Concept2 master trainer Angela Hart provides tips for improving your rowing efficiency. The force-curve display in the rower’s monitor is one way to evaluate the power and efficiency of your rowing stroke.
“You want it to be smooth,” Hart says. “But don’t be, you know, too hung up on the actual shape of your force curve.”
Hart analyzes common force-curve shapes. For example, a divot in the front half of the force curve shows a lack of hip extension and flexion.
“Pay more attention to what’s happening with the hips,” she suggests as a fix. “You want to keep the chest up, you want to maintain the curvature of your back and you want to get all that length from the hip joint, not collapsing through the thoracic spine.”
A divot in the second half of the stroke shows “a disconnect in the kinesthetic chain somewhere between hip extension and that final drive of the arms,” Hart says. It is usually indicative of thoracic flexion, showing a weakness in the back and a loss of midline stability.
The ideal curve is peaked like a hill.
“It should show a strong application of power with the leg drive (and) a continuation of the power application through your very powerful hip extension, and the stroke needs to continue and be carried through with a strong drawing in of the arms,” Hart says.
Additional reading: Indoor Rowing: Damper Settings & Intensity by Peter Dreissigacker, published April 1, 2007.