Enough to make the team?

A member of an indoor rowing team or club? If so, this is the place for you.
Post Reply
k7row
Paddler
Posts: 5
Joined: May 28th, 2018, 10:12 pm

Enough to make the team?

Post by k7row » May 28th, 2018, 10:25 pm

I'm going into my freshman year in high school and have been rowing for about a year and a half. I started erging regularly (every week) about half a year ago, and I'm kind of worried about something.

I'm thinking of trying out for a team that accepts about 45 out of 100 kids who try to get in. From what I understand, they primarily look at erg times for an 1000-meter erging session during tryouts. My times are listed below. I've been practicing a lot, but don't think these times are good enough:

500m split at stroke rate 20 - 2:30
500m split at stroke rate 22 - 2:25
500m split at stroke rate 24 - 2:20

From what I've observed, out of 10 other people trying out, something like 6 or 5 have my time or slower, and 4 or 5 have a faster time.

What are the chances that I'll get on this team?
  • 14 years old
  • 1.79 meters tall
  • 53 kilograms
Image
NOTE: The "5min" and "1k" scores on the chart above are swapped.

Rower for 24 months, coxswain for 1.

Dreadfish
2k Poster
Posts: 369
Joined: December 13th, 2017, 10:58 pm

Re: Enough to make the team?

Post by Dreadfish » May 29th, 2018, 1:42 am

Given that you are about the 50 to 60 % group and they take the top 45% you have some work to do.
You probably want to be doing 2:10.0 or better splits to be reasonably confident to get in.

What's the group?
Erik
55 yo from New Zealand
6'4 and 115kg

Image

Allan Olesen
1k Poster
Posts: 171
Joined: April 27th, 2018, 6:40 am

Re: Enough to make the team?

Post by Allan Olesen » May 29th, 2018, 2:03 am

Not to discourage you, but I actually use your personal best combinations of stroke rate and pace when training at low effort. They are as taken directly out of the Wolverine L4 table for a person with a PB 2k pace of 2:08. It really shouldn't be so, because:

I am 50 years old and in somewhat bad shape. I tried a rowing machine for the first time 7 months ago and didn't start rowing regularly until I got my own a month ago. So if you are a young man who has trained regularly for 6 months, you should be able to do a lot better.

Please think of this as good news: You have options for improving with the correct training.

Unfortunately, I can't give you much training advice. But I think that those who can would want some more information from you:
  • What is your weight? Is it fat or muscle?
  • How high are you?
  • What is the typical length of one of your training sessions? How do you train?
  • You have set some times at a low stroke rate with a quite consistent energy per stroke, somewhere around 5 WattMinutes/stroke. What was the limitation you felt - were you unable to pull harder, unable to pull faster or unable to keep up the pace over longer time?
  • Have you tried setting a time at a higher stroke rate.
  • How close do you come to your max. heartrate (or better: lactate threshold, if you know that one) when you set your personal best times?
  • Have you watched some of the instruction videos of how to do a correct stroke with good drive length and good leg push? Can you make this work for you?

User avatar
jackarabit
Marathon Poster
Posts: 4391
Joined: June 14th, 2014, 9:51 am

Re: Enough to make the team?

Post by jackarabit » May 29th, 2018, 11:57 am

We don’t know your gender, height, weight, sports participation history in middle school, general health. Guesswork except that you have made book on yourself and your immediate competition. But there’re eight in a boat, right?
There are two types of people in this world: Those who can extrapolate from incomplete data

M_71_5'-7"_164lb
Image

Training Log

k7row
Paddler
Posts: 5
Joined: May 28th, 2018, 10:12 pm

Re: Enough to make the team?

Post by k7row » May 29th, 2018, 10:10 pm

Allan Olesen wrote:Not to discourage you, but I actually use your personal best combinations of stroke rate and pace when training at low effort. They are as taken directly out of the Wolverine L4 table for a person with a PB 2k pace of 2:08. It really shouldn't be so, because:

I am 50 years old and in somewhat bad shape. I tried a rowing machine for the first time 7 months ago and didn't start rowing regularly until I got my own a month ago. So if you are a young man who has trained regularly for 6 months, you should be able to do a lot better.

Please think of this as good news: You have options for improving with the correct training.

Unfortunately, I can't give you much training advice. But I think that those who can would want some more information from you:
  • What is your weight? Is it fat or muscle?
  • How high are you?
  • What is the typical length of one of your training sessions? How do you train?
  • You have set some times at a low stroke rate with a quite consistent energy per stroke, somewhere around 5 WattMinutes/stroke. What was the limitation you felt - were you unable to pull harder, unable to pull faster or unable to keep up the pace over longer time?
  • Have you tried setting a time at a higher stroke rate.
  • How close do you come to your max. heartrate (or better: lactate threshold, if you know that one) when you set your personal best times?
  • Have you watched some of the instruction videos of how to do a correct stroke with good drive length and good leg push? Can you make this work for you?
Please note that these aren't my personal bests; they're my averages. All of my personal bests are about 5 seconds faster than these (not great, but still).

