PRC Newsletter. I know a way to warm up. A Vice Captain Reminder. the JUNE/JULY ROWING EVENTS. JB Sharp Series. JB Sharp Series.

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1 the A P R I L / M A Y PRC Newsletter I know a way to warm up Firstly a very big apology from me; It has been a little while since I have done a newsletter, but a bout of illness and then several weeks of trying to catch up has been to blame. So for those of you who have been hanging out for the next edition here it is! Winter seems to have definitely arrived this week with the thermals making an appearance back into my clothing repertoire. I certainly find that rowing (particularly super early) can become a little challenging when the warmth of bed seems so much more appealing than the cool water of the river! But if you can fight off the winter blues and make it out onto the water, I reckon it is one of the best times of year to row. Quiet. Still. Focused. So put on your beanie invest in some Skins and head out on the water. It will be completely worth it. HAPPY ROWING! Lizzie B Newsletter Editor A Vice Captain Reminder Just a quick housekeeping message please remember to hang the towels on the hooks provided (or if you are really desperate) the slings. Hanging wet towels on the hulls of the boats damages them. JUNE/JULY ROWING EVENTS JB Sharp Series 15/06/2014 GLEBE JB Sharp Series 29/06/2014 UTS Haberfield IRON COVE JB Sharp Series 13/07/2014 Drummoyne IRON COVE For full regatta calendar, check out

2 NEW MEMBERS We have several new members around and about so make sure if you see a new face to say a big PRC COMMITTEE 2013/2014 Patron & Life Member: Lee Wright Judy Mann is a new member at PRC Here is a little about her. Judy has spent the last six and a half years rowing around Lake Burley Griffin and is looking forward to joining PRC. She is now returning home to Baulkham Hills after working in the public service in Canberra. She originally learnt to row as a masters - and she wishes she could have had the opportunity when she was young. Her favourite event is the doubles - then quads, then eights, then fours - in that order. Her goal this year is to improve in singles and overcome the pair! She would rate herself as a fair to average masters class (G) rower and reasonably strong and fit - but needs more technique work. She is now looking forward to meeting new friends and rowing in different crews. She does coffee very well too! The picture to the left - that's Judy rowing on the River Arno last year after Turin. She enjoys trips away to regattas and marathons - and also leisurely relaxation rows for fun. WELCOME JUDY! President: Jenny Dooley Vice President: Warwick Fuller Jnr Vice President: Max Duignan Secretary: Laura Cowderoy Treasurer: Fiona Toose Club Captain: Terry McGrath Club Vice-Captain: Ian McRae Head Coach: Bruce Soane Regatta Entries Secretary: Jenny Dooley Regatta Entries Assistant Secretary: Laura Cowderoy Committee Member: Tracey Longden Committee Member: Peter Levett Committee Member Boatshed Committee Representative: Ian McRae Committee Member Boatshed Committee Representative: Steve Taite PRC Delegate to RNSW General Meetings: Fiona Toose Public Officer: Fiona Toose Newsletter Editor: Lizzie Barrett 2

3 Level 1 Coaching Course opportunity for women Every year, the NSW Union of Oarswomen offer a RNSW Level 1 Coaching Course for women in Masters rowing. If this is something that you are interested in for 2015, you can the Union s selection panel via stating your name, club, rowing experience and the reason you would like to do this coaching course. The successful applicant will be announced at the union s AGM in November This course can be taken anytime in This is a great opportunity! Get in quick; applications close the 1 st November Fiona s Update I am now an accredited Level 2 Boat Race Official with Rowing NSW. I am completing my accreditation for Level 2 Coach as well. Have spent most of this rowing season undertaking these courses, doing exams and practical work. Every club is required to provide volunteers to assist Rowing NSW with their running of the regattas. Our juniors and some older club members have undertaken boat holding and other volunteer tasks such as time keeping throughout the year for Rowing NSW regattas as well as the Nationals and World Rowing Regattas. As a Boat Race Official I also volunteer my time at each Regatta. For those of you yet to take the plunge into volunteering, I can thoroughly recommend it as a fabulous way to spend a day or two. The support of Rowing NSW for volunteers is excellent and the camaraderie most enjoyable. A fabulous way to support the rowing sport, as well as learn other aspects of the art of rowing and regattas. For those wanting to volunteer, there is the Winter series of the JB Sharps on the harbor on Sunday Mornings. They are always keen for volunteers. I will be a Boat Race Official at each event. You can check out the Rowing NSW website for more info ( As Public Officer and Treasurer of the club I will also be attending the NSW Treasurer s meeting on the 28 th May at Homebush. Cheers, Fiona 3

4 PRC NEWLETTER APRIL/MAY 2014 WORLDS WIN? Word on the street is that one of our most dedicated rowers the very lovely Kate Murdoch is training for Worlds! Kate is an amazing rower and to still be able to hold a conversation after a training row of 70km s makes her a pretty amazing athlete and superwoman! GO KATE! LEARN TO ROW The next PRC LTR program commences on Sunday 13th July. It will run for 5 weeks every Sunday from pm. As always, we are after volunteers to help run this program. If you are able to come along and help out one Sunday (or more!) you can let us know via or by writing your name on the list in the boatshed, which will be going up shortly. THANKYOU! Chicken & Zucchini Fritters with Avo Dip 2 eggs 3 tbsp gluten-free flour 300g cooked chicken breast finely shredded 2 cups grated zucchini, liquid squeezed out 1 small avocado mashed 1 tbsp chopped fresh basil 8 cups salad 4 slices gluten free toast 4 Combine eggs, flour, chicken & zucchini in a large bowel. Mix well. Combine Avocado and basil in a separate bowel to make dip. Grease a frying pan and place over medium high heat. Drop tablespoons of fritter mix into pan & cook until golden. Repeat to make 12 fritters. Serve with dip, toast and salad.

