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Rowing 5k

Discussion in 'General Health/Fitness & Injuries' started by johnyboy, Oct 2, 2007.

  1. johnyboy

    johnyboy Well-Known Member

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    There's a woman I work with who's a real pain in the arse. She's publicly challenged people a few times to race her over a 5k row on an indoor rowing machine (concept2), and I thought I'd find out what would be involved in beating her.

    She's a good club rower, but I don't know what that means in terms of likely 5k times. Anyone got any ideas on this?

    I've done it a couple of times now, my first time was 24:38 and I did it for the second time this morning and managed 22:59. I'm going to get some coaching from a professional rowing coach to make sure my technique is improving, and am going to train twice a week on this, carry on doing weights once a week and will keep playing squash once a week.

    I believe a good male club rower's 5k time would be about 18:30 - 19 minutes, and that Matthew Pinsent's record is about 15:30 (he's a British Olympic gold medallist).

    I don't want to let her know I'm training for this until my times are getting better, so if anyone has any ideas what a good female club rower might be expected to do over 5k then I'd really appreciate the advice.
     
  2. boLa8

    boLa8 Active Member

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    Hello! 5k's are a killer, my best is just under 18minutes, 17:54min which is not too bad for a 5"7 rower :D

    Women do around the 20-21minute mark, here are a few pointers.



    Do between 28-32Strokes per minute all the way, its not about getting high rating, its about getting a low 500m split! and going FAST!


    Look for your splits, make sure you..

    If your goal is to do 20mins, then aim for a 500m split of 2:00 minutes, try and keep it there or lower.

    500m: 1:50
    1000m: 1:55
    1500-4000m: 2:00
    4000m: 1:50
    Last 500m: GIVE IT EVERYTHING! Here is where the difference between a good time and a bad time goes, the sacrifice.. give it all, you will feel your legs, arms, back,abs and lungs burn.. you will want to stop and take a breath DONT, just pull harder the next time!! and in the last 100m give that and MORE!:mad:

    trust me, after a month doing this you will crave this feeling, you will want MORE, there will be a point where if you dont feel it atleast once a week the week will feel useless... like you havent achieved anything this week..



    This is from another post i made, but i have a feeling it will help u:


    Sounds like your technique (specially applying the power) is like many of the people i see in the gym, the problem is: thats how "expert" gym instructors tell you how to do it. ive been there, in the rowing machine while the "instructor" gives a "lesson" to people on how to row.. and it aint pretty!! :lol: i mean how can people row with that backpain...

    Anyway, technique! here its how i think(and all the rowing real experts) its best to take the stroke:

    POWER:

    Maximal power is achieved by appropriate sequencing of the contributing muscles from strongest to weakest.
    So you are sitted in the erg, and you move forward, your heels are just starting to get off the foot plate, your back is straight, your chest out, your arms straight.

    The Stroke

    1. LEGS FIRST......The quadriceps and gluteals

    Once the legs are straight,with the arms still straight you start with

    2.YOUR BACK, the lower back starts to rock back about 20degrees, still with your arms straight

    3. Then the SHOULDERS and ARMS... The latissimus dorsi, trapezius, rhomboids, and biceps(to mention a few!) so when your body moves back your hands start moving towards your chest.

    Most people think thats all you need, just move forward in what ever fashion and do it again. thats wrong because 1)you can hurt yourself and 2) the recovery is just as important as the stroke, imagine doing squats, you dont only focus in going down till you lock at horizontal, but you have to go up too! just as important and exactly the same in
    rowing.


    THE RECOVERY

    "Let the boat run, rest, and prepare for the next stroke"
    Its the same on the erg, the recovery is as important as the stroke when you pull

    you get to breath and "recover" to pull harder next stroke :evil:, position yourself as follow:

    1. remember your hands are in your chest, your lower back is rocked back.(bit like this angle \

    1. first go your arms until they are straight

    2.Then your body moves from \ to / so just a little forward, you start to feel the pressure on your abs.Perfect time to breath hard!

    3. your legs move forward until you are flexed and your chest hits your legs

    NOTE: DONT MOVE YOUR LEGS UNTIL YOUR HANDS ARE OVER YOUR KNEES, IF YOU HIT YOUR KNEES WITH YOUR HANDS THINK! WAIT FOR YOUR BODY TO MOVE FORWARD BEFORE BENDING THE LEGS!

    4. YOU TAKE THE STROKE AGAIN!

    And its a cycle



    Some TIPS:

    1. Head High- encourages good posture for body and spine

    2. Chest against thighs- Rotation should be centered around the hip joint, not the upper or lower back.

    get that 6pack working nicely! the abs is THE most important part of rowing, without them no matter how strong your legs are, or your arms and chest are you will simply not apply any power(this i think its what your problem is)

    3. Shins vertical- strong position for the quadriceps

    4. Relaxed but alert- poised like a cat ready to spring! always with hard abs and relaxed arms


    5.The power transferred through the handle to the erg(rowing machine)is only as much as the legs supply.

    6. A good technique is based on the work of the legs to create most of the total power.

    RHYTHM!

    Anyone can do 50strokes per minute(SPM) ive seen grannys do 60 :rolleyes: does that mean they are "fast"\ no. they simply are not taking the full stroke, rushing up and down the slide and using very, if any really little muscles..

    But how about doing 18 SPM, full power(when pulling) not so easy! in the stroke you never EVER stop, your body is always moving!



    Settings to be used:

    Anything in the middle is fine, 4-6 is perfect water resistance, its easier to get a better time with the setting on "hard" 10 but its not a better workout and profesional rowers use 5 for a reason :nod:

    Here is a video to illustrate all this i just typed:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nE0_PaRBXeA
    His technique is not "perfect"(specially his back) but it shows you the basics!

