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Rig Up Your Life Lesson 5: WHEN YOU SHOULD RIG

Exactly when should you rig your rowing equipment? That is one heck of a good question.

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Exactly when should you rig your rowing equipment? That is one heck of a good question.

We look at when you should do any activity as determined by two criteria. The first one is when you want to do something. The second is when you need to do it.

In our opinion the need to-do-it aspect is almost always stronger than the want to-do-it aspect — especially in the world of rigging.

This lesson is designed to do one thing and one thing only, that is to present to you the times that you might need to do rigging.


There are basically six different times when you may need to rig your equipment. Here are those times.

PURCHASING-RIGGING is the planning and buying of the equipment you'll be using for practices and racing.

PRACTICE-RIGGING is preparing and adjusting your equipment for training practices. This includes rigging to help correct technique problems and also those instances when you might have to adjust or repair riggers, or equipment on the water.

RACE-RIGGING is more involved because you are dealing with traveling, race-day preparations, and those nervous butterflies that makes everything seem like a major undertaking. Specifically, race-rigging is the fine tune adjustments you make to squeeze the last ounce of speed from your boat or team.

PEACE-OF-MIND-RIGGING is simply adjusting your riggers or testing your rigging numbers because you think or feel something may be off.

MAINTENANCE-RIGGING are the steps you take to help your equipment survive longer.

INDIVIDUAL-RIGGING is setting up the equipment for an individual. This differs from practice rigging in that it is more specific to finding the proper rigging for a specific person.

A DEEP BREATH Okay, six different times that you may need to do rigging. Take a deep breath, and don't get overwhelmed. These two points might help.

First. That list may look like an awful lot of rigging. Well . . . it is. But keep in mind that it is not all done at once. In fact, if you look at that list again, you'll notice that those are the times over the course of an entire season that rigging would need to get done, not just during the same day, or even the same week.

That help at all?

Second. You may actually have to only do some of those items.

If you are in charge of an entire rowing programme, or even just your own rowing, then each of those rigging needs should get done by you. But if you are helping out with a program, for instance as an assistant coach or volunteer, you might only be doing one or two of those items on the list.

Please keep this in mind, our philosophy about rigging is that it should happen in such a way that it occurs in the background — meaning that it happens seamlessly, without taking away from the fun or beauty of rowing.

So, now you have some information to help you answer the question we poised to you at the very beginning of this lesson . . . When should you rig?

We would suggest you file that information away for a few while we look at a different aspect in Lesson #6, Where should you rig?

About Rebecca Caroe
Rebecca is the host of RowingChat podcast and is a masters athlete and coach. Passionate about helping others enjoy the sport as much as she does. View all posts from Rebecca Caroe

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