The Rowing Geek Test – fun quiz


ARE YOU A ROWING GEEK?  This fun quiz was started by Steven Timmons but I first saw it in about 1996 on the Rowing Service where they also have a ‘hall of fame‘ with top scores!

Are you a sad rowing geek ?

V1.0 Note : if more than one answer applies to you, then you have to total all thepoints for that question.

How long have you been rowing/sculling/coxing/coaching ?

  • a) less than 1 year 0 point
  • b) 1-2 years 1 points
  • c) 3-5 years 2 points
  • d) 5-10 years 3 points
  • e) longer than 10 years 4 points

Have you ever spent a whole day at the boathouse (sunrise to sunset)?

  • a) Yes 3 points
  • b) No 0 points

How many copies of the Britsh Rowing Almanac (or similar) have you got?

  • a) None 0 points
  • b) One, and it’s out of date 1 point
  • c) Several 2 points
  • d) the last 25 years, all arranged in order 4 points

How much kit have you got?

  • a) None, I wear my old rugby kit 0 points
  • b) Just a splash top and a racing vest 1 point
  • c) T shirts, sweatshirts, splash top, leggings 2 points
  • d) I can’t actually get in my bedroom any more 4 points

Have you ever turned down a date to go rowing ?

  • a) Yes 4 points
  • b) No 0 points

Have you ever :

  • a) been out with another rower ? 1 point
  • b) been to bed with another rower ? 2 points
  • c) co-habited with another rower ? 3 points
  • d) married another rower ? 4 points

Has whether you could row ever influenced your choice of job or university ?

  • a) Yes 4 points
  • b) No 0 points

Have you ever held office in a boat club ?

  • a) No 0 points
  • b) Minor post (social secretary, i/c equipment) 1 point
  • c) Secretary/Treasurer/Vice Captain 2 points
  • d) Captain 4 points
  • e) “I’ve been captain for the last 10 years because no one else is capable of running the club properly ” 5 points

Have you got any friends who are not connected with rowing ?

  • a) Yes 0 points
  • b) No 4 points

Have you ever attended a rowing reunion ?

  • a) Yes 3 points
  • b) No 0 points

Do you :

  • a) read rec sport rowing ? 2 points
  • b) post to rec sport rowing ? 3 points
  • c) have your own rowing-related WWW page ? 4 points

Do you subscribe to :

  • a) Regatta ? 1 point
  • b) Rowing ? 2 points [sadly defunct] Maybe substitute Rowperfect news?
  • c) FISA Coach ? 3 points
  • d) A foreign rowing magazine ? 4 points

Have you ever been to a regatta just to watch ?

  • a) Yes 2 points
  • b) No 0 points

Do you own :

  • a) an ergo ? 2 points
  • b) a sculling boat ? 3 points
  • c) a pair/double ? 4 points
  • d) a four/eight ? 5 points

Do you own video of :

  • a) Yourself rowing ? 1 point
  • b) Olympic/Worlds ? 2 points
  • c) Yourself rowing at the Olympic/Worlds ? 4 points

Have you ever :

  • a) been on a training camp ? 1 point
  • b) organised a training camp ? 2 points
  • c) attended a national team trial ? 5 points

Now go and do version 2….below


By Quarrell, Mavra, Kelly, Ayling, Palmer, Jowitt and Manners unless otherwise indicated.  As before, where multiple parts of a question apply, add all the scores to your (sad) total.

Do you own your own

  • a) sculls 2 pts
  • b) coxbox 3 pts
  • c) rate-watch 5 pts
  • d) heart-rate monitor 1 pt
  • e) Stroke-Coach or Pace-Coach or similar? 4 pts
  • a) I don’t train seriously enough to need a heart monitor. 0 pts
  • b) I use my heart monitor while training on the erg. 1 pt
  • c) I use my heart monitor while rowing. 2 pts
  • d) I use my heart monitor while coxing. 5 pts
  • e) I had my heart monitor surgically implanted. 10 pts (thanks to Stuart Fogg)

Have you ever

  • a) worn your heart-monitor watch as a normal watch? 1 pt
  • b) made love with your heart-monitor on? 5 pts
  • c) made love with it on your partner? 10 pts

Do you take

  • a) Powerbars 0 pts
  • b) Maxim 2 pts
  • c) Hi-Five 2 pts
  • d) ErgoMax 3 pts
  • e) Crash WeightGain? 5 pts
  • Add 2 points if you buy your own of any of these rather than just having manufacturers’ free samples or scamming a bit off a friend.

