- I rowed on machines at the fitness club,
but I don't like them
- I'm not in very good shape
- Can I race?
- I don't want to race
- What injuries can happen in rowing?
- How can I get started?
- Tell me about the boats
- Why do you row so early in the morning?
Rowing is a resistance exercise. Just like weightlifting, proper technique is important. A few times in a boat under the supervision of a coach can make your ergometer rowing much better, but you may find that the sunshine, fresh air, quiet, and group atmosphere of rowing on the river is worlds away from pulling on a machine. Most rowers consider rowing the machine a necessary evil to get a good winter workout, but would rather work hard for 2 hours on the river than 20 minutes on a machine. Even if you do not wish to row with us on the water, get some instruction from us to row the ergometers properly. Your back will thank you. See our Ergometer tips page.
Rowing is an activity where you can start from virtually any fitness level. About the only limitation is if you can fit the equipment. We have had people in boats from 4'8" and taller and from 80 lbs to 300 lbs. Age is not really an issue, we have had rowers from Jr. High to octogenarians. Rowing is an excellent exercise for heart patient rehabilitation. If you are physically disabled, drop us a line and we will work with you to get you into a boat. Quadriplegics have been able to row.
Yup. Somewhere else in the state, the region, the country, and even the world, there are people in the same physical shape and age group you are starting to row. Your first season there will be novice events where you will be able to compare yourself with other like minded people, but ultimately you measure yourself against where you want to be. The competition is just a benchmark for your personal progress toward your fitness goals.
You don't have to. About 3/4 of our adult membership row just for the exercise.
About the only injury specific to rowing is blisters on the hands. These are easy to take care of and after a few weeks your hands will toughen and you will no longer be bothered with them. Improper technique can lead to muscle strain, most probably in the lower back, but with proper technique, this is not a problem. The rowing stroke uses virtually all major muscle groups, so you will have some soreness after your first few rows as you exercise new muscles, but that goes away as well. You will not be able to get a hard workout immediately as you need to master the rowing stroke. As you make gains in your technique, you will be sneaking up on your physical ability.
Weather forces us off the lake for safety sake from about the 1st of December to maybe mid February. We schedule some ergo and learn to row lessons. Visit our calendar to see when our next Learn to Row sessions begin. You can also contact us and let us know your situation.
Rowing started several millennia ago, probably started with fixed seat - one man on one oar rowing. The Greek navies used three men on an oar and three decks of oarsmen. These ships, called triremes, could achieve amazing speed, legend has it they could cruise at better than 10 knots. Modern reproductions have verified theses boats were very fast. The modern collegiate type shell came about when the rolling seat was popularized in the 1870's. Before that, oarsmen greased their backside and slid back and forth on a smear of lard. The boats were then made of cedar, the oars were best built of Sitka spruce. Today carbon fiber, kevlar(r), fiberglass and other modern materials have become the choice of manufacturers.
Not all of us do, some of us do, and some row in the afternoon or evening. The morning is the most predicable calm water so many of us who row the smaller boats like the early morning. It all depends on when you can come to row. If you like the evening, come down with that group.