Why am I rating high (35) but going slow?

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Why am I rating high (35) but going slow?

Postby jamesg » August 24th, 2006, 6:37 am

Because your stroke is short.

Power to the flywheel in Watts is the product of handle Force kg x net stroke Length in metres x Rating/6.

As we lose about 20-30 cm in catching up with the flywheel at the catch, and as we have to work to invert the direction of body motion, pulling short and fast is heavily penalised.

So pull long and slow; don't worry how hard you pull, it doesn't really matter, and in any case your youthful enthusiasm will make you sweat.
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Re: Why am I rating high (35) but going slow?

Postby johnlvs2run » August 24th, 2006, 11:31 am

jamesg wrote:Because your stroke is short.

So if you go from 35 spm to 20 spm and use the same length of stroke, you'll be slower.

Power to the flywheel in Watts is the product of handle Force kg x net stroke Length in metres x Rating/6.

Can you give some examples of this.

As we lose about 20-30 cm in catching up with the flywheel at the catch, and as we have to work to invert the direction of body motion, pulling short and fast is heavily penalised.

I agree, whether you drive short and fast at higher stroke rates or at low ones.

So pull long and slow

Yes but better to drive long and slow at 35 spm than at 20.

don't worry how hard you pull, it doesn't really matter

Agreed.

and in any case your youthful enthusiasm will make you sweat.

Good point. :wink:
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Postby johnlvs2run » August 24th, 2006, 11:36 am

Additionally there is a limit to how long the drive can be.

As the drive can be too short, it can also be too long.

There is a rather optimum drive length in between.

For example, the legs are only a certain length. How are you going to extend them farther than they go? It is possible to gain more length by contorting the body far out of position, but that would take much MORE time - and much SLOWER ratings - than keeping the body in an OPTIMAL position at all times.

It would not only take more time for the drive, and recover, but also much MORE time for the transitions at each end - as compared to having a long relaxed drive at optimum length and reasonably high ratings.

Having too long and too hard of a drive, would cause the transitions at each end to take longer, slower stroke rates, and slower time on the monitor.
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Postby jamesg » August 28th, 2006, 6:49 am

It's usually beginnners who say they pace 2:30 at rate 35, and they cannot be anywhere near overreaching. I've seen this often in hotel gyms; the handle moves about 6 inches.

Some examples of F x R x L.

If F=50kg, L=1.2m, R=20, we are producing 200W.

If F = 40, L= 1.1, R=20: 150W.

I think the best net stroke length can be related to height: around 65%. Any longer as you say will be inefficient and probably risky. By net I mean net of the slack distance that has to be taken up before the freewheel engages. I've tried to measure this, and it's not easy as the actual catch point is somewhere in mid air.

The ideal handle force for me is between ½ my current weight 85kg and 60% of my BMI=23 "ideal" weight 81kg (I'm 188cm).

These numbers obviously apply to what I can do in terms of Watts in longish pieces (>20'); it would be interesting to see if and how they relate to others. Younger people clearly pull much harder.
77y, 188cm, 85kg, MHR 160. Last 2k (May 1018) 8.37@23
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Postby johnlvs2run » August 28th, 2006, 12:36 pm

I tried to take a 6 inch stroke this morning, and found it to be quite impossible. Even when not moving my body at all, only using my hands and arms, the handle moves much farther than 6 inches. Thus perhaps the people you saw were rowing with a stroke that was only 50 to 75 percent of an optimal length for their size.

On the other hand I tested your theory this morning, that a 2:30 pace means the stroke length is short. I have a plastic tie sticking up around 12 inches in front of the top of the foot plates, denoting a reach for the optimum length of my stroke. and aimed for this while upping my stroke rate at a 2:24 pace. I was able to reach this easily and comfortably with full length of my stroke, at 30 spm.

Thus having a full stroke -- and the rating -- are not synonymous.

Then I tried 35 spm, keeping the same pace, and achieved this by putting more focus on recovery, transitions, and total relaxation of the drive. I was able to row at 35 spm at 2:24 pace, consistently and relaxed, with a full stroke, even fuller than I used for my 500 meter PB, which was at a much greater meters per stroke.
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Postby johnlvs2run » August 28th, 2006, 12:41 pm

jamesg wrote:Some examples of F x R x L.

If F=50kg, L=1.2m, R=20, we are producing 200W.

If F = 40, L= 1.1, R=20: 150W.

What watts do you get at 30 spm and 2:24 pace, are they any different than if you do the 2:24 pace at 15 spm?

I think the best net stroke length can be related to height: around 65%.

Yes I agree it would be interesting to correlate this to height, also more specifically to height, along with length of the torso and arms. Also it would be interesting to see the range of stroke length of the top lightweights in their World Record rows, though that info is likely not available.

The ideal handle force for me is between ½ my current weight 85kg and 60% of my BMI=23 "ideal" weight 81kg (I'm 188cm).

What is this, and how do you know it is optimal?

What if you lightened the force, kept the same stroke length, and upped the rating? What would the result be then?
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Postby johnlvs2run » August 28th, 2006, 12:50 pm

jamesg wrote:I think the best net stroke length can be related to height: around 65%.

My stroke length is right around 45 inches, the same 65% of my height.

I am surprised though, that yours is also at 65 percent, as thought you were reaching through to the cage, or is that just for training.
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Postby LJWagner » August 30th, 2006, 12:14 am

Stroke length/handle travel depends on:

leg length
arm length to curve of the fingers
torso length
back curve (forward) at the catch and at the finish (if different)
change in body angle from catch to finish.

Just measure the distance the handle travels from your catch position to where it reverses near your body. Mark the spots on a wall and measure it. For me, that is about 48 inches, 66.6% of height. That is with vertical shins. Depending how far I go past vertical shins, and lean, I can hit the pm chain guard on my model A C2, getting another 8 inches.

Thinking optimum length is some set percentage of height is silly. It will be in the 60-70 % range for most. A little less back, I am at 63% of height. A touch more back, and longer slide forward, and I am at 72% or more.

Average force applied will depend on your maintainable strength, predominantly in bench row and squats/leg press for the duration of a row. With knees more bent, you have less strength (duh) than when nearly fully extended, which explains partly why you can't have a square force curve.

Increase your low back strength and bench row strength, then your arm speed will improve and you will make more watts.
Do your warm-ups, and cooldown, its not for you, its for your heart ! Live long, and row forever !
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Postby LJWagner » August 30th, 2006, 12:17 am

Rate high and go slow ?

Some combination of low power and probably a short stroke/handle movement.
Do your warm-ups, and cooldown, its not for you, its for your heart ! Live long, and row forever !
( C2 model A 1986 )
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Postby johnlvs2run » August 30th, 2006, 1:23 am

LJWagner wrote:I am at 63% of height. A touch more back, and longer slide forward, and I am at 72% or more.

Wow that's very inconsistent.

What pace?
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Postby LJWagner » September 1st, 2006, 5:19 pm

John:
I was providing examples of how a slightly different reach or different layback affect the percent of ht figure for stroke length.
Do your warm-ups, and cooldown, its not for you, its for your heart ! Live long, and row forever !
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