Thursday 25 November 2010

Open Water Rowing with Harris Goldstein

Harris Goldstein is a self-confessed "guy who likes to drill holes in fiberglass" which I can relate to, being a guy who likes to bodge stuff up in plywood.
Harris runs the Open Water Rower Facebook page, containing the fruits of his experience drilling holes in fiberglass boats and rowing the results. 
I particularly like his ideas on oar length - people too readily assume that longer is better, but getting the length right is really about balance and ease of swing. I think he may have gone a bit too far, however.
Harris advocates a very narrow span between the rowlocks, 4ft as against the usual 5ft 3in, and using short 7ft 6in oars.
The result seems to be that the oars are steeply angled to the water, raising the handles up to shoulder height. While this gives lots of room for a comfortable return, I suspect he is sacrificing the ability to put on the odd burst of speed. If you are going to fit outriggers, why not go the whole hog?

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