Newbie - How do I find my stroke length?

General discussion on Training. How to get better on your erg, how to use your erg to get better at another sport, or anything else about improving your abilities.
Dangerscouse
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Re: Newbie - How do I find my stroke length?

Post by Dangerscouse » May 11th, 2019, 7:15 am

Interestingly as my knees have been dodgy recently my first session showed a smaller drive length 1:32ish as I wasn't compressing my knees as much.

I also noticed that my length is shorter when I pull to the bottom of my rib cage (which i usually do) than when i pull to my upper chest, as this gave a length of 1:52 compared to 1:45
46 HWT; 6' 4"; Liverpool 1k= 3:09; 2k= 6:36; 5k= 17:27; 6k= 21:23; 10k= 36:21 30mins= 8,356m 60mins= 16,317m HM= 1:18:40; FM= 2:49:39; 50k= 3:28:18; 100k= 7:52:44; 12hrs = 153km

"You reap what you Row"

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mitchel674
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Re: Newbie - How do I find my stroke length?

Post by mitchel674 » May 12th, 2019, 2:37 pm

mdpfirrman wrote:
May 10th, 2019, 11:26 am
mitchel674 wrote:
May 9th, 2019, 2:29 pm
I've been looking at my drive length in real time using erg data along with the force curve on the PM for the past 2 months. This combo has really helped me keep my stroke in good form. I still tend to deteriorate when I fatigue or rate up. By watching my drive length I can alert myself when I am getting sloppy. My current ideal drive length seems to be 1.28m.
I watch both this and my "Drive Time". Drive time is a great thing to watch because it shows you (along with Drive Length) your Velocity. It took me a long time to realize with rowing that the old physics equation works. Power = Velocity X Force. Every new rower remembers the force part but forgets all about Velocity (so does every bulky guy in the gym that sets the Damper to 10!!). Velocity training is getting big in many sports now. There's even a weight lifting device that gauges how fast you move the bar on lifts. When you reach a certain point of decreasing velocity, it tells you to stop lifting that weight and be done with that set. That lifting device (an Italian company) costs like $300 USD. It's fantastic to have access to Velocity information free courtesy of ErgData.

My force is pretty weak right now recovering from the back injury, but I'm able to still concentrate on making the drive snappy by keeping my Drive Time at .7 secs or under (assuming your drive length is relatively constant). Also gives me something to do while my paces are pathetic while I recover.
Thanks for the tip, Mike. I will have to start checking my drive time. This may be a more important factor for me than drive length.
55yo male, 6ft, 162lbs

Numbnuts
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Re: Newbie - How do I find my stroke length?

Post by Numbnuts » May 14th, 2019, 4:56 pm

Great info, cheers all. Sorry hadn't realized my post had been approved so didn't see the replies until I happened to log back on just now.

So far I've done about 5 sessions in the last two weeks, slowly building up. Did my first 20 minute session last night working on my glutes just now. They get very sore at about 8 minutes, so will build my time up slowly until they strengthen a bit.

I'll spend the time looking at form and go back through this thread tonight when I'm on the erg so it makes more sense to me.

Had no idea there was so much involved in indoor rowing, quite fascinating. Glad I found this forum before i pulled the pin on a machine, I almost went for a Water Rower but it was the size of his forum that swayed my in the end, I figured an active user base this big must say something about the machine.

Thanks.

Dangerscouse
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Re: Newbie - How do I find my stroke length?

Post by Dangerscouse » May 15th, 2019, 12:58 am

Numbnuts wrote:
May 14th, 2019, 4:56 pm
Great info, cheers all. Sorry hadn't realized my post had been approved so didn't see the replies until I happened to log back on just now.

So far I've done about 5 sessions in the last two weeks, slowly building up. Did my first 20 minute session last night working on my glutes just now. They get very sore at about 8 minutes, so will build my time up slowly until they strengthen a bit.

I'll spend the time looking at form and go back through this thread tonight when I'm on the erg so it makes more sense to me.

Had no idea there was so much involved in indoor rowing, quite fascinating. Glad I found this forum before i pulled the pin on a machine, I almost went for a Water Rower but it was the size of his forum that swayed my in the end, I figured an active user base this big must say something about the machine.

Thanks.
For a seemingly simple exercise it's actually fairly technically difficult to get it right. So many hidden pitfalls where you can leak power and efficiency

Water rowers look good, but that is all that they are good for
46 HWT; 6' 4"; Liverpool 1k= 3:09; 2k= 6:36; 5k= 17:27; 6k= 21:23; 10k= 36:21 30mins= 8,356m 60mins= 16,317m HM= 1:18:40; FM= 2:49:39; 50k= 3:28:18; 100k= 7:52:44; 12hrs = 153km

"You reap what you Row"

Instagram: stuwenman

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Re: Newbie - How do I find my stroke length?

