What is a Frontloaded Catch?

What is a Frontloaded Catch?

Post by James H » Thu, 18 Apr 2013 15:28:05


Quote:

> Dear all,

> In the October 2011 Rowing Biomechanics Newsletter Dr. Kleshnev writes:

> An optimal force curve must be frontloaded, full and not have any humps

> (RBN 2006/06, 2008/02).

> When I think about it, it occurs to me that I actually do not know what

> frontloaded means.

> Is Dr. Kleshnev merely advising us to get as much power as we can as quickly

> as we can?

> Or is he advising us to get as long as we possibly can at the catch, even at

> the expense of the finish?

> Or does he mean something else?

> Frontloaded catches are a very familiar term in rowing circles these days.

> Can anyone provide a definition?

> Cordially,

> Charles

Carl,

I think I was agreeing with you - the cappuccino froth was when I get it wrong and inefficient and do not properly bury the blade.

The bit I am trying to analyse is when I bend the handle.

bury blade, apply force by bringing the hands together and then leg drive.

Are you saying that my arms are sufficiently strong enough to bend the shaft? - It feels to me that my arms are string enough to generate that initial lift (read my 'lock on') and then the legs are strong enough to bend the shaft.

so I think (though I do express myself sloppily on occasion) the only bit where I differ from what I understand (though referred to by another and attributed to you) you state, is in breaking the arms at the catch. My thinking on this is sheer muscle size - while I can see that many rowers can break early and then row through with bent arms, it introduces a weaker set of muscles that we would never encourage in say weightlifting.

When I break early (all other things being equal) I feel weaker - whereas when I create that early lift/connection with the inward movement of the hands (without breaking or pushing backwards) I feel I am connected and ready to bend the shafts with the drive.

Hey ho, happy to admit that I could be way wrong through :)(sunlight is the best disinfectant though!)

James

 
 
 

What is a Frontloaded Catch?

Post by Carl » Thu, 18 Apr 2013 19:53:00


Quote:

>> Dear all,

>> In the October 2011 Rowing Biomechanics Newsletter Dr. Kleshnev writes:

>> An optimal force curve must be frontloaded , full and not have any humps

>> (RBN 2006/06, 2008/02).

>> When I think about it, it occurs to me that I actually do not know what

>> frontloaded means.

>> Is Dr. Kleshnev merely advising us to get as much power as we can as quickly

>> as we can?

>> Or is he advising us to get as long as we possibly can at the catch, even at

>> the expense of the finish?

>> Or does he mean something else?

>> Frontloaded catches are a very familiar term in rowing circles these days.

>> Can anyone provide a definition?

>> Cordially,

>> Charles

> Carl,

> I think I was agreeing with you - the cappuccino froth was when I get it wrong and inefficient and do not properly bury the blade.

> The bit I am trying to analyse is when I bend the handle.

That's easy.  The shaft bends in direct proportion to the load, but the
load varies from catch to finish, starting from zero & returning to
zero.  So, unless & until you bend the shaft you have no load & are
doing no work - in effect wasting time & stroke distance in which you
should/could have been doing work.  That's what I meant about the
pointlessness of the touchy-feely approach to technique.

Quote:

> bury blade, apply force by bringing the hands together and then leg drive.

> Are you saying that my arms are sufficiently strong enough to bend the shaft? - It feels to me that my arms are string enough to generate that initial lift (read my 'lock on') and then the legs are strong enough to bend the shaft.

And there's the conceptual problem: any load bends the shaft - the shaft
is completely elastic & there is _no_ point in the loading process at
which it starts to bend - it happens (minutely) as the very first
migrograms of force are applied to the handles.  I love the idea of arms
being "string enough" & clearly recall feeling that knackered that
string was all that remained ;)

Let's get clear, too: you don't "generate the initial lift".  You
generate the load & 'lift' is the way that water flowing along the
length of the blade reacts to any loaded foil (remember, what ever we
may choose to believe to the contrary, the blade travels tip-first
through the water over the first 1/3 or so of the stroke).  Talking
about you generating lift is like talking about hard ground doing
something for you when you jump.  No, it just sits there, fairly
unyeilding, & can't help itself but stay put, so you jump & think
nothing about it.

