Prepping for the Fall Season
The majority of us have been out of a boat for quite some time now. Even if we were fortunate enough to race during the summer, our season likely ended at the conclusion of Canadian Henley which was a month ago. Now it's time to shift gears as we prepare for our fall racing season to begin.
There are a lot of things to consider when making the transition back into the fall season. Depending on where your team trains wardrobe and any other specific equipment (I coxed in Boston and always made sure I had safety lights, extra clothing, and something to help loosen wingnuts and oarlocks in case of ice/cold hands) should be at the top of your list. It is also important to place a higher premium on steering since our course can have a much greater impact during a head race than a 2k. There are obvious differences between fall and spring racing: the course is longer and the cadence is generally lower, there are usually turns to navigate, etc.
What about the not so obvious ones? How does our tone change in the boat? What sort of calls should we be making that would be different than sprint racing? What is our role in practice and how does it differ? Is there really that much of a difference between the fall head racing season and the spring/summer sprint season?
All of these things should be considered before we hit the water again. The best coxswains are typically the most prepared and it is important to anticipate a change and be proactive as opposed to reactive. Be sure to put some thought into how you want your fall season to play out before heading back to the boathouse so you can hit the ground (water) running this season.