Rowing strapless...

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Ollie Russell
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Rowing strapless...

Post by Ollie Russell » June 12th, 2019, 11:49 am

Every once in a while i spend 15-20minutes at the end of a session doing some drills i picked up online. Either rowing with no arms, no legs or strapless...or i just row at a low rate and slow everthing down and concentrate on ultra-strict form/technique.

My question, when i row strapless i have no leanback. How normal is this? I feel very unstable and to leanback feels unnatural, should i be able to leanback? Im concerned this is a core or flexibility issue. I understand rowing strapless is a drill to correct pulling on the straps with feet and to fix excessive leanback...so i aussumed no leanback was kind of the point, or is this a flaw in my technique?
Rowing since December 2018
31yrs
6ft 1inch
260lb

2k 6:48:9
10k 38:49
60min 15,324

Goals for 2019: a 6:30 2k, 37:00 10k and would like to try a marathon.

Dino
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Re: Rowing strapless...

Post by Dino » June 12th, 2019, 12:26 pm

I normally warm up strapless. You should still be able to get to 11 o'clock. I really concentrate on sitting tall, being strong in the core and having quick hands at the release when strapless.
Although you can do drills with no hip swing if you want to :)
51 HWT M - age group verified percentiles based on 2019 season, long term target to get above 75% for all (although maybe not the FM!)
500m (63rd), 1k (64th), 2k (73rd), 5k (83rd), 30m (84th), 10k (82nd), 60m (76th), HM (85th), FM (72nd)

Ollie Russell
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Re: Rowing strapless...

Post by Ollie Russell » June 12th, 2019, 12:50 pm

Dino wrote:
June 12th, 2019, 12:26 pm
I normally warm up strapless. You should still be able to get to 11 o'clock. I really concentrate on sitting tall, being strong in the core and having quick hands at the release when strapless.
Although you can do drills with no hip swing if you want to :)
Thanks dino, tommorows session i'll try again. Possibly when im rowing normally im using the strap to support the lean back...would explain why it feels so unnatural when i row strapless. Maybe im overthinking a little too! I bet making myself row 15k strapless would soon correct it lol.
Rowing since December 2018
31yrs
6ft 1inch
260lb

2k 6:48:9
10k 38:49
60min 15,324

Goals for 2019: a 6:30 2k, 37:00 10k and would like to try a marathon.

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hjs
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Re: Rowing strapless...

Post by hjs » June 12th, 2019, 1:03 pm

Ollie Russell wrote:
June 12th, 2019, 11:49 am
Every once in a while i spend 15-20minutes at the end of a session doing some drills i picked up online. Either rowing with no arms, no legs or strapless...or i just row at a low rate and slow everthing down and concentrate on ultra-strict form/technique.

My question, when i row strapless i have no leanback. How normal is this? I feel very unstable and to leanback feels unnatural, should i be able to leanback? Im concerned this is a core or flexibility issue. I understand rowing strapless is a drill to correct pulling on the straps with feet and to fix excessive leanback...so i aussumed no leanback was kind of the point, or is this a flaw in my technique?
Layback is limited, but you should be able to row pretty normal. Really rating up is not possible though, same as fast sprinting, for that the feet need to be ankered.
For my training see twitter @Hjsrowing

Allan Olesen
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Re: Rowing strapless...

Post by Allan Olesen » June 12th, 2019, 1:20 pm

If you can't lean back, it may be because your stroke suffers from the errors, which the strapless rowing is supposed to correct!

My guess is that you don't pull hard/late enough with your arms. Instead of fixing this by pulling harder and later - which is what strapless rowing is supposed to teach you - you have tried to fix it by reducing your backward momentum, so your weak attempt with your arms remains adequate.This is not what strapless rowing is supposed to teach you.

(Wow. I sound like an expert. I really have no clue. Perhaps you should post a video, so the real expert can give some qualified feedback.)

Dangerscouse
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Re: Rowing strapless...

Post by Dangerscouse » June 12th, 2019, 1:36 pm

The lay back isn't as pronounced but still is still there. I don't have a massive lay back anyway so it's not an issue for me.

Having a strong core will defo help as you need to hold yourself fairly rigid and transfer the power through your legs and core.

It takes a bit of getting used to but it's like riding a bike. I can now get a lot more pace than when I first started, but the rate remains under r22 any more and you're compromising your ability to get back up the rail for the next stroke
45 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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jamesg
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Re: Rowing strapless...

Post by jamesg » June 12th, 2019, 1:54 pm

My question, when i row strapless i have no leanback.
That's what that drill is for. If you lean back too far you have to pick yourself up again, so it's expensive. Long leanback is used in fixed seat rowing to get a long stroke, and was used a hundred years ago on slides too. Modern blades are more efficient, so not today, see any video of Olympic racing.

As well as avoiding excess leanback, the purpose of strapless is to learn to finish the stroke with the arms and shoulders, cancelling our momentum, putting that amount of energy into the handle and not needing to haul ourselves forward with the feet: the chain tension is almost sufficient at least at low ratings. You can try it on the erg, not afloat.

Most of the work in the stroke is done just after the catch: legs and hips with their real muscle can act there most effectively. If we do that and hard, we won't have much left to put into the finish anyway, so why bother. Better get on with the next stroke, albeit with no hurry.
78y, 188cm, 87kg, MHR 155. Last 2k (24 May 19) 8.46.6@22

KeithT
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Re: Rowing strapless...

