Friday, 14 October 2011


This guy rowing what looks like a Cornish flashboat is Exhibit A in a British Rowing poster explaining the definitive method of fixed seat rowing. It is excellent, by which I mean that it reinforces all my prejudices. Download it here.


Patrick said...

It helps to reinforce mine too - no wonder I prefer sailing! A person of anything less than Olympic fitness and physique could easily get hurt doing a few minutes of that!

It looks unnatural and extremely stressful to me, but I assume this illustrates the way to row in competition rather than "For Pleasure".

I see the hands aren't overlapping. It seems there are differing views on this.

All the best, Patrick

Anonymous said...

It would seem to me that this is a further reason to build your boat with sliding seats.

ChrisP said...

Oh dear. Clearly the message has not been getting across.
This is the way to row smoothly and efficiently, to cover the distance with an easy stroke. Olympic fitness is not required unless you are racing.
Sliding seats are for racing. They are sprint mechanisms for getting the maximum speed over a short distance. Over the longer distance, this action can be kept up for hours. And yes, it is pleasurable. I had a lot of fun today doing just that.

Patrick said...

No, honestly, I'm serious! He's stretching too far forwards and outwards for comfort, and leaning back to an extreme angle - too far for safety, let alone comfort. I'm sure the recommended upper body angles for sliding seat rowing are nothing like so extreme.

Of course he is probably a very fit athlete, and accustomed to competition rowing. If I thought all rowing had to be like this I would buy an outboard!

Philip Meakins said...

Chris , I would say that the technique as shown would be very dificult to keep up for any extended time.Crossed hands would give you better gearing , and perhaps a greater distance between seat and oarlock would allow him to lean further forward in the catch and not quite so far back at the end of the stroke. I would favour staight arms through more of the power stroke.
Perhaps this technoque was developed for sprints?

Matt Petherbridge said...

Firstly, this isn't a flash boat it's a Cornish 15 ft Randan Skiff. Yes the stroke IS a racing stroke (hence the non overlapping oars, racing is non-lane around buoys with multiple boats so longer oars are impracticle), but it is designed to maximise stroke efficiency ina fixed seat boat. As for whether it's doable for the non-mega fit, I guess that depends how decrepit you are. All I can say is that I've rowed the 32 mile Edistone Challenge using it so that gives the lie to it being for sprints only, or "dangerously" over extended at either the catch or the finish.
It's all about using weight transference instead of purely muscle power to achieve the most efficient length of stroke.
Perhaps you should all give it a try instead of dismissing it on the basis of a complete lack of knowledge ?