As for your questions:
  • I am relatively skinny. I have some pretty good leg muscle, but not too much arm muscle. To be precise, I am 52 kilograms.
  • I am 5'8".
  • By myself on a relaxed day, I'll just do three or four 1000-meter training sessions, maxing out to between 15 minutes to 20 minutes. However, on a more serious day, I'll practice with four or five 1000-meter training sessions. I often train by doing 1k at four or five different stroke rates, usually 18, 20, 22, 24, and 28.
  • I felt as if I wasn't able to pull that pace for that long. I slow down my split by three or four seconds because of that. I think endurance is something that I should definitely look at for improvement. If I had been able to keep that steady split, my 500m split would be around 2:18 or 2:20.
  • At a higher stroke rate, I obviously do better. I'll sometimes push myself to go for 1000m at a 26 or 28, where my split will be significantly faster. However, at the moment, I'd like to train at a slower rate and try to pull more rather than going faster.
  • This question got me thinking, because I don't think my heart rate is nearly as high as it should be when trying to set my personal bests. I can't give an exact heart rate, but it definitely wasn't my max.
  • I have, but probably haven't watched enough of those videos.
Other people had some other questions:
  • Gender: Male
  • Sports participation history: Run 10 minutes consecutively every day, 5 days a week. On the weekends, I erg and bike.
  • 14 years old
  • 1.79 meters tall
  • 53 kilograms
Image
NOTE: The "5min" and "1k" scores on the chart above are swapped.

Rower for 24 months, coxswain for 1.

Allan Olesen
1k Poster
Posts: 171
Joined: April 27th, 2018, 6:40 am

Re: Enough to make the team?

Post by Allan Olesen » May 30th, 2018, 1:00 am

It looks to me as a very low training volume. If I have understood you correctly, you train 1 or 2 times a week, and every session is 15-20 minutes, sometimes a little longer. So that is perhaps 1 hour a week?

If you want endurance, nothing beats training duration. Duration is much more important that intensity. Most of the endurance sports I have seen recommendations for, have had at least 4-6 weekly sessions of 30-150 minutes + warm up.

If you look at the Wolverine plan in this forum, you will see endurance sessions between 40-70 minutes + 2500 meter of warm up, and the typical number of weekly sessions is 5-9 (mixed endurance, speed and weight lifting sessions, but with most of the sessions being endurance).

On the other hand, it sounds as if you are also limited by your strength. If I understood you correctly, you can improve your pace by pulling more strokes, but you can't pull harder per stroke?

The experts will need to chime in here, but I guess you could benefit from some strength training and/or technique training to improve the number of WattMinutes you can pull per stroke. But I don't know the target for a 58 kg person. I pull 5-6 WattMinutes/stroke during long training sessions and 9-10 WattMinutes/stroke at short sessions at very low strokerate - but I am old and heavy and in somewhat bad shape, so that is not so comparable.

(You find the number of WattMinutes/stroke by dividing Watts with the strokerate. So if you pull 110 Watt at 22 SPM, you pull 110/22 = 5 WattMinutes per stroke.)

k7row
Paddler
Posts: 5
Joined: May 28th, 2018, 10:12 pm

Re: Enough to make the team?

Post by k7row » May 30th, 2018, 1:13 am

Allan Olesen wrote:It looks to me as a very low training volume. If I have understood you correctly, you train 1 or 2 times a week, and every session is 15-20 minutes, sometimes a little longer. So that is perhaps 1 hour a week?

If you want endurance, nothing beats training duration. Duration is much more important that intensity. Most of the endurance sports I have seen recommendations for, have had at least 4-6 weekly sessions of 30-150 minutes + warm up.

If you look at the Wolverine plan in this forum, you will see endurance sessions between 40-70 minutes + 2500 meter of warm up, and the typical number of weekly sessions is 5-9 (mixed endurance, speed and weight lifting sessions, but with most of the sessions being endurance).

On the other hand, it sounds as if you are also limited by your strength. If I understood you correctly, you can improve your pace by pulling more strokes, but you can't pull harder per stroke?

The experts will need to chime in here, but I guess you could benefit from some strength training and/or technique training to improve the number of WattMinutes you can pull per stroke. But I don't know the target for a 58 kg person. I pull 5-6 WattMinutes/stroke during long training sessions and 9-10 WattMinutes/stroke at short sessions at very low strokerate - but I am old and heavy and in somewhat bad shape, so that is not so comparable.

