Placing the oar in the water at the catch at the correct time is hard to do so today we share 3 ways to improve your skill.
- Quarter Slide Push Drill – Starting from catch position blades are placed into the water and one quarter (6 inches) of the slide is covered just by pushing with the legs. When quarter slide is reached the blades arc extracted remaining squared and recovery to catch position. Variant: 10 strokes Quarter slide push. 10 strokes legs only rowing, 10 strokes legs and back only rowing, 10 strokes normal rowing. Read more rowing coaching drills here
- Timing the catch off your knees – Instruct the crew to watch their knees on the recovery and when they stop rising (you will be at full compression) get the oar into the water BEFORE the knees are at their highest. Variant. Row with outside hand on the sweep oar only. Square blades. Then take inside hand and hold the back of your seat top – feel for when the seat stops moving at the frontstops and changes direction. Use this feeling of stopping moving as your timing point to have the oar already in the water.
- Attaching a plastic tube to the stern – Beautifully illustrated by Coach Nick Garratt at Mosman in this video. The idea is to prevent the water spout coming out of the tube from dropping off. The slower your catch, the more the spout drops down from its high point. This is best done with Singles and Doubles / Pairs as they are best able to see the water spout.