving them and incorporate it without first having to redirect their focus to try and figure out what you said. Tone, annunciation, etc. were all excellent throughout though.”
Rather than write out every technical call he makes as a “call I like”, just take note of pretty much everything he’s saying. Between bladework, body positioning, timing, acceleration, picking the boat up, etc. there’s like, 50 easily discernible calls in here that you can take in the boat with you. Note how he says things too – tone and enunciation is key.
Whatever situation you might find yourself in, whatever good or bad training you have from now until when racing starts, however the races go in those early rounds, it doesn’t make any difference. What makes a difference is how you race that last race.