Sh*t People Say to Rowers

1. It looks so easy!
2. Is it more like canoeing or kayaking?
3. I went canoeing once…
4. What happened to your hands?!
5. Do you row in a swimsuit?
6. In the winter, do you row in a swimming pool?
7. Have you seen “The Social Network?”
8. I use the rowing machine at the gym sometimes.
9. Like this? *Moves hands in circular motion to simulate perceived idea of rowing stroke*
10. Are you the one who gets to yell at everyone while they row?
11. You must have really strong arms.
12. Do you row in one of the ten person boats?
13. If there are two person and four person boats, why aren’t there three person ones?
14. Do you call them “meets” or “competitions?”
15. Your blisters look gross.
16. I totally understand, I had to get up at 6AM once for a soccer tournament.
17. Are races actually intense?
18. You eat like a bird.
19. You never stop eating!
20. Is it ever hard to breath during a race?
21. How do you stay in sync with the other people in your boat?
22. I would definitely want to be the coxswain because it looks easy. All you do is say “row.”
23. I saw it in the Olympics once…
24. Is it called an “urg” because of the sounds you make when you’re on it?
25. I thought the rowing machine was really easy, actually.
26. *gets on erg, sets units to calories, pushes the drag all the way up, begins jerking around for a minute or two, gives up*
27. Once you learn how to row, you don’t have to practice anymore, right?
28. Isn’t the proper term for “rowing” “sculling?”
29. You row in the rain??
30. You row in the snow???
31. Those boats must only cost a couple hundred dollars.
32. Where can I rent one of those canoes?
33. You row without a life jacket??
34. Teach me sometime!
35. Oh. This is actually really difficult.

25 Things You Realize When You Switch from Rowing to Coxing
  1. Coxing is a hell a lot harder than it looks.
  2. It’s hard to get used to port and starboard being on opposite sides.
  3. You get weird little calluses on your thumbs.
  4. Your rowing calluses never really go away.
  5. You suddenly realize everything you ever did wrong as a rower and immediately regret not trying harder to fix it.
  6. Not having to carry boats is such a relief.
  7. You probably shouldn’t consume as many calories as you used to, but you will anyway.
  8. All executive decisions for the boat are on you.
  9. Ultimately, you are to blame for everything that goes wrong with the boat/rowers/race…even if it’s not really your fault.
  10. You will develop very thick skin.
  11. Having experienced the pain of racing first-hand will give you a huge advantage when making motivational calls during races.
  12. You will acquire an extensive knowledge of boat mechanics.
  13. You will also acquire more band-aids, electrical tape, Kleenex, and wrenches than any one person should own.
  14. Fanny packs are actually super functional and you will wonder why they ever went out of style.
  15. Not having to don a uni for every race is amazing.
  16. You will always have to over-prepare for the weather…even more so than when you rowed.
  17. Survival suits are well worth the investment.
  18. You’ll learn how to tackle just about any challenge in a moment’s notice.
  19. Two words: Cox Box
  20. Bow steering and stern steering are two very different ball games.
  21. You will learn how to handle the most stressful situations with poise and grace.
  22. You will also have long cry sessions with other coxswains on your team the night before the race.
  23. All of your non-rowing friends and family members will ask if you’re the person who sits in the boat and yells “row.’
  24. The only thing more boring than erging for three months is watching people erg for three months.
  25. Deep down, you will always miss sitting on a sliding seat with an oar, moving backwards.