Question of the Day

One of the varsity rowers told me about a certain race move/call-10 for pairs? Like having all 8 take a 10, but emphasis for specific pairs. I’m not sure how to call that, can you help me out? I was thinking maybe ” Alright, we’re all 8 we’re going to take a 10 by pairs.. in two… in ONE.. on THIS one, stern pair let’s see what you got! That’s one… two… 5 and 6 right here 3… 4..” and so on..” I don’t know if that’s how you call it…

Yup, I know exactly what you’re talking about. I use this frequently with my boats, usually in the second thousand of a sprint race or during the final 30ish strokes of a head race. I like to do 5 “hard” strokes per pair + an all eight power 10 so that I’m not making the crew do a straight power 40 or something. I usually say something like: “OK, coming into the last 30 strokes, let’s feel it – stern pair 5 … give it to me, on this one… (5, 4, 3, 2, 1) … 5 + 6, now, (repeat down to bow pair) … and all eight, 10 to bring it home, on this one…”.

Related: When do you call power 10s, both on the erg and the water? Would it be like when you see a girl’s split dropping and staying down on a 2k or during a race if you’re close and want to pass another boat? Or could it be any time just for a burst of energy? I don’t really know the strategy, I just know at some point I’ll have to sound like I know what I’m doing and call a few.

I like to use each pair’s five strokes as “focus” strokes to get them to maximize the stuff they’ve been working on … like, they’re obviously still power strokes but I’ll usually say something like “grab those catches, bow pair”, “5 + 6, let’s see that jump!”, “squeeze the finishes 3 + 4!”, “Stern pair, work that rhythm now...”, etc. At the end when I call the final ten I’ll say something about driving across the line just to remind them how close we are to the finish and to give that last little bit of “oomph” to get us over.

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