Do you subscribe to Peak Performance magazine?

  • 5 pts (sheer geek-dom)

Do you have

  • a) an adjustable spanner? (wrench) 0 pts
  • b) a whole toolkit of stuff 3 pts
  • c) your own pitch gauge 4 pts
  • d) your own height stick 5 pts
  • e) Have you ever lost more than 20 tools in a year? 10 pts

(for UK only, unless there is an equivalent) Do you know

  • a) your own ARA registration number? 1 pt
  • b) anyone else’s? 2 pts
  • c) The phone number of the ARA (equiv. USRowing etc.) 3 pts
  • d) the names of more than 15 of your national squad members? 3 pts (including coaches)

Do you have on your wall:

  • a) A blade or rudder or broken bow section? 1 pt
  • b) Photos or pictures of rowing or rowing-related scenes? 1 pt
  • c) Photos of yourself rowing? 1 pt
  • d) Newspaper clippings of yourself rowing? 2 pts
  • e) Newspaper photos of yourself rowing? 3 pts
  • f) The Empacher calendar? 5 pts
  • Half marks for any of the above if you have them, but in a draweror cupboard rather than on your wall.

Do you

  • a) Keep a training diary? 1 pt
  • b) Know your current resting pulse? 2 pts
  • c) Know the dates of next year’s Worlds? 3 pts

Have you ever

  • a) stayed sober at a party ‘cos you were rowing in the morning? 1 pt
  • b) rowed when hungover? – 2 pts
  • c) rowed when still drunk? – 3 pts
  • d) seat-raced and won when still drunk? – 5 pts

Do you know

  • a) the spread range for a 4- ? 1 pt
  • b) how to correct lateral? 2 pts
  • c) what lateral is? 2 pts
  • d) the difference between spread and span? 3 pts
  • e) how to measure the pitch on a hatchet spoon? 5 pts (please note, anyone answering yes to this, tell me asap…)

Have you ever written a training programme? 2 pts

  • Just for yourself? 4 pts

Do you know

  • a) any world record times? 2 pts
  • b) Any record times for any Henley Royal markers? 2 pts
  • c) the last five consecutive record-holders in either of the above? 4 pts

Can you

  • a) Name all the A-final crews in any of the 1994 Worlds events? 3 pts
  • b) Ditto 1992 Olympics? 4 pts
  • c) And for either, list the order in which they finished? 5 pts
  • d) Including who was leading at, respectively, 500 and 1000 metres? 5 pts
  • Scores for this question invalid if you competed in said final.
  • Double points if you can do this for any B final of any Worlds or Olympics that you didn’t compete in.

Do you know

  • a) the rigging of any boat at the last Worlds or Olympics, 3 pts other than your own (if applicable)?
  • b) the names of all the members of any country’s eight 2 pts (M, W, LM or LW) other than your own country’s?
  • c) The names of any of the True Blue chapters? 3 pts
  • d) Who came top in any of the tests in True Blue? 2 pts
  • e) The results of all the trials in Assault on Lake Casitas? 3 pts

Do you know how tall and heavy any foreign 1994 World medallist is? 3 pts

When asked to do an erg test with a certain score cutoff, do you

  • a) work out the average split on a calculator 1 pt
  • b) work it out in your head 2 pts
  • c) say it straight away because you know the lot by heart 3 pts
  • d) Is your calculator used for anything other than splits? No 2 pts

Have you ever founded a boat club? 20 pts

Have you ever rowed in an event (specific class and regatta) more than two years in order to “defend your title”? 2 pts

  • Do you have blisters? 1 pt
  • Do you have callouses? 2 pts
  • Have you ever told a partner that rowing blisters/callouses are sexy? 3 pts