Quote:

> so I think (though I do express myself sloppily on occasion) the only bit where I differ from what I understand (though referred to by another and attributed to you) you state, is in breaking the arms at the catch. My thinking on this is sheer muscle size - while I can see that many rowers can break early and then row through with bent arms, it introduces a weaker set of muscles that we would never encourage in say weightlifting.

Stroke force builds up over time & distance, so the supposedly weaker
muscles are well suited to do their stuff during the early loading
process when loads, 'though rising, are low.  Rowing suffers from being
interminably described as a series of postures as if no rower actually
moved in a fluid manner.  If you think of the stroke in dynamic terms,
with the relative motions of all those various light & heavier chunks of
body interacting with each other, the boat, the handles & the handles
themselves reacting against a flexible oar-shaft, then it becomes
admittedly a more complex problem.  But we do have to shake off the
shackles of simplistic postural thinking to be able to understand what
really happens in the stroke.

How well an arm, say, carries a load depends on the degree to which it
is bent & whether you insist on trying to hold that elbow joint in any
one position regardless of load or treat the arm as a flexible,
contractable link in the whole process, one able to apply modest loads
when somewhat bent but carry everything your legs can throw at it when
not "locked out" (that's over-extension, IMHO) but when scarcely bent.

Quote:
> When I break early (all other things being equal) I feel weaker - whereas when I create that early lift/connection with the inward movement of the hands (without breaking or pushing backwards) I feel I am connected and ready to bend the shafts with the drive.

You may now see the problem with this kind of sequential postural
thinking?  Don't try to take the stroke with any particular set of
muscles.  The body will work well enough without you telling it the
order or by how much different bits should work.  Take away the rigid
thinking & you'll have a living, dynamic action which you can mould into
one which becomes more effective & natural.  That's pretty much what
Steve Fairbairn was advocating the best part of a century back

Quote:
> Hey ho, happy to admit that I could be way wrong through :)(sunlight is the best disinfectant though!)

> James

Being wrong is what we all do, most of the time.

First mistake was taking up rowing, but what a wonderful mistake to have
made!  Thinking of rowing as a set of postures rather than a flowing
action is, however, an unfortunate error, the result of rowing not being
seen often enough by its teachers as a gymnastic process in which the
relative motions of every body element flow inexorably from what went
immediately before & which in turn must flow into the next frame of the
movie.  Rowing is not a "stop-motion" but a live action process.  And we
are all fumbling towards that understanding.

Cheers -
carl

--
Carl Douglas Racing Shells        -
     Fine Small-Boats/AeRoWing Low-drag Riggers/Advanced Accessories
Write:   Harris Boatyard, Laleham Reach, Chertsey KT16 8RP, UK
Find:    tinyurl.com/2tqujf



 
 
 

What is a Frontloaded Catch?

Post by James H » Thu, 18 Apr 2013 22:17:58

Quote:



> >> Dear all,

> >> In the October 2011 Rowing Biomechanics Newsletter Dr. Kleshnev writes:

> >> An optimal force curve must be frontloaded, full and not have any humps

> >> (RBN 2006/06, 2008/02).

> >> When I think about it, it occurs to me that I actually do not know what

> >> frontloaded means.

> >> Is Dr. Kleshnev merely advising us to get as much power as we can as quickly

> >> as we can?

> >> Or is he advising us to get as long as we possibly can at the catch, even at

> >> the expense of the finish?

> >> Or does he mean something else?

> >> Frontloaded catches are a very familiar term in rowing circles these days.

> >> Can anyone provide a definition?

> >> Cordially,

> >> Charles

> > Carl,

> > I think I was agreeing with you - the cappuccino froth was when I get it wrong and inefficient and do not properly bury the blade.

