Everyone seems to be frightened of rigging. It’s got a reputation for being complex and hard to master – this is unwarranted.
Luckily for us, the British Rowing Rigging Forum has done research which all coaches can learn from and easily use.
Stephen Aitken runs the forum (available to British Rowing members via Row How inside your login – search for Rigging Forum and join the group). He presented to the British Rowing conference in January 2013 and has kindly shared his slides which explain a series of experiments he ran in which 4 things were varied – see picture
- stretcher position
- distance between handles at the finish
In summary, his team found option 3 is the only one that works well. This is
Reducing inboard and span equally and adjusting stretcher to keep hands the same at finish works giving increases in all angles, catch, finish and sweep (total).
Stephen has produced a slide deck detailing the summary (first 9 slides) and the detail including graphs showing the angle changes.
The spreadsheet which accompanies the slides can be downloaded here. Rowing Rig angle changes due to span and inboard
There are two tabs on the spreadsheet – one for sweep and one for sculling.