The CF Regatta at CrossFit Tuusula was organized for the 1st time ever on Saturday March 4th, but was so much fun that we’re planning to make this Mixed Team Indoor Rowing Race on Slides annually recurring. Read below for a full event report!
Why did we organize specifically a team race on slides? An Ergo on slides feels closer to rowing on water and connecting many of them together mimics having a crew row the same boat. Connecting Ergos via slides force the rowers to row with the same rhythm, and helps them synchronize their technique.
This was the first Team Race on Slides arranged in Finland since many years and the 1st ever race in Finland where handicap factors were used, allowing teams of any setup to race against each other on equal terms. The handicap factors take into account the ages, gender, and the weights of the rowers, forming a joint handicap determining a start time for the team. We chose to have teams of two or four simply because these kind of crews are easier to assemble than a full eight, and additionally having eights race against each other would have required not only a very large hall to race in but also a large number of slides and cables…
Having mixed teams consisting of young and old, heavy and lightweight, allows for a very exciting race especially as the handicap factors in theory make the teams reach the finish line at the same time. There was a lot of excitement and cheering in the air at all seven of the CF Regatta races, and the results were surprisingly equal, with the teams indeed finishing the races almost at the same time. The results after handicaps are taken into account have been published together with videos of all races at the RowingPerfomance FB page.
The race was organized as a team effort by the Keravan Urheilijat rowing club, Crossfit Tuusula, and our Quiske startup but the main motor behind the successful event for sure was Pentti Soini who was wearing both Keravan Urheilijat and Quiske hats. Quiske field testing team consisting of Pentti and Kristina Björknäs visited the Danish National Indoor Rowing Championships in January and that’s where the team handicap calculation method was “discovered”. In fact in Denmark slide competitions like the CF Regatta have been organized regularly for the past several years by the local indoor rowing expert Reiner Modest. Quiske team received helpful advice from Reiner on how to use the handicap method with connected Ergos on slides. In a smaller country like Finland where there aren’t that many rowers to choose from, the handicap method makes it easier to find enough rowers from each club when putting together teams for indoor races, and that’s why we believe there will be more CF Regatta type races in Finland in the future :-)
Ilkka Hyytiäinen from Quiske also ran an indoor rowing technique class at the CF Regatta. There rowers could measure their indoor rowing metrics using the Quiske Rowing Performance System we have recently launched. Our System measures the handle and seat velocities and their relationship, and plots graphs and gives numerical metrics in real time, which helps improve technique right there and then, stroke by stroke. At CrossFit and other gyms people using the Ergo are sometimes not so familiar with correct technique and our system especially helps identify and get rid of typical beginners mistakes such as bum shooting or rushing on recovery. The contestants at the CF Regatta were all, however, already on good terms with Mr Ergo and Quiske arranged a Challenge where the rowers were asked to meet the pretty challenging metrics set by Pentti. Most of the CF Regatta participants were able to meet the Quiske Challenge, meaning in practice that they are able to row with a pre-defined rhythm. Having a crew rowing with the same rhythm is key for making a boat move efficiently and smoothly, reaching a flow state where all rowers are moving in complete synchrony. Such a boat is likely to reach the finish line faster, especially on longer distance rowing where efficiency can count more than power.
Still some time to go before rowing on water in Finland but with more training on connected slides the Finnish crews will be able to row better together sooner, when the ice melts!
Looking forward to the ice melting...
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