Have you ever fallen asleep at 9:30 pm after training? 1 pt

  • In front of the television? 2 pts
  • Into your food? 3 pts

Have you ever rowed more than 50 km in one day (sunrise to sunset)? 2 pts

Is your definition of a “Day”

  • a) a period of 24 hours 0 pts
  • b) a period of time from the end of one outing to the next 2 pts
  • c) a period of time containing two outings 4 pts (Will Wadsworth)

Have you ever had more than 2 weeks away from rowing, other than

  • 1) foreign holiday,
  • 2) injury, or
  • 3) enforced due to exams or work?
  • In other words, are you capable of taking REAL TIME OFF? a) Yes – 4 pts b) No 2 pta

Can you list the events at Henley Royal Regatta and

  • a) explain their status and entry requirements? 2 pts
  • b) For any Henley event, do you know the last 10 winners? 3 pts
  • c) Are you a member of HRR Stewards? 3 ptsd)
  • Are you a Steward of HRR? 5 pts

For any stretch of river with more than 10 boatclubs on, do you know all their names and colours?

Can you identify more than thirty clubs/universities/schools by blade color? (Meredith)

  • a) Yes to either 2 pts
  • b) No to either 0 pts

If you take the number of pots/medals/shields/wins/trophies that you have, and divide it by the number of years you have spent rowing so far, do you have

  • a) a sensible 0-5? 0 pts
  • b) a show-off 6-10? 2 pts
  • c) a manic 11-20? 3 pts
  • d) more than 20 per year? 5 pts

Have you ever

  • a) chosen a house based on where you want to row? (Bill McGowan) 2 pts
  • b) Score one bonus point for every mile that your place of work is further than the boathouse (Harrison)
  • c) Do you lie about this to your non-rowing friends (eg Chiswick’s a nice area, etc.)? 2 pts
  • d) bought or built a house which has a boathouse or a room long enough to store or repair a shell? (Bonniev) 5 pts

How many other rowers are in your house/flat?

  • a) 0 0 pts
  • b) 1 1 pt
  • c) 2 2 pts
  • d) 3 4 pts
  • e) 4+ 6 pts (Chris Harrison)

Work and Home life

  • a) I have to drive a long way from work to the boathouse. 0 pts
  • b) I got a job near the boathouse so I can walk there from work. 1 pt
  • c) I got the boathouse wired on the Internet so I can work there. 2 pts
  • d) I got my boat wired with a cellular modem so I can work there. 3 pts
  • e) What’s work? 4 pts (Stuart Fogg)

If you have children, do they

  • a) row? including Playboats 2 pts
  • b) go to a rowing school? (Bonniev) 3 pts
  • c) have small-size versions of your rowing shirts? (Sullys) 4 pts
  • d) What age were they when you first put them on an erg? 10 minus Age pts EACH

Have you ever traveled over 2,000 miles for:

  • a) four 1,000-meter races? 2 pts
  • b) three 1,000-meter races? 3 pts
  • c) two 1,000-meter races? 4 pts
  • d) one 1,000-meter race? 5 pts
  • (add 1 pt. if you did not medal; add 5 points if you “DFL’d”; add 8 points if you actually DROVE the equip. trailer all that way AND DFL’d.)
  • What’s DFL’d? (RQ) (Question by Bill McGowan)

For those who are married.  Score half if you have an unmarried live-inpartner.

  • a) My spouse doesn’t mind the time I spend rowing. 1 pt
  • b) My spouse thinks I spend way too much time rowing. 2 pts
  • c) My spouse is filing for divorce while I’m rowing. 3 pts
  • d) Do I have a spouse? 4 pts

Score is not affected by how much partner or spouse rows themselves. (Stuart Fogg)

  • a) I married someone I once coached. 3 pts
  • b) I have attended a wedding in a boathouse. 2 pts
  • c) My wedding was outdoors and the dress was casual. 0 pts
  • d) My wedding was in a church and the groomsmen stood 0 pts in matching outfits.
  • e) My wedding was at the academy and the groomsmen stood 1 pt with crossed swords.
  • f) My wedding was at the boathouse and the groomsmen stood 4 pts with crossed oars.
  • g) My wedding was in the boat where the groomsmen would 8 pts never stand or cross their oars. (Bill McGowan and Stuart Fogg.)