    I can assure you your times will go down FAST! and if you come back to this post in the future and re-read it you will understand it much better and hopefully help you beat your personal best's ;)


    like i said before:

    The power transferred through the handle to the erg is only as much as the legs supply.

    Good luck, hope it helps! :tu:

    boLa8
     
  3. zenpharaohs

    zenpharaohs Elite Member
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    Yeah bola8 is fast. I only get just under 19 minutes. I am also 5'7".

    My problem is the huge imbalance between my leg and back strength and my upper body strength. If I push hard with the legs and back I get my feet off the plate before the legs are fully straight. Eventually, I have sort of drifted away from rowing in favor of endurance deadlifting. Maybe I will get back to rowing this winter.
     
  4. zenpharaohs

    zenpharaohs Elite Member
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    I can relate. In my case, to shut up this one guy who can't get over how superior "on the water" rowing is to any other form of exercise, I challenged him to a row. Any distance over 80km he chooses. I didn't hear back from him on that.

    Rowing seems to be like fencing. Half the competitors are lovely people and the other half are utter pricks.
     
  5. boLa8

    boLa8 Active Member

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    Not as fast as i want to be tho :lol: under 19mins is a good time! :tucool:

    Sounds like your core muscles need a bit of work to catch up with does powerfull legs!

    When you pull, tight your stomach like if you are doing a pushup, like if you wanted to show off your 6pack to the girls in the beach ;) i dont do any abs exercise, none at all.. but a month ago when i was at my lowest weight(69.7Kg) i could see my 6pack quite easily! :spaz: All thanks to rowing! now i need to lose does dreaded 5Kg to get back into it, damn i wish i didnt like food this much :cry:
     
  6. boLa8

    boLa8 Active Member

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    Did i tell u i did a 50Km race last month? in the water! It wasnt as hard as i thought, except i couldnt feel my bum after the first hour.. 80Km? that would take 5hours :lol: no wonder u scared him to death!




    True, but, but without ***holes like this who is going to motivate you? ;) deep down, we thank them (I thank the girl that didnt date me for been fat last year :lol:, aparently she likes me now, cant wait until she asks me out! so i can say NO SORRY, you are too fat for me :lol:)


    Motivation like this is priceless, so johnyboy GIVE HER HELL! :tu:
     
  7. zenpharaohs

    zenpharaohs Elite Member
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    Interesting. I don't normally think of my core as weak, but you could have a point.

    I have never tried to tense the stomach on the pull though, I'll try that next time I row.
     
  8. boLa8

    boLa8 Active Member

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    The power transferred through the handle to the erg is only as much as the legs supply.

    ^But if your core muscles\stomach\abs\lower back are weak or not tighten then how are you ment to tranfer the power from the legs to the machine? it will all be lost in your middle section ;)
     
  9. zenpharaohs

    zenpharaohs Elite Member
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    I don't really think there is a problem transferring the power from the legs to the handle. But that is through the lower back. Now if I had to PUSH on the handle I could see contracting abs.

    Now my lower back is pretty strong, and has good strength endurance. Sometime try the 50 deadlifts at 315# in ten minutes workout. I've got it down to 10:08 now (see my sig). As far as back strength goes, rowing 2k on an erg really isn't that much of a challenge by comparison.

    So I don't get the part about having to contract the abs yet.
     
  10. boLa8

    boLa8 Active Member

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    you are probably right, 2k full throttle is no mean task tho, i mean 110% personal best sort of 2k.. they are killers!! i rather do a 5k any day!

    Found this, maybe helpful for anyone that is planning on using a rowing machine, Concept 2 of course!:

    http://www.crossfit.com/cf-info/excercise.html#Row
     
  11. zenpharaohs

    zenpharaohs Elite Member
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    I actually have less trouble with 2k full out than I do with 5k. I don't have a good explanation. I think it might be upper body strength endurance because I can pretty often go on elliptical for 20 minutes at heart rates (177) that I can't really handle on the erg (170 gets tough pretty quick). It's hard to get into a really comfortable rhythm for me on the erg so far, and I have put in over a million meters so I would have thought I would have figured it out.

    As far as videos go, it can be instructive, but one thing I had trouble with was figuring out what I was actually doing, as opposed to knowing what I was supposed to be doing.

    I like the idea of rowing, and if I'm not trying to achieve goals, rowing is fine, but I personally can usually make more progress toward fitness with lifting weights. I don't quite understand why though.
     
  12. mattback

    mattback Active Member

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    i miss my rowers sooo much since i don't have a gym membership anymore....

    i can only pray that my school has one this spring..

    bola: yes , i get a HUGE ab workout when i row... i must be doing things right... the rower helped me get a 6 pack
     
  13. 3rdto1st

    3rdto1st Active Member

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    I dont know what your times for 2k are, but i would rather do those than a 5k any day. When i finish a 2k, i am unable to walk or breathe or even see. its not a question of if but when i will throw up, and i will feel it for a few days.

    as far as the abs: your back should be perfectly straight, and swinging it back and forth between the finish and the catch should involve you swinging at the hips, so your abs should be the only thing you use for that.

    What bola said is correct, you need a strong core. Without one, all the power in your legs is shot, you will either shoot out your ass instead or use your back to pull, and both of those can cause injury easily.

    as far as the OP, be careful when you estimate how good she is. i am in a college program that is not varsity, yet i row it in 17:25 and there are women on my team who can row near that, so.... find out. But other than that, i say her ego is blown, good luck and hope you can take her.
     

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