Rowing During The Off-Season

Tritons team stays in shape for the coming sprint season


Women’s 8+ rowing up to the start line. Photo Courtesy: M. Leete

William Collins, Emma Howell-Leman, Staff Writers

  After a long winter season of rowing, the Tritons are heading into spring season on March 13. The first few weeks of spring season will be mostly on ERGS, or rowing machines, until the water has completely thawed.

  “Rowing is really challenging, but we put in a lot of work every day at practice. When we aren’t in the water, we are on the rowing machines and we do different pieces every day depending on what we were focusing on, like it might be endurance or strength and then when we are on the water, the different pieces and distances we go depend on what we are working on,” freshman Madelyn Leete said.

  During the spring and fall seasons, rowing is very competitive, with many races and chances to place, whereas in the winter, with the water frozen, the team has to stay indoors.

Tritons team gather following fall home regatta. Photo Courtesy: T. Tarchak-Hiss/staff

  “In the winter, we practice in a gym on the ERGS, and we practice five days a week for just an hour versus when the lake is [thawed], we practice for two and a half hours, six days a week,” junior Ainsley Bielman said.

  Rowing in the winter is optional however those who involve themselves see significant progress. Even while having to stay indoors, the rowing team has lots to work on. They primarily focus on the ERGS where they simulate rowing in an attempt to get faster and better. 

  “Everyone that does winter is starting to improve, I personally have improved. I’ve PR’d on all my pieces on the ERG. So I’m just looking forward to spring and getting faster,” Bielman said.

  The winter season of rowing functions very differently from the spring and fall, and provides different skills and training for the members involved. 

  “[In the normal season,] we start with a run. Then we go in boats and we do our pieces,” senior Tobin Derks said.

  Rowing, however, is not a light commitment. Those involved in winter training or those who work out outside of rowing, often find themselves more successful and better prepared for their regular season. 

  “Well, I’m not doing winter training. If I was, I would do it every day, but I go to the Y twice a week to row,” Leete said. 

  Rowing is a sport where students can learn teamwork skills as everyone in a boat has to work collaboratively, however, it can be physically tolling and a difficult sport to be a part of.

  “I think the biggest challenge is to keep pushing hard after you are already tired,” Leete said.

  Rowing is an environment where many students find  their place during their high school years. The reason for this is because everyone has to pull their weight and it forms emotional bonds between students.

  “It’s a really caring sport; everyone on the team really cares about each other, and we’re all really close,” Bielman said.