Simple, I will focus on the 2 key things that make you go faster at any given rate that are related to your power curve or power application.
Now you can say, wow, Carlos is getting to technical here and I want it really simple. I’m just starting to row and I have no idea of what a power curve is or how I can affect or make my power application better. Well you really do’t need to get too technical.
We all should know that the only thing that makes the boat get closer to the finish line when is not moving is the blade pushing against some water and levering trough yourself against the footplate. Ok let’s check what I said again here. The blade gets on the water at the catch and then trough your grip and hand you get the grip to you and levering trough the pin you are pushing some solid water against the blade. Here we have the first LEVER that is the PIN. The second LEVER or FULCRUM is the body. This lever will be the lower back and will lever your feet pushing the footplate, boat against the hands holding the oar. Ok let’s revue that.
We have two levers here the one you will generate using your body as a lever, feet against hands getting the lower back to fulcrum and the one that the pin will do blade pushing water against handle. Ok now that we know how the blade pushes the boat and ONLY the blade let’s go find out How Carlos Dinares can Make you row faster in 30 minutes???
I will focus on the 2 key things that make your blade work every stroke to generate more speed to the boat that are:
1) a longer length of stroke, meaning to have the blade on the water doing a longer sector or a longer stroke.
2) a more connected blade to the water, meaning that the blade will hold better water. That will be achieved by the combination of better use of my levers and a better feel for the water.
Ok How do i do that in 30 minutes? Well I use a tool that is called Rowperfect3 and its software. What I do is to get the rower to seat on the rowing machine and take few strokes for 5 minutes. After that I help to position the rower body better by explaining posture and helping him hands on to change his body position and posture. I show him how to get more length at the same rate and use better his levers and muscles. I always work at a given rate, normally 16-18 strokes a minute with a heavy drag factor to get an easier feel for the wheel. A heavier drag slow the wheel down and gives more time to the rower to make changes and see the impact on the numbers. I display on the screen of the computer software the power curve, Length of the stroke and Joules x stroke. The rower with all this data starts making changes and with the direct feedback starts realizing what is helping him to get more work x stroke, Joules x stroke. That will be a longer stroke and a more powerful stroke. Obviously the more powerful stroke will be only delivered if the fulcrums or levers are fully working and connected. Joules x stroke is the number that represents the area inside of the curve.
After the rower learns how to position, get more length of stroke, connection and power, I take him to the water and ask him to repeat the same movements on the boat. There I ask him to look for the same feel of load and acceleration. The amazing thing is that the rower can really take the feel of the objective changes from the land to the water and actually make some changes for better.
Here are some key elements that will help you to get a better length of stroke and connection to the water:
- Good hang on the lats with extended arms if possible.
- Good body posture seating up
- Good hip rotation
- Good timing at the catch to load the blade before the legs go down.