Pure Pulling Power

By Doug Csima, Kevin Light and Malcolm Howard

In Rowing, Videos

June 11, 2010

Video Article

Just like CrossFit lifters can tell you their 3-rep max for any given movement, top Canadian rowers can tell you their 3-stroke max on a Concept2 erg.

Doug Csima is a member of the Rowing Canada team, and he tried to beat his 3-stroke max at a training session at CrossFit East Sacramento. With teammates bracing the erg to prevent sliding, Csima hauls off in hopes of breaking his personal record of 1,120 watts on the last stroke. Elite rowers shoot for above 1,100 watts as a benchmark, according to Cam Birtwell, strength and conditioning coach at the Canadian Sports Centre Pacific and owner of CrossFit Zone in Victoria, B.C.

Following Csima’s attempts, Olympic gold medalist Kevin Light talks about the team’s on-water training, while fellow gold medalist and rowing beast Malcolm Howard explains what he does in the “engine room” of an eight-man shell.

8min 17sec

Additional reading: Bruce Kocher: Watt Contest by Bruce Kocher, published May 2, 2009.



10 Comments on “Pure Pulling Power”


wrote …

Love these videos!


wrote …

How does this work? Does it measure peak power? Do you get the flywheel spinning to ideal speed and then hit it as hard as you can on the third stroke?


replied to comment from Duncan Beattie

Yes, it measures peak power for the third stroke. The screen will show your power for all three strokes, but the third stroke is what is used to determine your three stroke max. The flywheel is stopped dead at the start.


wrote …

How 'bout the dude cranking out a back lever in the background? Only in Crossfit.


wrote …



wrote …

Very interesting video. Cool guys. Thank you!


wrote …

love these videos on the canadian erg, but seriously two different athletes, same man fights bear t shirt, what do i have to pull to get mine?!


wrote …

Hope he washed that shirt since the last video.


Justin Riley wrote …

What up Canada! It's a pleasure hosting you guys. Looking forward to the next time.


wrote …

Congrats on the men's eights Olympic silver medal guys!

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