I actually row fairly similar to what you just described. Being in the
US, I didn't get to watch the worlds on TV or any other medium, for that
matter, so I've not seen M.Pinset's style. But, I'm 6'7" (201 cm), and
I find that I simply don't need to split my knees much to get a full
reach. Granted, at my height, I'm a good deal taller than most of the
people I've rowed with (next tallest team mate was 6'5", about 196 cm),
so I did tend to row a bit short some times. One year though, I had a
different coach and he had me rowing as long as I possibly could,
despite the difference in stroke length, and I still didn't really need
to split my knees. I say "didn't really" because I think I do split
them apart just a bit, at full reach, but not more than an inch or two.
Personally, I find it more comfortable to keep my knees together, and
more stable during the leg drive. I do not, however, tilt my legs to
the side as you said Pinsent does. I think that would be more
uncomfortable than just splitting the knees.
Now, if my team mate Jed reads this, he'll more likely than not post an
anecdote about this very subject, so I'll save him the trouble:
One weekend we were having a joint-workout with Cal State Long Beach, on
their water (not that it matters). Duvall Hecht, (our coach) ever
conscious of how a crew "looks" while rowing, noticed that I was the
only member of the eight who didn't split his knees at the catch. (He
probably noticed this long before, but chose to point it out while we
were working out with another crew.) So, he mentions it, and asks me to
try splitting my knees apart. I didn't want to, and so only spread them
apart a bit. He kept at me, and I resisted. Finally, over the
megaphone, for all to hear, he yells at me something to the effect of,
"KC, my first girlfriend spread her legs easier than you, now do what I
> While watching the worlds' coverage last Saturday, I noticed something
> that has bugged me ever since. I saw that Matthew Pinsent performs his
> recovery like a sculler, viz he does not separate his legs to allow his
> outside arms to extend between them.
> As Julius Sumner Miller would say, "Why is this so?"
> Is it because he only needs to row at 3/4 slide because he's such a
> freak that the rest of the crew can't keep up with him?
> Or is it because his oar is rigged sufficiently high that he has no need
> to do this - he does, however, swivel his legs to the side a bit,
> seemingly to let his arms through.
> Anyone got any answers, it's got me knackered.
> P.S. Does anyone is MElbourne or surrounds have a copy of the video
> that I could copy - I missed the first twenty minutes after stuffing
> around after training?
> Sent via Deja.com http://www.deja.com/
> Before you buy.