So I just read all your posts and what makes someone a good coxswain…you talk a lot about personalities. In general I think I have a personality of a coxswain. I’m pretty loud and sarcastic and I generally like to talk. However, I have often been told that I am not aggressive enough as a coxswain and that I need to be more stern. I have tried but I can’t seem to get that guttural sounding voice. Any advice?
I do talk a lot about personalities. I think one’s personality is a large determining factor in their ability to be a coxswain (not even a good coxswain, just a coxswain in general).
You don’t have to get that deep, growling voice to be aggressive. Does it help, sure, but is it necessary…no. I don’t really know how to phrase this so that it makes sense but the aggressive part of coxing is almost more of a state of mind than it is about your voice. I know I talk about it coming from your voice a lot but you have to be in the right state of mind first. The voice is almost a secondary thing, if you follow what I mean.
What helps me keep my voice low and intense is talking from my core. Instead of just yelling from my throat, I get low in the seat and use my entire core to project my voice. I find that not only does this save my voice but it also helps what I’m saying come across a lot clearer. If you’re talking mainly from your throat it’ll have a tendency to crack a lot, which doesn’t happen as often when you use your core. I talked about that a little in one of my earlier videos. The aggressiveness comes across in my tone and my words. For the most part I don’t think I really have that growl-y voice but I still think I maintain a pretty solid level of aggressiveness.
Listen to all the recordings I’ve posted (1, 2, 3, 4). Most of the coxswains are aggressive in their calls but not necessarily in the same way. This coxswain coxes similarly to me in that we’re both fairly conversational with our coxing but the intensity is still there vs. someone like this coxswain or Pete who naturally have that growl in their voice. If that deep, guttural voice doesn’t work for you, that’s OK! Find what works for you and go with it.