Have you ever brought a date to a regatta

  • a) that you were racing in? 1 pt
  • b) that you weren’t actually racing in? 3 pts
  • c) when she had flown three thousand miles to go to a ball with you and was only staying in the country for under 36 hours? 5 pts (Charles Ehrlich)

Do youa) spend

  • a) more than 1/10th of your income on rowing (Bonniev) 2 pts
  • b) use your hardware for Christmas decorations (MMB) 2 pts
  • c) know any regatta officials on a first-name basis? (MMB) 1 pt each
  • d) when cross-training, still count in tens? (MMB) 3 pts
  • e) ever look in the sports section of a bookshop for rowing books? 2 pts
  • f) Does your work have anything to do with rowing? 25 pts

Do you

  • a) I use club or college oars. 0 pts
  • b) I keep my own oars at the boathouse. 1 pt
  • c) I keep my oars at home and carry them to the boathouse every day 2 pts
  • d) I sleep with my oars. 10 pts (Stuart Fogg)
  • a) My grips still look new. 0 pts
  • b) It’s time to replace my grips. 1 pt
  • c) I replace my grips every month. 2 pts
  • d) I replace the skin on my hands every month. 3 pts (SF)
  • a) When I pass another car I use my left/right turn signal. 0 pts
  • b) When I pass another car I use my port/starboard turn signal. 1 pt
  • c) When I pass another car I turn up the Cox Box and yell louder. 2 pts
  • d) When I pass another car I pull harder on the steering wheel. 3 pts(SF)
  • a) My rowing shorts look fine except where I spilled cappuccino. 0 pts
  • b) I have worn holes in my rowing shorts. 1 pt
  • c) I have worn holes in my butt. 2 pts
  • d) I have worn holes in my tracks. 3 pts (SF)
  • a) I wear mostly dress shoes. 0 pts
  • b) I wear mostly athletic shoes. 1 pt
  • c) I wear mostly athletic shoes soiled with bird droppings/mud 2 pts
  • d) The only shoes I own are attached to my boat. 5 pts (SF)
  • a) I wash all my kit straight after training 0 pts
  • b) I let my kit dry and then re-use it for the next outing 2 pts
  • c) I always change out of kit after training 1 pt
  • d) I have worn rowing kit on a day when I didn’t train 3 pts (RQ)
  • a) I walk at a leisurely pase and enjoy the scenery. 0 pts
  • b) I walk at a brisk pace and enjoy the exercise. 1 pt
  • c) I walk with my friends and get annoyed if one gets out of step. 2 pts
  • d) I walk backwards and occasionally look around to avoid tripping 5 pts on a buoy.(SF)

And take a while browsing the comments at the bottom of the page from people who took the test..

  • “Total of both test versions – 187. My honeymoon was a trip to the Charles regatta in 1988. Both kids have been to training camps from the ripe ages of four months.” (Gilles Philippe)
  • “I just took version 2.0 and scored 141.5. There must be something wrong, I’ve only been rowing for 10 years. Ooops, gotta run, it’s time to lift weights, and erg afterwards…” Cheers, Oliver Rosenbladt
  • “I got 124 on the two tests. I’m a rower at Brisbane Grammar School in Australia. I also did the test for a co-rower and he scored 476 on the two tests. My name is Adam Fenwick his is Sean Coulton.”
  • “If I add both scores from the first and second version of the test, I get a fine total of 55 points. Is there still hope for me of ever getting back to normal again?” B’vo Skadi Tibbe van Leeuwen, Erasmus Universiteit Rotterdam, The Netherlands
  • “I really am a rowing geek, but they wouldn’t let me in the clare third novice boat. If they had let me in i’m sure i would have scored at least 75.” Mark Weaver.
  • ” Got a 21 on V1.0 and 44.5 on V2.0 (1/2 pt for having a live-in girlfriend who doesn’t seem to mind the time I spend rowing)… Isn’t there some statute of limitations on how many years ‘rowing while drunk/hung over’ effects your score?”. R. D. Widman

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