While I was traveling recently, I tried the Invictus Rowing Club WOD. This is Shane Farmer’s creation – the same driving force behind CrossFit Rowing. This was a late night WOD done around 10 PM after a brutal day, so my splits were not what I would normally expect, but at least I got it done. This is a good one that I would like to re-try when I’m more rested. You can program this using the “Intervals –> Variable” function on the Concept2.
I have been reading Carlos Dinares’ blog recently and was intrigued by his post on the ideal rowing power curve after coaching some CrossFitters at CrossFit Ignite on how to use the power curve feature on the Concept2. Granted, the C2 static erg is a blunt instrument at best, but it introduces an interesting question about how the best in the world apply power and length in their rowing strokes.
I looked at the videos from the 2011 World Rowing Championships for the men’s single sculls and the men’s pair, won by men (Mahe Dysdale in the single and Eric Murray in the pair) who have legitimate potential claims to be the fittest people on earth by any standard The difference I noticed was that the top rowers in the pair reach traditional “full length” with the shins vertical, while both Drysdale and Synek in the single seem to be rowing at 3/4 slide but still achieving an optimal power curve. I have read analysis that Drysdale’s torso flexibility makes it possible for him to achieve maximum length without using the full slide, but the question remains why the top 2 boats in the single final appear to be achieving maximum speed at 3/4 slide while the top tow boats in the pair, rowing at similar stroke ratings, use the full slide length. What does this say, if anything, about optimal indoor rowing technique, which is traditionally correlated with maximum length on the slide?
If Carlos, Xeno, or Shane are reading this, I’d appreciate your opinions – thanks.
Regardless of the question, these videos are simply amazing to watch, considering that the times achieved in these races would be respectable for most college eights in the US.
Men’s Single Scull final:
Men’s Pair final:
If you haven’t already, check out the CrossFit Rowing Facebook page. My understanding is that while this is pretty new, it is/will be the official HQ-sanctioned build-out of rowing as a CrossFit discipline, and will be administered by Concept2.
There are some cool giveaways going on and the chance to vote on some goofy pictures, so check it out!
In case anyone noticed, there are also a couple pictures of a nifty SUP adapter for the Concept2 rower – I’ve got to get my hands on one of those!