Sunday, 8 January 2012

Row 2, 3 . . .

I’ve been having some rowing lessons. These have turned out to be fun but it is far, far more complex than I had realized. And, rowing with two oars - sculling – is an entirely different prospect to rowing with one oar - sweeping. (Unless of course I have that wrong and they are not the correct terms, but either way they’re still different and still tricky.)

FYI - you can scull by yourself, but you can’t sweep by yourself. (Again, unless of course I have that wrong.)
This is not me. I believe her hands are in much closer, horizontally, than mine. 

Anyway, I have long known I’m not a gifted athlete. Hell, I’m not even very coordinated. Yes, I know my way around a yoga mat but that doesn’t involve any eye/hand coordination. P.E. was never my thing at school, in fact I didn’t even like the P.E. teachers. (Back then they were a little bitchy and looked down on those of us who were always chosen last for any team. I’m sure it’s different now.)

When I was having dancing lessons that was always fun- you should’ve seen my dance teacher. Hot, hot, hot. I don’t know why men don’t think dancing is sexy. Hell, if you can Argentine tango with someone . . . er, but I digress. Dancing - fun, but when I had to stand in front of my instructor and then mirror him it’d never work. I had to stand behind him to copy his footsteps. Of course I have improved now. The key is to not think about it too much; now I can follow a lead. If the man can dance, then generally I can too. 

Oh, and do you remember my attempts at Step class? Once the choreography got too complicated I’d invariably be leaping over the step in the opposite direction to everyone else.

So I had few hopes that I’d turn out to be a natural at rowing but I figured I could eventually learn how to do it. I mean, I can exercise in a room heated to 40+ degrees . . . and enjoy it, surely I can learn to row?

Today wasn’t one of my stellar performances. My lovely rowing instructor, Sue, has everlasting patience. Thank goodness because today I couldn’t tell my left hand from my right.

I had been rowing but ended up coming back in too close to the landing and couldn’t get myself away from it. I was probably attempting to cross the river.

“Row with your right oar,” yelled Sue, helpfully. I obeyed her instructions, mysteriously not getting any further away from the landing.

“That’s your left oar,” Sue continued.

“Oh, so it is,” I muttered feeling foolish, as you do.

There was also a close call when I almost went into the river. Previously I had thought it was rather difficult to fall out of the boat or capsize it, but I almost managed it today.

“Keep your hands together, Stella, they’re poles apart,” instructed Sue as I tilted the boat dangerously from side to side. Saved, she continued, “How’s your adrenaline?”

My adrenaline was fine, it’s fun, and fortunately Sue’s patience is never ending so I will persevere.


  1. Rowing is something I've always been kind of interested in, but unfortunately live in a rural and landlocked area so my options are limited. I love being on, in or near the water and miss it desperately. So I will vicariously enjoy your lessons. ;)

  2. Thanks Masked Mom, I shall report again on my rowing triumphants. . .