> > The bit I am trying to analyse is when I bend the handle.

> That's easy.  The shaft bends in direct proportion to the load, but the

> load varies from catch to finish, starting from zero & returning to

> zero.  So, unless & until you bend the shaft you have no load & are

> doing no work - in effect wasting time & stroke distance in which you

> should/could have been doing work.  That's what I meant about the

> pointlessness of the touchy-feely approach to technique.

> > bury blade, apply force by bringing the hands together and then leg drive.

> > Are you saying that my arms are sufficiently strong enough to bend the shaft? - It feels to me that my arms are string enough to generate that initial lift (read my 'lock on') and then the legs are strong enough to bend the shaft.

> And there's the conceptual problem: any load bends the shaft - the shaft

> is completely elastic & there is _no_ point in the loading process at

> which it starts to bend - it happens (minutely) as the very first

> migrograms of force are applied to the handles.  I love the idea of arms

> being "string enough" & clearly recall feeling that knackered that

> string was all that remained ;)

> Let's get clear, too: you don't "generate the initial lift".  You

> generate the load & 'lift' is the way that water flowing along the

> length of the blade reacts to any loaded foil (remember, what ever we

> may choose to believe to the contrary, the blade travels tip-first

> through the water over the first 1/3 or so of the stroke).  Talking

> about you generating lift is like talking about hard ground doing

> something for you when you jump.  No, it just sits there, fairly

> unyeilding, & can't help itself but stay put, so you jump & think

> nothing about it.

> > so I think (though I do express myself sloppily on occasion) the only bit where I differ from what I understand (though referred to by another and attributed to you) you state, is in breaking the arms at the catch. My thinking on this is sheer muscle size - while I can see that many rowers can break early and then row through with bent arms, it introduces a weaker set of muscles that we would never encourage in say weightlifting.

> Stroke force builds up over time & distance, so the supposedly weaker

> muscles are well suited to do their stuff during the early loading

> process when loads, 'though rising, are low.  Rowing suffers from being

> interminably described as a series of postures as if no rower actually

> moved in a fluid manner.  If you think of the stroke in dynamic terms,

> with the relative motions of all those various light & heavier chunks of

> body interacting with each other, the boat, the handles & the handles

> themselves reacting against a flexible oar-shaft, then it becomes

> admittedly a more complex problem.  But we do have to shake off the

> shackles of simplistic postural thinking to be able to understand what

> really happens in the stroke.

> How well an arm, say, carries a load depends on the degree to which it

> is bent & whether you insist on trying to hold that elbow joint in any

> one position regardless of load or treat the arm as a flexible,

> contractable link in the whole process, one able to apply modest loads

> when somewhat bent but carry everything your legs can throw at it when

> not "locked out" (that's over-extension, IMHO) but when scarcely bent.

> > When I break early (all other things being equal) I feel weaker - whereas when I create that early lift/connection with the inward movement of the hands (without breaking or pushing backwards) I feel I am connected and ready to bend the shafts with the drive.

> You may now see the problem with this kind of sequential postural

> thinking?  Don't try to take the stroke with any particular set of

> muscles.  The body will work well enough without you telling it the

> order or by how much different bits should work.  Take away the rigid

> thinking & you'll have a living, dynamic action which you can mould into

> one which becomes more effective & natural.  That's pretty much what

> Steve Fairbairn was advocating the best part of a century back

> > Hey ho, happy to admit that I could be way wrong through :)(sunlight is the best disinfectant though!)

> > James

> Being wrong is what we all do, most of the time.

> First mistake was taking up rowing, but what a wonderful mistake to have

> made!  Thinking of rowing as a set of postures rather than a flowing

> action is, however, an unfortunate error, the result of rowing not being

> seen often enough by its teachers as a gymnastic process in which the

> relative motions of every body element flow inexorably from what went

> immediately before & which in turn must flow into the next frame of the

> movie.  Rowing is not a "stop-motion" but a live action process.  And we

> are all fumbling towards that understanding.

