Let’s think that we are having a problem with a commercial property we own. Somebody want to sue me because I want them out of there because they are not paying their rent. They want to sue me because they say that I have not cleaned and maintained their space/shop as requested and have not contacted them soon enough to get them out of there. Anyway I have a problem because i want this people out of there because I want to sell the property. I have a problem. I need a good lawyer to help me.
Here is where the process starts: I need to choose a lawyer that can solve my problem.
What are the questions or clues that will give me some good intuition about the lawyer I want to hire?
- Do I care that the lawyer went to Penn Law School? NOT REALLY
- Do I care that the lawyer had good grades at Penn Law School? NOT REALLY
- Do I care that the lawyer has 20 years of experience? YES I DO CARE
- Do I care that the lawyer has worked on commercial property rentals for 20 years? YES I DO CARE
- Do I care that the lawyer has won the majority of the cases he has defended? YES I DO CARE
- What is the highest and more important thing that will make me choose my lawyer?
Performance on trials on situations like mine over the years. I want a lawyer that has defended people like me and won all the time in different trials situations over the years. This is the lawyer I want.
Ok now let’s put that INTO ROWING.
Let’s think that we are having a problem with a boat that is not going fast enough. And the club is asking me to make them faster or I will lose my job. They want this boat to increase their speed on the water to win a big race. Anyway I have a problem because I need to make the boat 10 seconds faster and need to do something. I need to make a good move with my selection process and lineup to pick up speed.
What are the questions or clues that will give me some good intuition or feel about the lineup and selection process?
- Do I care about their fitness level? YES I DO CARE.
- Do I care about their technique and ability to move a boat? YES I DO CARE
- Do I care about their ability to match people? YES I DO CARE
- Do I care about their Erg score? YES but it doesn’t really assure me the best scores are the fastest rowers
- Do I care about their 2 mile Run test score? YES but it doesn’t really assure me the best runners are the fastest rowers
- Do I care about their results on past races and results this year on the water? YES I DO CARE
- DO I care about their ability to match other rowers? YES I DO CARE
- DO I care about their maturity as athletes? YES I do care
- Do I care on their results on training on 1x and 2-? YEs i do care
What really makes a boat go faster is a good group of individuals that are fit to row on the water, with very high rowing skill that can match to each other perfect, believe in each other, their coach and race hard to win at whatever cost. The erg score is just an indicator of their fitness level that doesn’t assure speed on the water at all.
Ok said that what is my point here?
A young rower calls me to train with me. After talking for few minutes I ask him what is his dream? He answers rowing the Olympics one day. Then I explain to him what are the things that need to be done to get there and the time it takes and I explain the process to row at the Olympics. On this process I explain that we are going to be working on the land with rowing machines that give power curves and good feedback. Dynamic ergs to develop the coordination, body and fitness the right way.
After that I ask the rower to tell me what are his doubts about the process and this system.
His answer is clear:
- Well I’m confuse, what is the split on this new machine compared to the regular erg?
- How do I know what split i will need to work at?
- How do I know I’m doing well in reference to the others and my past tests?
- How can I win if i don’t get the score I want to get on the regular erg?
The amazing thing to these questions is that the rower never asked me?
- How do you monitor that I’m getting faster on the water with your training system?
- How you will know the intensity I need to row on land and splits?
- Why are you sure working on this dynamic erg is better than on the regular erg?
- How long it will take me to be a fast rower on the water?
- How much time we will be working on the water versus on land?
The amazing here is that our system has developed so much obsession about the score on the “erg” that now all the young rowers are thinking that they cannot be good until they don’t get “the score”.
Well the truth is that in order to be a good rower first you need to learn to move a boat and row and it takes a long, long time. After that you need to develop your fitness on a smart way over the years that will give you the chance one day to reach your full potential.
It is sad that many young rowers that are in love with rowing are scared or intimidated by the “erg score” and giving up on the sport because they cannot reach those goals. It is too bad because many good rowers all over the world have started having normal or bad “erg scores” or none when they were starting to row and 8, 10 years later are successful and fast.
If you love rowing and you love gliding, get on the water and row and get faster everyday. If you don’t like to erg, don’t erg and if you need to, just do it to help you go faster on the water. I have seen slow people on the erg really fast on the water. You might not be able to win the Olympics with a bad “erg score” but you can win a lot of races if you are fit, coordinated, technically efficient, very excited about rowing, consistent on your training and tough.
To give you an example you can go to:
and see at the world rowing FISA website the results of the Italian rower Franco Sancassani. He is I believe 9 or 10 times World champion as a lightweight for Italy. Do you think he has won so many times because of his erg score?
I think he has won because:
- His country has a good system to develop good rowers and keep them at the top.
- He is very fit, rows very well and can match people perfectly.
- He believes on his system, teammates and coaches.
- he works as hard as necessary to be the best he can be.
I won’t be surprised if Franco doesn’t do erg testing anymore. He might have a better way to measure his performance on the water that can assure him good results on the water.