Video of the Week: Biomechanical analysis of the rowing stroke

This is a great video for novice rowers and anyone that’s looking to improve their technique (both on the erg and the water). It goes over each of the four parts of the stroke and describes what they should look like from a mechanical perspective and then transitions into a critique of her own rowing on the erg. From there it goes over some drills to highlight some of the technical changes she wants to make.

Something she does that I’d probably recommend you not do is be so bouncy with the hands through the final part of the finish and the beginning of the recovery (when the hands are coming in and moving away from the body). A lot of the time people confuse matching the speed of the hands to the boat’s speed with just throwing their hands away from their bodies as fast as they can which results in that super bouncy, ripcord-like motion she’s got going on. I’ve always been taught (and seen other coaches teach) that this isn’t the correct way to approach the finish/start of the recovery but every coach does things a little differently so make sure you understand the style that your coach is trying to develop before making any drastic changes your own rowing.

Outside of that I think this is a great video. Coxswains, this would be a good video for you to watch too, especially those of you who are new to coxing, so you can start to understand the stroke a little bit better. Since you physically can’t see what they look like when you’re on the water it’s important to have a good understanding and visual image of what the bodies should ideally look like during the catch, finish, drive, and recovery so you can make the appropriate calls if something with their bladework indicates that something is off with their body mechanics.

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