In my personal opinion rushing the slide to the catch is an advantage to get the faster rowing and the most efficient rowing.
1- You use the action- reaction of the arrival and take off from the footstretcher. You recruit more muscles fibers. If you try to get the most high vertical jump you will go down before you go up. The same for rowing the faster you arrive to the stretcher the higher you can jump.
2- Use the trampoline effect describe by kleshnev in Rowing Biomechanics Newsletter February 2006. The “Trampoline effect” theory can have a number of consequences. Here are some of them:
1. Fast approach to the stretcher before the catch is beneficial.
2.Good timing is really important. Each rower has to feel the moment when he/she: a) kicks “the trampoline” and bends it; b) applies the handle force to support “the trampoline” from the other side; c) picks up the recoil force and uses the legs to accelerate the body CM.
3- It is easier to match crews because there is a clear pattern to get the crew to the catch, rush the slide.
4- It helps to get a direct blade into the water because there is no time for hesitation or doubts. Because everything is happening fast the blade can only go direct to the water with no thinking but action.
5- You can get extra length at the catch by using that inertia to the catch and placing the blade and picking up the boat before you get the stern to go down. This requires really good skill and timing.
6- You can square earlier because going fast to the catch will make balance easier and give less time to lose control of the boat with a square blade just before the catch.
7- Have a more clear pattern of hands level during recovery. You send your hands down to the knees to from there square early and without hesitation rushing the slide attack the water and catch the boat on time.
8- Be more elastic and dynamic.
What are the disadvantages of rushing the slide or when you cannot rush the slide?
You cannot rush the slide when you are learning to row or don’t have good timing at the catch.
The ability you have to place the blade on the water at the catch and pick up the boat is directly proportional to the possibility you have on rushing the slide. The more proficient the more you can rush. So if you are coaching novices or low skill rowers you cannot rush the slide and take advantage of the 8 points I listed because you cannot place and pick up the boat before you crash the stern.
Here you have some videos of good crews at low rate that rush the slide before the catch: