Rowing offers the perfect all round exercise with minimal impact. Rowing is suitable for anyone looking for a fitness programme or an athlete looking for cross training. It is said that rowing is the finest art there is - being a symphony of motion. Rowing may be tough with sweat and tears - but it is also meditation. It has a smooth, rhythmic motion that makes rowing a low impact health sport, having no weight bearing, therefore low injury risk. The mental side of things is an extremely important aspect of rowing. Who would want to be in a gym when you could imagine being out on the Ben Chifley Dam with the sun coming up, hearing the sound of splash coming from the oars. Casual rowing helps you unwind the ease of stress as you focus on getting the stroke and rhythm right. It allows you to connect with nature in a way many other sports don't. For the serious rower, rowing encourages mental toughness, discipline and focus.
We train at Chifley Dam, Bathurst, NSW which is about a 20 drive from the CBD of Bathurst. Most training is on a Saturday morning at 8am but sessions can vary depending on regatta training and when coaches are available.
Rowing exercises all major muscle groups; legs, arms, back, abdominal and buttocks, with legs providing most of the power of the rowing stroke with your upper body and arms helping also. It exercises muscles through a wider range of motion than most other exercises and is one of the few aerobic activities that can actually strengthen your back. It gives the cardiovascular system a workout and is also a great calorie burner. Rowing is a unique, lifelong sport, able to be enjoyed by people of all ages, from kids to grandparents. Rowing is time efficient - it doesn't take long to get a great workout and is a complete exercise; satisfying and enjoyable to do.
It takes time and commitment to row with the correct technique. A major challenge is finding the right timing. For a beginner, the main danger is "catching a crab". That is, not getting the blade out of the water in time, which can act as an emergency brake, ejecting you from your seat. Rowing is more about legs than arms - you only pull once your legs have done all the pushing, if your arms hurt, then you are doing it wrong. The basic move seems simple, but turning the blade so that it skims along the water on the "recovery" stroke is much harder than it looks.
While the rowing machine may be a good place to start, it isn't as good as the real thing. Rowing is fun because it is unlike the rowing machine. The machine concentrates your mind on how hard the effort is feeling. Real rowing is all about the feeling of the boat underneath you and the peaceful ideal setting at the dam. Having long legs and long arms helps. That gives long strokes, which means more efficiency - if there are two boats and you are doing less strokes, but at the same speed, then you are always going to win. If you're an amateur, it does not matter. Rowing in Bathurst is accessible to the average person and our club fees are generally less than many sporting clubs.
The club will provide you to an introduction to a low-impact, healthy lifetime sport using the magical setting of our ‘hidden little gem’, the Chifley Dam. Club boats are a mix of singles, doubles and quads. Learners can go in a quad which limits the fear of capsizing or a single scull with 'floaties' which make it more stable. Coaches follow the rowers in a safety tinny powerboat.
Suitable clothing includes shorts, T-shirt, hat and sunscreen. We strongly recommend you bring a towel and change of clothes - just in case. Our club welcomes anyone over 12 years of age that may be interested in taking up rowing - people who have rowed before through to those who have never even seen a rowing boat are invited to participate. Men and women, even people in their 60s and 70s enjoy the sport of rowing. It said that rowing can provide all the outcomes available at a comprehensive gym, all set in a wonderful environment, with the social side thrown in. Joining a rowing club is a great way to meet new people and most rowing clubs have people from all ages, interests and backgrounds. There are so many ways to get involved; competition, fun, coaching, coxing or volunteering.
The club recommends high visibility caps and clothing be worn for training on the dam to make our rowers more visible to other dam users.