5 A DISSCUSION ON FIXED VS. DYNAMIC ERGOMETERS: IVAN HOOPER Since I sent out some comments regarding ergometer use, I have had quite a few s back regarding the use of the Row Perfect ergometer, or putting the Concept II ergometer on sliders. I am aware that there is some work underway investigating this issue, but currently there are not a lot of papers that have been published. In working through some of the literature I came across a website that goes some way towards explaining the physics of ergometer rowing (Dudhia, 1999). It discusses that a fundamental difference between the linear mechanics of a static ergometer (such as a Concept II) and a boat can be illustrated by the following test: If you sit at front-stops on an erg and then push your legs down you move backwards relative to room by an amount equal to your leg length If you sit at front-stops in a single and then push your legs down (oars out of the water) you only move backwards relative to the bank by an amount ~20% of your leg length - the rest of the motion is taken by the boat moving away from you. This is a result of the action-reaction principle (Newton's 3rd Law). The force applied by your legs to the stretcher acts equally on you and the stretcher. In the static case (ergometer), the stretcher is effectively attached to the whole planet so doesn't move - you do all the moving. 5

6 In the dynamic case (boat), the mass of the single scull is much lighter (typically 10-20%) than you, so it moves further than you do. This is not just a matter of the frame of reference: in the static case (ergometer) you are actually performing more work accelerating your whole body weight up and down the slides, thereby creating high levels of kinetic energy. In the dynamic case (boat) your body weight is relatively stationary, creating much lower levels of kinetic energy and thus requiring less work to be done to reverse this kinetic energy. It results in an athlete needing to put in six times more energy just accelerating and decelerating their own body weight, compared to on water rowing. A dynamic ergometer, such as the Row Perfect, attempts to simulate the mechanics of on water rowing by having the stretcher/flywheel also mounted on a rail. Attempts have been made to simulate the same effect by mounting the Concept II on sliders. Most of the literature that I have read was performed examining the Row Perfect ergometer in a mobile and fixed state. The weight of the Row Perfect mobile power head is approximately 19kg, which is not that dissimilar to the weight of a single scull. This is the weight that an athlete s leg drive is moving every stroke. Hence the manufacturer s claims that the mechanics of the Row Perfect and on water rowing are similar. The weight of a Concept II is nearly 28kg.When you include the mobile component of the sliders, the weight is around 35kg. If you consider the mechanics discussed earlier, when a Concept II is mounted on sliders there would be more motion of the rower and less motion of the ergometer when compared to the Row Perfect. Hence, my thinking is that sliders probably go a long way to replicating the mechanics of on water rowing, but still involve forces nearly double that of the Row Perfect. There are two recent papers that have both described the mechanics of static versus dynamic ergometers, using the Row Perfect in both a dynamic and fixed state. Bernstein et al (2002) found that average stroke length on the static ergometer was 53mm longer. They discussed that this is due to the higher kinetic energy associated with moving the whole body mass, as was discussed earlier. Colloud et al (2006) also discussed the higher inertial forces Ivan Hooper 15/09/2006 Rowing Australia SSSM Coordinator generated during the transition between the recovery and propulsive phases, especially at the catch. This kinetic energy, and / or inertia, has to decrease to zero for a change in direction to occur, thus something has to exert or absorb forces. Coming forward this force is absorbed by passive tissue structures of the knees resulting in an 8-10% increased leg compression (Kleshnev, 2005). It is reasonable to assume that the lumbar spine also absorbs some of this kinetic energy, creating an increase in lumbar flexion. Holt et al (2003) supported this when studying the effects of prolonged ergometer rowing. Over a 60 minute piece there were significant increases in the lumbar spine range of motion at the catch and total lumbar spine range of motion. At the finish it is the large hip flexors that act to decrease and reverse the kinetic energy of the trunk (Rekers, 2006). This places very high loads on the lumbar spine, equivalent to doing prolonged sit ups. This places large sheer forces across the structures of the lumbar spine, potentially contributing to injury (Stallard, 1994). Both Bernstein et al (2002) and Colloud et al (2006) found higher maximum stroke forces and power when using the static compared to the dynamic ergometer. They suggest that the passive structures of the rower s joints could be loaded more at the catch on the static ergometer when the lower limb joints and trunk are fully flexed. They both propose that these higher forces, imposed over a longer stroke, may be associated with injury. 6

