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Rowing Terms for the Rower

Square

The oar blade is perpendicular to the water.

Feather

The oar blade is parallel to  the water. Handles should be at the same height as when rowing on the square.

Set

When the boat is set, it is  fully balanced with the gunwales level and equidistant from the water surface.

Run

The distance the boat moves after a stroke. It is measured by the distance between sets of oar puddles. The greater the distance between the puddle sets,  the more efficiently the boat is rowing.

Catching a Crab

A rower’s oar getting unexpectedly caught or stuck in the water resulting   in a loss of grip on the handle. Can be due to poor technique or rough water.

Check

When a boat’s momentum is interrupted or stopped during rowing. There should only be smooth acceleration of speed without any hard stops. This can be due to reaching the front stop on a slide or poor leg control on the recovery.

Digging

When the oar blade is too deep in the water. The oar should be just barely under the water surface or ~1” sticking out of the water on the drive. This can be due to a rower’s hands being too high or due to the set being down to your side.

Backing the Blade In

A rower’s oar should be entering the water just before they reach the catch in order to be the most efficient. There is a slight resistance or tug to the oar that can be felt in the handle, but this allows for a strong and solid catch.

Pressing Evenly

Keeping even pressure on your feet and in your seat during the Drive and Recovery. If it is uneven, it can affect the set.

Rush

Coming up the slide too  quickly during the recovery and can be one of the leading causes of Check. The legs on the recovery should facilitate  a smooth transition instead of a hard one up to the catch. This can be due to poor leg control.

Tea-Bagging

When the oar blade is too shallow in the water. The oar should be just barely under the water surface or ~1” sticking out of the water on the drive. This can be due to a rower’s hands being too  low or due to the set being  up to your side.

Missing Water

When a rower places their oar into the water too late. The oar blade should be entering the water just before the rower reaches the catch. This can be caused by not having good body and arm control on  the recovery.

Even Handle Heights

Handle heights should be even throughout the every stroke; even  in/out from the sternum. “Rainbow Rowing” is where hands are lifted midway through the stroke then  brought back to center and “Canyon Rowing” is where hands are lowered midway through the stroke then  brought back to center. Both affect     the set of the boat.

Shooting the Slide

During the Drive, moving the seat faster than the shoulders so it leads. The whole body should move together during the leg Drive. This can be due to changing the angle of the back instead of keeping it consistent throughout the Drive.

Skying

When the oar blade is too high off of the water. This can be due to a rower’s hands being too low or due to the set being up to your side.

Hanging at the Catch

Pausing right before placing the oar in the water at the catch. This can be due to Rush and arriving at the Catch before everyone else and thusly having to wait to place the oar into the water at the same time

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