> Cheers -

> carl

> --

> Carl Douglas Racing Shells        -

>      Fine Small-Boats/AeRoWing Low-drag Riggers/Advanced Accessories

> Write:   Harris Boatyard, Laleham Reach, Chertsey KT16 8RP, UK

> Find:    tinyurl.com/2tqujf




Thanks Carl

I am trying to simplify it in my head as a means of explaining it correctly to others - while happily questioning the coaching orthodoxy.

Apologies for always getting the causes and components of the forces and results of forces wrong - I am precise in other parts of my life! (That I think I understand!)

I will play with the pecks vs bent arms and see what it does to my sequence and posture!

James

 
 
 

What is a Frontloaded Catch?

Post by Carl » Fri, 19 Apr 2013 00:03:42


Quote:



>>>> Dear all,

>>>> In the October 2011 Rowing Biomechanics Newsletter Dr. Kleshnev writes:

>>>> An optimal force curve must be frontloaded , full and not have any humps

>>>> (RBN 2006/06, 2008/02).

>>>> When I think about it, it occurs to me that I actually do not know what

>>>> frontloaded means.

>>>> Is Dr. Kleshnev merely advising us to get as much power as we can as quickly

>>>> as we can?

>>>> Or is he advising us to get as long as we possibly can at the catch, even at

>>>> the expense of the finish?

>>>> Or does he mean something else?

>>>> Frontloaded catches are a very familiar term in rowing circles these days.

>>>> Can anyone provide a definition?

>>>> Cordially,

>>>> Charles

>>> Carl,

>>> I think I was agreeing with you - the cappuccino froth was when I get it wrong and inefficient and do not properly bury the blade.

>>> The bit I am trying to analyse is when I bend the handle.

>> That's easy.  The shaft bends in direct proportion to the load, but the

>> load varies from catch to finish, starting from zero & returning to

>> zero.  So, unless & until you bend the shaft you have no load & are

>> doing no work - in effect wasting time & stroke distance in which you

>> should/could have been doing work.  That's what I meant about the

>> pointlessness of the touchy-feely approach to technique.

>>> bury blade, apply force by bringing the hands together and then leg drive.

>>> Are you saying that my arms are sufficiently strong enough to bend the shaft? - It feels to me that my arms are string enough to generate that initial lift (read my 'lock on') and then the legs are strong enough to bend the shaft.

>> And there's the conceptual problem: any load bends the shaft - the shaft

>> is completely elastic & there is _no_ point in the loading process at

>> which it starts to bend - it happens (minutely) as the very first

>> migrograms of force are applied to the handles.  I love the idea of arms

>> being "string enough" & clearly recall feeling that knackered that

>> string was all that remained ;)

>> Let's get clear, too: you don't "generate the initial lift".  You

>> generate the load & 'lift' is the way that water flowing along the

>> length of the blade reacts to any loaded foil (remember, what ever we

>> may choose to believe to the contrary, the blade travels tip-first

>> through the water over the first 1/3 or so of the stroke).  Talking

>> about you generating lift is like talking about hard ground doing

>> something for you when you jump.  No, it just sits there, fairly

>> unyeilding, & can't help itself but stay put, so you jump & think

>> nothing about it.

>>> so I think (though I do express myself sloppily on occasion) the only bit where I differ from what I understand (though referred to by another and attributed to you) you state, is in breaking the arms at the catch. My thinking on this is sheer muscle size - while I can see that many rowers can break early and then row through with bent arms, it introduces a weaker set of muscles that we would never encourage in say weightlifting.

>> Stroke force builds up over time & distance, so the supposedly weaker

>> muscles are well suited to do their stuff during the early loading

>> process when loads, 'though rising, are low.  Rowing suffers from being

>> interminably described as a series of postures as if no rower actually

>> moved in a fluid manner.  If you think of the stroke in dynamic terms,

>> with the relative motions of all those various light & heavier chunks of

>> body interacting with each other, the boat, the handles & the handles

>> themselves reacting against a flexible oar-shaft, then it becomes

>> admittedly a more complex problem.  But we do have to shake off the

>> shackles of simplistic postural thinking to be able to understand what

>> really happens in the stroke.