Post by KeithT » June 12th, 2019, 2:10 pm

Glad this question was asked. I rarely row strapless and when I do I really have to concentrate on what I am doing to avoid feet "floating" at the finish. I don't really feel I have excessive lay back or pull with feet during recovery but obviously I must be a little off on form. Its a good practice I should do more.
51 yo, 6'3" 205#
PBs (all since turning 50):
1 min - 373m, 500m - 1:23.2, 1K - 2:59.8, 4 min - 1265m, 2K - 6:29.9, 5K - 17:27, 30 min - 8277m, 10K - 36:30, 60 min - 16036, HM - 1:20:22

Ollie Russell
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Re: Rowing strapless...

Post by Ollie Russell » June 12th, 2019, 2:28 pm

KeithT wrote:
June 12th, 2019, 2:10 pm
Glad this question was asked. I rarely row strapless and when I do I really have to concentrate on what I am doing to avoid feet "floating" at the finish. I don't really feel I have excessive lay back or pull with feet during recovery but obviously I must be a little off on form. Its a good practice I should do more.
Thats pretty much how i feel about it keith, im fairly happy with my form (i appreciate im still new to rowing, so take that for what its worth!) The balls of my feet dont leave the foot plate, so i cant be using the straps. My lay back looks fine when i have used an erg close to a window and looked at my reflection. Perhaps it a mental block of not being anchored in and feeling unsecured? Maybe. Perhaps i should really focus on it and really structure it into my regular workout, rather than chucking it in at the end for 5 min.

Thanks for all the comments, lots of food for thought!
Rowing since December 2018
31yrs
6ft 1inch
260lb

2k 6:48:9
10k 38:49
60min 15,324

Goals for 2019: a 6:30 2k, 37:00 10k and would like to try a marathon.

Ollie Russell
500m Poster
Posts: 58
Joined: May 29th, 2019, 5:17 am

Re: Rowing strapless...

Post by Ollie Russell » June 12th, 2019, 2:35 pm

Perhaps the only answer is to post a video of my normal stroke, rowing how i typically row. Feel a bit daft/silly asking some random guy in the gym to film me!
Rowing since December 2018
31yrs
6ft 1inch
260lb

2k 6:48:9
10k 38:49
60min 15,324

Goals for 2019: a 6:30 2k, 37:00 10k and would like to try a marathon.

Dangerscouse
Half Marathon Poster
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Location: Liverpool, England

Re: Rowing strapless...

Post by Dangerscouse » June 12th, 2019, 6:15 pm

Ollie Russell wrote:
June 12th, 2019, 2:28 pm
KeithT wrote:
June 12th, 2019, 2:10 pm
Glad this question was asked. I rarely row strapless and when I do I really have to concentrate on what I am doing to avoid feet "floating" at the finish. I don't really feel I have excessive lay back or pull with feet during recovery but obviously I must be a little off on form. Its a good practice I should do more.
Thats pretty much how i feel about it keith, im fairly happy with my form (i appreciate im still new to rowing, so take that for what its worth!) The balls of my feet dont leave the foot plate, so i cant be using the straps. My lay back looks fine when i have used an erg close to a window and looked at my reflection. Perhaps it a mental block of not being anchored in and feeling unsecured? Maybe. Perhaps i should really focus on it and really structure it into my regular workout, rather than chucking it in at the end for 5 min.

Thanks for all the comments, lots of food for thought!
You need to do it for longer than five mins. It will always feel unnatural if you only do that amount and it takes me 2-3 minutes to get used to it every time I try it.

Always remind yourself, if it doesn't feel natural or easy then there's all the more reason to master it. Avoiding the harder challenges / sessions is never a good idea and you need to wrestle with your weaknesses before they become bigger and harder to control.
45 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

ccooper
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Re: Rowing strapless...

Post by ccooper » June 12th, 2019, 11:35 pm

I frequently row strapless, not just in warmups. Pretty much any workout under 27spm is a candidate. To me it feels perfectly natural, but I don't have much leanback in my stroke anyway. Of course, many might say that mine is not a stroke to emulate, so if you're comfortable with more lean, don't listen to me.
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Chris Cooper M65-69 Hwt 2km world record 6:39.5 in 2017

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Carl Watts
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Re: Rowing strapless...

Post by Carl Watts » June 13th, 2019, 12:54 am

Really don't know why people bother to row strapless, never felt the need to do it personally and even with my ratings down at 20spm or less for training rows I still strap in. Also if something lets go in the drive your going to end up flying off the back of the rower. More important things to focus on if you ask me. No chance of sprinting without straps, like it or not your using them to pull yourself back on the recovery.
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Ombrax
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Re: Rowing strapless...

Post by Ombrax » June 13th, 2019, 1:54 am

I'm definitely in the strapless camp.

I figure if it encourages good technique and more efficient rowing, that's good. Plus, I find that it doesn't hold me back in my final 200-500m sprints, so IMO there's reason not to go strapless. If I were a racer, or if I were doing 2k tests on a frequent basis, then maybe I'd consider it, but I'm not, so I don't use them, and that feels perfectly normal to me.

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hjs
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Re: Rowing strapless...

Post by hjs » June 13th, 2019, 3:01 am

Ombrax wrote:
June 13th, 2019, 1:54 am
I'm definitely in the strapless camp.

I figure if it encourages good technique and more efficient rowing, that's good. Plus, I find that it doesn't hold me back in my final 200-500m sprints, so IMO there's reason not to go strapless. If I were a racer, or if I were doing 2k tests on a frequent basis, then maybe I'd consider it, but I'm not, so I don't use them, and that feels perfectly normal to me.
I row 90% strapless, anything longer and anything non speed. Paces are almost identical to strapped, that said, for faster work and racing straps are 100% needed. The stroke is different and although strapless I can speed up, its not a natural speed up, but a forced one, overly using the arm pull.
I think you should be able to row without, there is really close to zero change if flying of the rail, for that the machine needs to break down, and no you do not need the straps to pull you back, that comes in play beyond rate 25 orso.
For my training see twitter @Hjsrowing

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