(You find the number of WattMinutes/stroke by dividing Watts with the strokerate. So if you pull 110 Watt at 22 SPM, you pull 110/22 = 5 WattMinutes per stroke.)
Alright. Thank you for the advice. Since summertime is here, I'll probably be hitting the erg a lot more often, and will probably start to do four to five erging sessions a week (60 minutes each time). Hopefully it'll improve my 500m split in time for the tryouts! :D
  • 14 years old
  • 1.79 meters tall
  • 53 kilograms
Image
NOTE: The "5min" and "1k" scores on the chart above are swapped.

Rower for 24 months, coxswain for 1.

k7row
Paddler
Posts: 5
Joined: May 28th, 2018, 10:12 pm

Re: Enough to make the team?

Post by k7row » June 13th, 2018, 6:33 pm

Allan Olesen wrote:It looks to me as a very low training volume. If I have understood you correctly, you train 1 or 2 times a week, and every session is 15-20 minutes, sometimes a little longer. So that is perhaps 1 hour a week?

If you want endurance, nothing beats training duration. Duration is much more important that intensity. Most of the endurance sports I have seen recommendations for, have had at least 4-6 weekly sessions of 30-150 minutes + warm up.

If you look at the Wolverine plan in this forum, you will see endurance sessions between 40-70 minutes + 2500 meter of warm up, and the typical number of weekly sessions is 5-9 (mixed endurance, speed and weight lifting sessions, but with most of the sessions being endurance).

On the other hand, it sounds as if you are also limited by your strength. If I understood you correctly, you can improve your pace by pulling more strokes, but you can't pull harder per stroke?

The experts will need to chime in here, but I guess you could benefit from some strength training and/or technique training to improve the number of WattMinutes you can pull per stroke. But I don't know the target for a 58 kg person. I pull 5-6 WattMinutes/stroke during long training sessions and 9-10 WattMinutes/stroke at short sessions at very low strokerate - but I am old and heavy and in somewhat bad shape, so that is not so comparable.

(You find the number of WattMinutes/stroke by dividing Watts with the strokerate. So if you pull 110 Watt at 22 SPM, you pull 110/22 = 5 WattMinutes per stroke.)
Time to update this thread.

So, for the past two weeks, I've been training more and more often. I now train on Mondays, Wednesdays, Fridays and Sundays (leaving one day in between each training day for rest).

So far, it's yielded great results.

At the beginning of June, my average 500m split was around 2:23, but now, I've improved it to 2:16:3. I figure if I keep up the new way I'm training, I'll be able to reach sub-2:10 by early- to mid-july.

You also spoke of watts, which I have also started taking short but very strong and fast strokes on (36 s/m, as hard as I possibly can for :30 to 1:00). It hasn't been going too well, since I usually only pull 250 watts at stroke rate 36. Other than that, it's been going great. Thanks for the advice!

[P.S.: I seem to have lost the specific site that makes the types of charts of times and PBs that I have in my signature. Does anyone have any idea what it is?]
  • 14 years old
  • 1.79 meters tall
  • 53 kilograms
Image
NOTE: The "5min" and "1k" scores on the chart above are swapped.

Rower for 24 months, coxswain for 1.

Dreadfish
2k Poster
Posts: 369
Joined: December 13th, 2017, 10:58 pm

Re: Enough to make the team?

Post by Dreadfish » June 13th, 2018, 9:38 pm

go to the FAQ section and there is a thread for the PR signature. its a little different to what you have currently... its like mine

and keep up the good work... looks like its paying off
Erik
55 yo from New Zealand
6'4 and 115kg

Image

k7row
Paddler
Posts: 5
Joined: May 28th, 2018, 10:12 pm

Re: Enough to make the team?

Post by k7row » June 13th, 2018, 10:58 pm

Oh, great! Didn't notice that one before. However, I did find the original site, and for future reference for anyone who stumbles across this thread, it's called "Free Spirits Rowing".

Thanks for the support! :D
  • 14 years old
  • 1.79 meters tall
  • 53 kilograms
Image
NOTE: The "5min" and "1k" scores on the chart above are swapped.

Rower for 24 months, coxswain for 1.

User avatar
Citroen
SpamTeam
Posts: 5419
Joined: March 16th, 2006, 3:28 pm
Location: Basingstoke, UK

Re: Enough to make the team?

Post by Citroen » June 14th, 2018, 4:00 am

k7row wrote: [P.S.: I seem to have lost the specific site that makes the types of charts of times and PBs that I have in my signature. Does anyone have any idea what it is?]
http://www.c2ctc.com/make_image.php

Post Reply