October 12, 2012

5 Tips for Success in Collegiate Rowing: Open Men

Our blog feature this week is "5 Tips for Success in Collegiate Rowing" from Oklahoma City Training Center athletes. Each weekday, our athletes will give pointers on how to get the most out of your collegiate rowing experience. If you have any specific categories of interest, tweet your ideas to @RowOKC_HP !
Today's tips, for Open Men, are from 2012 London Olympian, Tom Peszek.

Tom Peszek is a University of Michigan graduate and a 2012 London Olympian, finishing in 8th place in the Men's Pair with Silas Stafford. While competing in the Men's Pair at the 2011 World Rowing Championships in Slovenia, Tom placed 9th, achieving Olympic qualification for in the United States in the Men's Pair. In 2010, Tom was the stroke of the Men's Eight at the World Rowing Championships in New Zealand. You can follow Tom on twitter at twitter.com/TomPeszek .

5 Tips for Success in College Rowing: Open Men

1. More Steady State

My biggest regret from college rowing was that I simply did not do
enough extra steady state rowing and I always had a relatively
lackluster erg score as a result. A massive aerobic base is what makes
the difference in the back half of the race, so even if you can only
fit in a couple of 30-minute extra sessions a week, the dividends will
be enough to put your bow ball out in front when it matters.

2. Where’s Your Head At?

One of the great things about rowing as a sport is that each crew has
its own lane and the time that it takes you to go from the start to
the finish is completely independent of what the other crew does –
there is no way to play defense in rowing. So while racing, it is
useful to be aware of where the other crew is, but you must always be
single-mindedly focused on doing what it takes to make your boat move
as fast as possible. Looking out of the boat to see what the other
crew is doing can only hurt your own speed and will never make you

3. Make Every Kilometer Count

During long training sessions it can be very easy to zone out and just
go through the motions, especially on the erg. But every kilometer
spent without a determined focus on the technical aspects of your
rowing is a wasted kilometer. Make sure that, for every kilometer
you’re on the water, you are completely dedicated to at least one
specific technical change.

4. Fake It ‘Till You Make It

Race day is only a nerve-wracking day if you let it be. On race day,
confidence is king. So even if your confidence level is low, fake it.
The mere act of pretending to be confident will make you a more
confident and stronger rower. This is especially critical in team
boats, where confidence and nervousness are always contagious – never
let your teammates see you as anything except completely confident.

5. Pull Harder

You aren’t pulling hard enough. Pull harder.

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