>> How well an arm, say, carries a load depends on the degree to which it

>> is bent & whether you insist on trying to hold that elbow joint in any

>> one position regardless of load or treat the arm as a flexible,

>> contractable link in the whole process, one able to apply modest loads

>> when somewhat bent but carry everything your legs can throw at it when

>> not "locked out" (that's over-extension, IMHO) but when scarcely bent.

>>> When I break early (all other things being equal) I feel weaker - whereas when I create that early lift/connection with the inward movement of the hands (without breaking or pushing backwards) I feel I am connected and ready to bend the shafts with the drive.

>> You may now see the problem with this kind of sequential postural

>> thinking?  Don't try to take the stroke with any particular set of

>> muscles.  The body will work well enough without you telling it the

>> order or by how much different bits should work.  Take away the rigid

>> thinking & you'll have a living, dynamic action which you can mould into

>> one which becomes more effective & natural.  That's pretty much what

>> Steve Fairbairn was advocating the best part of a century back

>>> Hey ho, happy to admit that I could be way wrong through :)(sunlight is the best disinfectant though!)

>>> James

>> Being wrong is what we all do, most of the time.

>> First mistake was taking up rowing, but what a wonderful mistake to have

>> made!  Thinking of rowing as a set of postures rather than a flowing

>> action is, however, an unfortunate error, the result of rowing not being

>> seen often enough by its teachers as a gymnastic process in which the

>> relative motions of every body element flow inexorably from what went

>> immediately before & which in turn must flow into the next frame of the

>> movie.  Rowing is not a "stop-motion" but a live action process.  And we

>> are all fumbling towards that understanding.

>> Cheers -

>> carl

>> --

>> Carl Douglas Racing Shells        -

>>       Fine Small-Boats/AeRoWing Low-drag Riggers/Advanced Accessories

>> Write:   Harris Boatyard, Laleham Reach, Chertsey KT16 8RP, UK

>> Find:    tinyurl.com/2tqujf



> Thanks Carl

> I am trying to simplify it in my head as a means of explaining it correctly to others - while happily questioning the coaching orthodoxy.

> Apologies for always getting the causes and components of the forces and results of forces wrong - I am precise in other parts of my life! (That I think I understand!)

> I will play with the pecks vs bent arms and see what it does to my sequence and posture!

> James

Well, I don't know to what extent I helped.  What I've re-read looks a
bit like I'm browbeating you, which couldn't have been further from my
wishes - sorry.

I think it a mistake to over-analyse which components you use to achieve
a stroke.  The simple reality is that only the 1st 3 finger of each hand
pull the blades, so that is perhaps all that we need focus on - how to
sweep those fingers as fast as we can around the arc, centred at the
pin, which they have inevitably to follow?  This seems no worse, &
likely to be far better & more relevant to the task in hand, than
pretending we know what's happening at the blade or focussing on leg drive.

Of course, what I'm implying sounds like binning everything we have
learned, but that's really quite impossible since it's been so well
learned.  But what it can do is give you a changed focus, which lacks
all the incoherent waffle we've all spouted as coaches (& commentators).

As a further reflection:  IMO the best stroke is that in which the catch
happens before you know it & the whole of the rest of the stroke follows
through so fast & sweetly that it is done in a seamless piece, a single
sweep through, which seems done before you know it.

All you have then to do its to ensure the depth at all points in the
stroke is adequate to minimise air entrainment & consequent slippage.
And the finish should look after itself.

Enough Zen for one day!

Cheers -
carl

--
Carl Douglas Racing Shells        -
     Fine Small-Boats/AeRoWing Low-drag Riggers/Advanced Accessories
Write:   Harris Boatyard, Laleham Reach, Chertsey KT16 8RP, UK
Find:    tinyurl.com/2tqujf