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  1. #1
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    Are there any rowers here?

    Machka and I have taken out a month-long membership of a fitness centre here on the eastern outskirts of Vancouver as we wait to head back to Australia. The weather, as in other parts of North America, has been icy, to say the least, so cycling isn't really been on our agenda at the moment (yeah, we've gone a bit soft).

    Part of the reason is to get our fitness back up to some semblance of good after our travels and before we get back into the work harness, possibly in the agricultural sector.

    I've been concentrating on cardio and today did 15 minutes on the spin bike at a steady pace (no intervals), 15 minutes on the rowing machine, 15 minutes running on the treadmill, and 15 minutes doing 8x25m laps of the pool, followed by 10 minutes lazing about in the swirl pool to "recover".

    I rowed way back when I was at school in a lightweight four which culminated in our winning the Head of the River for our state and our class. I've also puddled about in dinghies as yacht tenders over the years. I love it.

    We have a light fibreglass kayak at home that seems eminently suitable for conversion to a single scull. Rowing is probaby more akin to cycling than my other favourite pastime, sailing, because the rower is the boat's power. Plus, unlike the canoe, speed can be of the essence, especially when the boat ups and runs with that bubbling sound from underneath it.

    So the rowing machine has rekindled that desire, which is a good thing. And my form, I think, is still pretty good.

    Do any other people here row, or have rowed as an adjunct to their cycling, or just for the fun of it. Competitive rowing doesn't really interest me (because I am inherently lazy with the training side of things), and we do the occasional paddle with our canoe.

    I am interested in type of boat, distances, how much fun it is, any advice on a kayak conversion, and so on. Oh, and how has it meshed with any training on a bike -- has it improved upper body strength and/or endurance, for instance?
    Last edited by Rowan; 12-22-12 at 06:56 PM.
    Dream. Dare. Do.

  2. #2
    Senior Member EastOfMidnight's Avatar
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    I row an Adirondack Guide boat and really love it; I retire to the rowing machine when its cold. I think its a great upper body and thigh compliment to bicycling.
    I am not convinced that a kayak could be effectively modified to row. First, you sit lower in a kayak than in a rowing boat, and second kayaks tend to be a bit directionally unstable without an added keel or skeg. Could be done, I suppose, but the weight and performance penalty might leave you disappointed. I used to build canoes and kayaks for a major company. Nearly all of our hybrid boats were inefficient compromises that ended up being the worst of both worlds.
    Definitely check out the ag sector for work - it's very rewarding.
    My other bike is an Adirondack Guide Boat.

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by EastOfMidnight View Post
    I row an Adirondack Guide boat and really love it; I retire to the rowing machine when its cold. I think its a great upper body and thigh compliment to bicycling.
    I am not convinced that a kayak could be effectively modified to row. First, you sit lower in a kayak than in a rowing boat, and second kayaks tend to be a bit directionally unstable without an added keel or skeg. Could be done, I suppose, but the weight and performance penalty might leave you disappointed. I used to build canoes and kayaks for a major company. Nearly all of our hybrid boats were inefficient compromises that ended up being the worst of both worlds.
    Definitely check out the ag sector for work - it's very rewarding.
    Thanks! The kayak was a freebie pick-up from a local dump, but seems to be in sound condition. Experimenting with it won't be a big deal whether it works or not.

    I worked in orcharding for five years, and before that picked cherries for a season. Doesn't pay brilliantly, but I can go home and forget about work, get a great all-body workout for eight hours, and I am outdoors. It's all good.
    Dream. Dare. Do.

  4. #4
    Senior Member jdon's Avatar
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    More of a paddler for me. I have had several kayaks over the years and built a 16ft stitch and glue sea kayak 3 years ago. Great fun as I use it for exercise and fishing.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by jdon View Post
    More of a paddler for me. I have had several kayaks over the years and built a 16ft stitch and glue sea kayak 3 years ago. Great fun as I use it for exercise and fishing.
    Pictures? I am always interested in the boats that people have built themselves.
    Dream. Dare. Do.

