Rowing Workout of the Week: April 28

Last week we played around with some lower stroke ratings. This tends to be a big whole in a lot of rowers’ strokes. Quite often there’s a disconnect between rowing at a low (or slow) stroke rating and still going hard. We see that play out by athletes not being able to apply any pressure in order to hit the stroke rating, and then as soon as they try and apply pressure they end up increasing their rating.

Full disclosure: I don’t have a brilliant way to explain how to get better at this, besides: pull harder! Or rather, PRESS harder with your legs. That is the only way you are going to be able to go hard and slow at the same time. If you are at all passive with your legs – you will not go hard. Also, if you are either rushed with your leg drive or you tend to open up early with your legs or bend your arms too soon – you will get down the slide too fast. Instead, these need to be slow, powerful strokes. They should feel like they take FOREVER. And it should take an incredible amount of work to stay tight against that load/connection created at the front end. Rowing at low ratings shouldn’t be comfortable (aka: should be light or easy.) It should be hard and heavy.

But, and this is why we’re playing with low ratings, being effective at low ratings means that you can translate that connection to higher ratings. Low ratings insure that you have the ability to connect and use your legs like a champion. We want that. Thus, we will train that.

Rowing Workout of the Week

With a partner row 6000m as follows:

1st 1000m: alternating every 30 strokes
2nd 1000m: alt. every 25 strokes
3rd 1000m: alt. every 20 strokes
4th 1000m: alt. every 15 strokes
5th 1000m: alt. every 10 strokes
6th 1000m: alt. every 5 strokes

*Stroke rating needs to be 20-24 spm
**Use two different ergs / rowers.
***If you don’t have a buddy, timing would be about 1:00 / 1:00, :50 / :50, :40 / :40, :30 / :30, :20 / :20, :10 / :10, work / rest.

Don’t up your damper for this one. Think ladies no higher than a five, gents, no higher than a 7. I want you working on creating connection not having the erg fake it for you. 

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