7 Undoubtedly, higher forces applied over a longer distance means more work done by the body s muscles. More work done means earlier fatigue. Fatigued lumbar spine muscles may allow even more lumbar flexion, transferring higher forces to the passive tissues of the spine. The combination of lumbar flexion and muscular fatigue has long been identified as a cause of lumbar spine injury amongst rowers (Reid & McNair, 2000). After repetitive motion, protective muscle activity has been shown to be reduced, often for a number of hours after the exercise is completed (Gedalia et al, 1999) The ramification for rowers is that, during this period, the athlete may be more vulnerable to injury, even when they may not be experiencing high loading on the spine (Reid & McNair, 2000). Ergometer use and weight training are two modalities that are likely to load the trunk muscles more than on water rowing. Based on the findings mentioned above, placing these two training modalities in close proximity is likely to increase injury risk. In discussing ergometer versus on water rowing, Kleshnev (2005) noted several differences. He stated that the legs execute more work on a stationary ergo, but in a slower static motion. On the water the legs work much faster at the catch, when the force is not very high and therefore execute less power. In this aspect a dynamic ergometer stands somewhere between a stationary ergometer and on water rowing. This may be an aspect that coaches wish to utilise if they are looking to enhance leg training, but I question the value of this when the load and contraction speeds are significantly different to on water rowing. The other issue is that once the legs fatigue, the trunk then becomes a greater contributor to total work performed. As mentioned above, this leads to a fatigue of the trunk muscles, placing lumbar spine structures at higher risk of injury. In conclusion, the information that is currently available supports the idea that ergometer use is a risk factor for lumbar spine injury. It also suggests that the Row Perfect places much lower detrimental forces on the rower than the Concept II. It seems that placing the Concept II on sliders is also a way of reducing these detrimental forces, but this is probably not as effective as the Row Perfect. Ivan Hooper 15/09/2006 Rowing Australia SSSM Coordinator At this point in time, the Concept II is the standard for conducting physiological testing of the elite rower. I do not propose that this change immediately, but I do think that what machine we test on in the future needs further examination and evaluation. Issues such as injury risk and physiological specificity need to be considered when selecting the most appropriate way to test our athletes. In summarising the information that is currently available regarding ergometer use and its effects on injury, I would like to make the following recommendations: Reduce the volume of work done on Concept II ergometers in the stationary setting. Keep the maximum length of a piece on an ergometer less than 30 minutes. If more than 30 minutes is to be done in a session, make sure that the session is broken up into shorter pieces with appropriate rest and stretching in between the pieces. Where appropriate, use either the Row Perfect or Concept II ergometer on sliders. Where appropriate, use other forms of cross training. Consider using cross training in conjunction with ergometer training in order to achieve the necessary training volume. Endeavour to place ergometer sessions and weights sessions on separate training days, or at least several hours apart. 7

8 Provide good supervision of technique while athletes train on an ergometer. The level of attention to technical detail on an ergometer should be no different to when training on water. Ensure that athletes understand that the need for good technique while training on an ergometer is as important as when on water Be aware that some people will never have problems on an ergometer, while others may have significant problems. Coaches should be prepared to individualise training programs to suit each athlete. The recommendations made in this article are based on a balance between possible injury risks, and the acknowledged benefits of ergometer training. Ideally these recommendations are designed to stimulate thought when devising training programs. I would encourage coaches to consider both the potential benefits and the potential risks of all forms of training. Finally I would like to remind everyone that coaches have a duty to make their crews as fast as possible, without causing damage to the people for whom they are responsible (Stallard,1994). An ongoing challenge for all coaches is to minimise the potentially detrimental aspects of their training programs. Ivan Hooper 15/09/2006 Rowing Australia SSSM Coordinator References Bernstein I A et al (2002) An ergonomic comparison of rowing machine designs: possible implications for safety. British Journal of Sports Med; 36: Colloud F et al (2006) Fixed versus free floating stretcher mechanism in rowing ergometers: Mechanical aspects. Journal of Sports Sciences; 24: 1-15 Dudhia, A (1999) The physics of rowing: dynamic versus static ergometers. Gedalia U et al (1999) Biomechanics of increased exposure to lumbar injury caused by cyclic loading. Part 2. Recovery of reflexive muscular stability with rest. Spine; 24: Holt P J E et al (2003) Kinematics of spinal motion during prolonged rowing. International Journal of Sports Medicine; 24: Kleshnev V (2005) Rowing Biomechanics Newsletter; Vol 5: No 1 Reid D A & McNair P J (2000) Factors contributing to low back pain in rowers. British Journal of Sports Med; 34: Rekers, C (2006) Personal Correspondence. Stallard, M (1994) Regatta; 66, p22. Author: Ivan Hooper M.Phty.St (Sports Phty), B.Sc (HMS) APA Sports Physiotherapist Australian Institute Of Sport 8

9 PRC NEWSLETTER APRIL/MAY 2014 THANKS FOR READING! If you do not wish to receive the PRC newsletter in the future, please me at to let me know. If you have seen this copy in the shed, and would like to receive it electronically, you can also me at