  6. #6
    Senior Member jdon's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rowan View Post
    Pictures? I am always interested in the boats that people have built themselves.
    I will get you some Rowan. My laptop died and am using my daughters MacBook at the moment so have nothing to show. I may be able to pull up some photos of an 8 ft tender I built 15 years ago. Built it for my dad for a retirement gift. I just need to search some cards.. and figure out this Apple product.

  7. #7
    Senior Member jdon's Avatar
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    Here is the tender, even includes a bicycle component..


  8. #8
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    From what I can see, that is nice piece of workmanship.

    The bicycle component is for...?
    Dream. Dare. Do.

  9. #9
    Senior Member jdon's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rowan View Post
    From what I can see, that is nice piece of workmanship.

    The bicycle component is for...?
    The hand trailer.

  10. #10
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    You don't mean Bicycle in Polish?

    Columbia River is too choppy for rowing a small open Boat, now.

    It's not like Punting on the river Cam, or upper Thames..


    Dinghy out to your anchored out live-aboard, is pretty much a Puget Sound Thing..


    the Skirt around your waist, tying you in a Kayak keeps the water out,
    so Eskimo Rolls are possible, for survival.

    without those the thing takes on water too much as soon as it rolls over .
    Last edited by fietsbob; 12-23-12 at 01:32 PM.

  11. #11
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    My wife skulls and loves it. I think it,s 7 person boat.They go out 3 times a week from the Spring - Fall. Myself if I am not on the Bike I am out in my 16 ft Kayak. I enjoy the peace of paddleing.

  12. #12
    Senior Member volosong's Avatar
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    I would sell all my bicycles, (except for one), to have a singles skull. They are just so darn expensive. So instead, I take my kayak out of the harbor in the ocean and have a Concept II rower in the bedroom. Great workout.
    Deut 6:5

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  13. #13
    Senior Member eja_ bottecchia's Avatar
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    I row...indoors with my Water Rower. It isa beautifully made rowing machine. The sound of the "paddles" turning the water inside the tank makes up for a very relaxing workout.
    My current stable:

    1989 SLX Bottecchia (Campy Athena 11s)
    1999 Cannondale F400 mountain bike
    2012 Bianchi Infinito (Campy Record 11s)
    2012 Colnago C59 in PR99 color scheme (Campy Record 11s)

  14. #14
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    Weirdly, cant row hurts my back. Had to sell my ergo. But i can and do paddle all day. Sea kayaks. My town started a rowing club for the masses two years ago,it is really catching on. They are building a boat house this year to get all the boats out of the rain. If my legs are whipped, i paddle. If the water is to rough, i ride.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by volosong View Post
    I would sell all my bicycles, (except for one), to have a singles skull. They are just so darn expensive. So instead, I take my kayak out of the harbor in the ocean and have a Concept II rower in the bedroom. Great workout.
    I looked a long time ago at a fibreglass rowing skull that could handle rougher water. It had a wide open stern so any water taken on board would drain straight out. It was a lot of money, and had to be imported from the United States.

    I don't think I would sell my bikes to get a scull. I am fairly creative when I want to be, and the kayak conversion might be a springboard into building a CF hull to a proper scull design in the future.
    Dream. Dare. Do.

  16. #16
    Junior Member Oldoarsman's Avatar
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    Rowed in high school and college....3+ mile head races in the fall, 2000 meter sprints in the spring....singles, coxed pairs, fours and eights...being 6'5", I was usually positioned in the engine room, either starboard (5) or port (6) in the eights. Loved the coxed pair...long, tough races!

    That was thirty years ago, and I have been using a Concept II, Model B since 1987....purchased a 20' Adirondack wherry to scull as a single or as a double with my wife.

    Loved and still love the sport, but I find that I have more time for riding my Linear recumbent than I do for transporting my boat to the James. It's easier to hop on my wheels and ride out of the garage than it is to transport my boat to the river, then rig and row it.

    So rather than having my rowing help me be a better rider, I find that my riding is helping me to be a better rower when I have the opportunity to be on the water.

    At 53, it's all good!

  17. #17
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    Welcome to 50+ and to BF Oldoarsman, seems you have been rowing most of your life. It is amazing to watch any single or crew, no mater the size, rowing on a scenic river like the James River through Virginia. The timing of the crew members' strokes and the way a craft seems to lift up and glide when everything is clicking is a sight to behold, it mesmerizes me to watch them. Collegiate rowing and the Olympic's races are fun to watch for me, the thought of keeping the stroke rate up to the coxswain's cadence for the length just boggles my mind, oxygen debt and lactic acid build up are not even a start to that pain. Pics of the bike and the boat would be welcome here.