Post by Numbnuts » May 15th, 2019, 4:24 pm

@Dangerscouse it's quite fascinating. Trying to work on technique, did another 20 minutes last night, dropped stroke rate down from around 27/28 to 20/22, lower heart rate, less perceived effort but pace went up and I rowed further than the 20 minutes the night before but easier.

I'm 6'1 but must have short legs, if I start the drive without leaning way over the front of my shins and finish with a good lean back and bar at my rib cage my stroke length is 1.15-1.2. Best I can get my stroke length to is 1.33 but that's with me leaning way too far forward at the catch and the handle pretty much being hard up against the chain guide plus a massive lean back at the end.

It's probably technique, but the actual catch doesn't seem to occur until 2-3 inches after I start pulling back, are all machines like that? It's like the very start if the drive has no resistance then suddenly bites once you're already moving back wards.

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Re: Newbie - How do I find my stroke length?

Post by Allan Olesen » May 15th, 2019, 4:55 pm

Numbnuts wrote:
May 15th, 2019, 4:24 pm

It's probably technique, but the actual catch doesn't seem to occur until 2-3 inches after I start pulling back, are all machines like that? It's like the very start if the drive has no resistance then suddenly bites once you're already moving back wards.
It is not the machine. It is you. (And it is perfectly normal).

The flywheel is still spinning. You need to accelerate the handle/chain so it catches up with the velocity of the flywheel. Until then you will not feel any resistance.

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Re: Newbie - How do I find my stroke length?

Post by Numbnuts » May 15th, 2019, 5:00 pm

That makes perfect sense now @Allen, thanks. That explains why, at a much slower stroke rate, it catches earlier.

I've a lot of work to do on my technique!

Cheers.

Dangerscouse
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Re: Newbie - How do I find my stroke length?

Post by Dangerscouse » May 16th, 2019, 2:47 am

Numbnuts wrote:
May 15th, 2019, 4:24 pm
@Dangerscouse it's quite fascinating. Trying to work on technique, did another 20 minutes last night, dropped stroke rate down from around 27/28 to 20/22, lower heart rate, less perceived effort but pace went up and I rowed further than the 20 minutes the night before but easier.
This usually means that you have got power but not the base fitness, which is common. Lots of long steady state sessions will help that.
46 HWT; 6' 4"; Liverpool 1k= 3:09; 2k= 6:36; 5k= 17:27; 6k= 21:23; 10k= 36:21 30mins= 8,356m 60mins= 16,317m HM= 1:18:40; FM= 2:49:39; 50k= 3:28:18; 100k= 7:52:44; 12hrs = 153km

"You reap what you Row"

Instagram: stuwenman

Numbnuts
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Re: Newbie - How do I find my stroke length?

Post by Numbnuts » May 16th, 2019, 3:05 am

Great, thanks Dangerscouse, long and steady is exactly why I bought it. I've been running a lot the last couple of years, did my first ultra last November and picked up a few injuries the last few months that's keeping my distance down. I figured the rower would help me maintain (and hopefully improve) the base fitness so I don't lose too much until I can get my weekly k's up again.

Plus, it's coming into winter down under so the rower is a good addition to the treadmill to help the boredom factor, mix it up a bit, Should make me a bit more well rounded too seeing as the running is only really working the lower body.

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Re: Newbie - How do I find my stroke length?

Post by hjs » May 16th, 2019, 4:04 am

Numbnuts wrote:
May 15th, 2019, 5:00 pm
That makes perfect sense now @Allen, thanks. That explains why, at a much slower stroke rate, it catches earlier.

I've a lot of work to do on my technique!

Cheers.
And also why high drag is easier, fan spins at low speed, so not difficult to catch it and lots of time to pull.
For my training see twitter @Hjsrowing

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Re: Newbie - How do I find my stroke length?

Post by Numbnuts » May 16th, 2019, 5:50 pm

I've set the drag to 120'ish based on a few Youtube vids I'd seen which have said for men 120-125 and women 110-115.

Dangerscouse
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Re: Newbie - How do I find my stroke length?

Post by Dangerscouse » May 17th, 2019, 12:49 am

Numbnuts wrote:
May 16th, 2019, 5:50 pm
I've set the drag to 120'ish based on a few Youtube vids I'd seen which have said for men 120-125 and women 110-115.
Have a play around with drag. You might prefer it higher or lower as it's very subjective
46 HWT; 6' 4"; Liverpool 1k= 3:09; 2k= 6:36; 5k= 17:27; 6k= 21:23; 10k= 36:21 30mins= 8,356m 60mins= 16,317m HM= 1:18:40; FM= 2:49:39; 50k= 3:28:18; 100k= 7:52:44; 12hrs = 153km

"You reap what you Row"

Instagram: stuwenman

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