Build huge lungs and powerful legs to make the boat fly

“Physiologically, it’s brutal,” says Jimmy Clark, an exercise physiologist with the Institute for Sport Research at the University of Pretoria.

“We’re talking about near maximal sustained ventilation – heart-rate and oxygen uptake to support the high power outputs over the six-odd minutes it takes to row 2 000m, while attempting to maintain the most effective and efficient technical form at stroke rates of 30 to 40 per minute,” he says.

According to Clark their training is focused on leg strength, VO₂ max improvement as well as technique.

“Around 80 percent of the power is generated from the coordinated work of knees, hips and lower back,” he says.

Rowing is primarily a strength-endurance type of sport. Use the one-legged squat to develop strength for optimal leg drive through the rowing stroke. Check this out if you want to Row Right