    Bill
    Last edited by qcpmsame; 12-29-12 at 08:17 AM.

  18. #18
    Pedals, Paddles and Poles Daspydyr's Avatar
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    Does paddling count as rowing. I do get out in this wood strip canoe. I made with with the help of a 4 year old daughter. Great memories. It is a bona fide Trout slaying vessel now.
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    I think its disgusting and terrible how people treat Lance Armstrong, especially after winning 7 Tour de France Titles while on drugs!

    I can't even find my bike when I'm on drugs. -Willie N.

  19. #19
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    only row when the motor craps out,,,,,.
    bud

  20. #20
    Senior Member gcottay's Avatar
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    I've spent many happy hours in recreational skulls and in a canoe with a sliding seat rowing rig. It's not only a great time but an excellent opportunity to get additional use from our eyeglass mounted mirrors.

    http://www.glen-l.com/designs/canu-row/slidingseat.html
    George
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  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by gcottay View Post
    I've spent many happy hours in recreational skulls and in a canoe with a sliding seat rowing rig. It's not only a great time but an excellent opportunity to get additional use from our eyeglass mounted mirrors.

    http://www.glen-l.com/designs/canu-row/slidingseat.html
    Thank you! The link has been bookmarked for future reference.
    Dream. Dare. Do.

  22. #22
    Junior Member Oldoarsman's Avatar
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    Bill-

    You seem to understand the finer points of the sport!

    When all the members of a crew are clicking (swinging in perfect unison and driving their legs together) you can feel the shell literally lift out of the water and fly! Additionally, you can hear the crispness when everyone is hitting and moving together.

    One of the aspects of the sport I really enjoy is the fact that there are no superstars...the shell will only go as fast as the slowest member of your team, so it's in everyone's best interest to work together for the overall benefit of the crew.

    When I get a better feel for how to do it properly, I'll post some photos of my bike and wherry, but in the meantime, it's possible to see examples of both at the following links:
    http://www.linearrecumbent.com/index.htm#Linear-Limo
    http://www.adirondackrowing.com/Wherry.html

    The recumbent has been a fantastic machine. Unfortunately, I've gotten to know my orthopedic doctor too well over the past couple of years, and this bike has helped me really enjoy painless cycling again. I'd highly recommend one to anyone with shoulder, knee, back or foot problems.

    Best wishes-

  23. #23
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    Oarsman,
    Glad the 'Bent allows you to cycle and enjoy the riding, for those that need and/or want one nothing else seems to fill the bill. (Cue in Rydabent and Osca now) We have many members that love them for allowing them pain free riding. Rowing, I enjoy watching it and appreciate the team work and effort it takes to row in doubles, 4's or 8's. The Marine Corps treasures the team work effort so I came to like rowing for this, my career friends share this with me. Glad to have you here.

    Rowan, how goes the gym and your rowing?

    Bill

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by qcpmsame View Post
    Rowan, how goes the gym and your rowing?

    Bill
    Really well. I am varying the intensities, of course. Yesterday was an easy paddle combined with walking and spin-cycling, then 22 x 25m laps of the pool. The day before was somewhat more intensive -- more time and dialed up resistance on the pull.

    What I really like about the way I am rowing is... the way I am rowing. The old technique returned quite rapidly. If there is one thing my coach way back then, Ian Sampson, drilled into me/us, it was the style -- and that was not pulling into the stomach.

    I've got the rhythm working really well, and I am concentrating of getting stretch forward before the start of the stroke.

    The only thing I find a bit of a nuisance is the handle. I just can't quite the movement right to emulate feathering of the oar -- the grips need to be designed so they rotate to achieve that.

    What I am liking is that the rowing is a workout for the shoulders and back, and both those are important to me in long-distance cycling, especially the core muscles for support.
    Dream. Dare. Do.

  25. #25
    Senior Member EastOfMidnight's Avatar
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    My other bike is an Adirondack Guide Boat.

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