Korzeniowski’s Training Suggestions for May and June 2019

The month of May is the peak of racing season, with some championships being held at the end of May and beginning of June. Except for those juniors who have five weeks from their regional regatta until the national championships, no one else has time for solid preparation leading up to the championships. Many programs have only 10 days for final preparation.

If you have raced every weekend and you pushed intensity (2 workouts above AT per week, plus the race), it means you have done enough intensity already. It is possible that the crew has lost some aerobic base and now needs to find a few days for U2 and U1 aerobic workouts. I would suggest the following preparation in the 10 days leading up to the final regatta:

  • 4 days of workouts below AT: restore aerobic base (U2), restore some power per stroke, (U1) side-by-side, recover technique
  • 2 days of higher intensity, long interval (TR1) 3 x 1500m at (32, 34, 36) or just race-pace pieces (3 x 1000m or 2 x 1250m)
  • 4 days of easy workouts, resting, with one piece of race-pace per day (1 x 750m or 3 x 250)

If the boat is slow because it cannot match the cadence of the opposition, that is good news. It means there is some room for improvement by raising the cadence. My advice would be to increase the cadence gradually on all transportation pieces (TR1) and (TR2). For instance, 6x (1’ on/1’ off), start at 32 and gradually up to 38-40. Check the speed at the first cadence and make sure that the crew increases the speed of the boat with every increase of cadence. The secret of racing at high cadence is to teach your crew to move in the boat quickly, horizontally without diving before the catch, without too much layback, taking the boat on the run without “chopping wood at the catch.” Teach them how to flow fast. “Builders” are the best to teach that. How are they done correctly? I’ll explain below.

If the boat is not fast enough racing at the same cadence as the opposition, there might be many factors to consider such as not enough power, lacking technique or just poor racing. In this case, I would advise to focus on U1 workouts, side-by-side, to generate more power per stroke. Additionally, power workouts with bungees could be incorporated, for instance, (4-6) x 120 strokes. The 120 strokes are made up by (20 strokes at 16/ 10 strokes at 22-24), 7 minutes rest after each set.

Many rowers do not know how to pull hard. To stay in touch with the high cadence, I would suggest to use the warm-ups for some speed and accelerations. For instance, 10x (20”/40” off) at 40 and above.

The standard NON-racing week could look as follows:

If you think you do not need a high cadence workout, substitute Friday TR2 with U2/U1 Tuesday workout.

Take Friday easy, like a normal pre-race day if you still race on Saturday.

For improving the ability to row high cadence, I suggest the following suggested “Builders” sessions:

Start by 6, (stern/bow) at 1/2 pressure and very relaxed. Do not add power as you go up!

  1. Start with back/arms, 5 strokes slow, then build for 15 at max, repeat 1x each 6.
  2. Switch to ¼ slide, 15 strokes paddle, then build up for 15 gradually up to 48. Repeat 1x each 6.
  3. Switch to all 8 together, 15 strokes paddle, then build for 15 gradually up to 48. Repeat 2x.
  4. Switch to 1/2 slide, and repeat the same process as on 1/4 slide, go up to 44. Repeat 2x.
  5. Switch to 3/4 slide, the same execution up to 42-44, switch to full slide and repeat 2x.
  6. Switch to full slide, the same process up to max.

This above exercise takes approximately 5km. Incorporate a good solid warm-up and use this every second day.

If you have any questions related to the program, feel free to contact me via email at Kris.Korzeniowski@usrowing.org

– Kris Korzeniowski

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