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Posted: May 10, 2018

Learn to Row Coach Clinic held

Recently Rockies Rowing Club hosted a Learn to Row (LTR) Coach Clinic with funds provided by Rowing Canada Coach Development program.

Martin teaching rigging at the Lake.

Eight members from three rowing clubs in the Kootenays took advantage of this opportunity to build their coaching base, which in turn will help their clubs and ultimately help the sport of rowing grow in Nelson, Invermere and Cranbrook.

It is the first time in many years that the coaching course has been offered in this region.

Rowing BC provided the Coach Developer instructor Martin George, who is also the para-coach for our province. Martin walked us through the various components of becoming a Learn to Row instructor: from safety and emergency action planning, the language we use and how to instruct someone, using a rowing ergometer, to learn the sequence of the rowing stroke.

Thanks to Ally Blake, a member of Rockies Rowing Club, for the use of her personal rowing ergometer and to Flaman Fitness for the use of one of their show room rowing ergometers, which helped in our learning process.

On Sunday we started the day by role playing the different types of coaches there can be out there: overly positive, subdued but negative, the metaphor coach and the talk-a-lot-coach.

Jennifer and Kristen with Emily on the Erg.

There is pause for thought about how a coach might approach teaching those that want to learn. Be positive but not to a fault, be constructive in evaluation, use the appropriate metaphor but don’t make a habit of filling a lesson with metaphors and keep words in check using only those that are most necessary to get the message across.

We had a picnic lunch at Jimsmith Lake provided by The Heidout and moved on to boat rigging. Some of the things learned here: how to move the foot stretchers so the rower has enough room to get their hands down and away at the end of the stroke, making sure that the riggers are the correct distance apart and the oars have the correct inboard to make the rowing experience enjoyable for the new rower.

At the end of the clinic we ended up with eight trained LTR coaches. The trained coaches can teach Learn to Row but there is another step to become certified under the Rowing Canada and Coaching Association of Canada Coach Development Program and that is to do a lesson plan and to be evaluated.

If you are interested in learning to row and you live in Nelson (Nelson Rowing Club) and area, Invermere (Lake Windermere Rowing Club) and area or Cranbrook (Rockies Rowing Club) and area, you will find contact information for your local rowing club on the Rowing BC website.

Lead image: These individuals from three Kootenay rowing clubs are ready to teach you to learn to row: James, Ally, Melanie, Robin, Roberta, Kristen, Emily and Jennifer. Photos submitted

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