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said the coach to her newbie rowers.

After years of wanting to try (and one summer of being snubbed by a certain club, *cough* Kennebecasis Rowing *cough*) I’ve started a Learn-to-Row program at the Vancouver Rowing Club. Today was our first day out on the water and actually moving somewhere.

The thing is, you need to have your blade at the right angle and the right depth going into the water as you begin each stroke, but if you want to actually see that happen you have to turn your head to look behind you. The catch is that you also have to keep in time with the other rowers, which does not work if you turn to look at your oar. Curse you evolutionary history of mankind with the eyes ony on one side of my head! You could at least have given me one just above my left ear.

On top of that (or, more accurately, before all of that), keeping the boat balanced would also be nice. I’m actually surprised eight people trying to do all that at once for the first time in our lives were able to go as far as we did. But go we did, and we’ll do it again on Thursday.

As a side note, I was all set to post a link to the History of Rowing archives I helped put together when I worked for the Rothesay Living Museum, but it seems like it’s gone offline sometime in the last year. Maybe Industry Canada’s servers are having a bad day. The Internet Wayback Machine has archived most of it, but not the videos, which are the coolest thing since I was the one who filmed them. Take a look at the archive of Rowing: The Legacy of Renforth anyway, and pretend like you’re watching my beautiful cinematography. And oh, here’s a good chance to embarrass myself—looks like they’ve also archived the flash animations I had a hand in. Find them on the education page.

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