Monday, April 03, 2006

Our First Home Regotta!!

On Saturday we had our first home regotta on Lake Lemon! It was pretty exciting and this time i got the cox the FIRST novice boat which is the fastest of all the novice boats which was REALLY exciting so i hope i can keep that spot still :) We ended up winning by like 20+ seconds against Dayton and Cinncinatti which was awesome and just a boost that the boat needed, they lost to Michigan State if you will remember. So now i am officially an undefeated coxswain which is pretty cool bragging rights if you ask me :)! again, heres a link just to read how awesome we did again... Well i guess i dont have any rowing terms for you in this entry so instead im going to put some pictures up of the first novice crew that i coxed this weekend because i love my rowers and they love their cox!

here is us having fun like real rowers and cox know how to do :)!!!!!!!!!!! UP AND OVER HEADS, READY UP! (thats a coxing call... just for fun i got to throw it in there)

This is our boat! From left to right.... Top Row: Brittaney Billingsley, Jess Keller, Ashley Johnson, Marla Alexander, Jenn Maslanka Bottom Row: Kiri Crane, ME! (carboe) , Kelsey Kapral, Jamie Spoto and the dog, Rozzie :)

enjoy the pictures... until next time, your favorite cox...

- carboe

Michigan State Regotta

So last weekend we headed down to Michigan State to compete in our first official regotta. It was kind of different from Clemson,
1. it was cold
2. their course is NOT in a straight line, it is basically a turn to port the ENTIRE time

anyways... my boat captured the only win at chilly michigan state (it was snowing when we got there!!!) so that was really exciting for us, not so hot for the whole team but at least we did our part.

here is the link to read all about how awesome we did -

The one thing i want to talk about in this blog entry is a crab. When you catch a crab in rowing - which we did in our second race (which didnt count towards the overall score or anything in the regotta) it can cost you a race - which it did, we lost in the last 500 meters because one of our ports caught a crab and we couldnt pull it out in time to catch the boat that passed us as we were sitting dead in the water. Ok so crab lesson!

This happens to a rower when the oar blade is not properly removed from the water and feathered. The oar gets stuck in the water and is forced down, the oar handle is forced into the chest of the rower and can hurl the rower out of the boat. If this happens, lean backwards rapidly, let the oar pass over you, then try and bring it under control and out of the water and resume rowing. Other rowers should ignore the crab the best they can and continue rowing, unless the coxswain calls for a stop.
“Catching a crab”
Rower saying, meaning the rower’s blade entered the water at an angle, instead of perpendicular. As a result, the blade gets caught under the surface of the water, usually at the end of the pull through. Most likely to occur in choppy and poor conditions.

lets all be crab free!
until next time -

Saturday, March 18, 2006

Spring Break News

So i just got back from Clemson, South Carolina traveling on a 10 hour bus ride after completing an weeks worth of training that ended in our first race... and victory! of the season.

So i won the spot of coxing the second novice boat - something im pretty proud of seeing as i have never coxed or rowed before, anyways my boat was scheduled to race the only other second novice boat that had come down there (purdue's) but seeing as in the first novice race there were two lanes open we opted to try and get into their race and give our first novice boat a run for their money.

We ended up killing Purdue's second novice boat as well as their first novice boat along with Marist's first novice boat. We came in third behind Indiana (who took first) and Clemson (who took second).

So that was the cumulation of all our training down there! or at least the novice training (the varsity 8 came in 2nd in their race as did the varsity 4).

I just realized that when i put down coxswain calls that i didnt really even put down calls at all - i just put down like vocabulary so now i am going to put down my race plan (or the skeleton of it) and try to explain it a little bit -

2K Race Plan

0 - 500 meters
- 5 stroke start (3/4, 1/2, 3/4, Lengthen, Full) <- these here are the strokes according to slides)
- 20 HIGH (this gets the rowers into a sprint right off their start - then they switch down in two strokes to their base (what they will sustain throughout the rest of the race))
- throughout the rest of the first 500 i sit there and remind the rowers to get cruisin, breathe, sit up, take efficient strokes and all of that while also calling off their stroke rates and splits.
- at the end of the 500 we might take a 5 or a 10 to take it over the line
600 - 900 meters
- here we take a power 30 (which is like HIGH strokes - they are fast and strong and a sprint)
- 10 for FOCUS (this is their race they need to focus in and row HARD)
- Silent 10 to set up the boat make sure they are rowing together
- 10 for PRIDE (all the work that they have done will be pay off here)
1000 meters
- take 5 to cross the halfway line
1100 meters
- remind them that all the other crews will be taking their movies here, tell them where they stand and how their splits look.
1200 - 1400 meters
- this is their move -> WHATS A HOOSIER!?
- on this move i call out everybody's name in the boat (bow to stern) and then throw some "powerfull" words in there (determined, intimidating, strong, fierce... ect.)
1500 - 1750 meters
- prepare them for their sprint, keep them focused internally so that they can walk up on other crews... remind them of the sacrifices they have made for the team, how they need to put it all on the line, NO REGRETS
1750 - 2000 meters
- this is their sprint they will go up 2 in 2 for 10 (x3)

alright well its getting late and that bus ride was killer sooo i am going to hit the hay!

next week we have a race at Michigan State so there will be updates to come :)

till next time!
- carboe

Monday, March 13, 2006

coxing calls

I guess another reason that i really like the idea of blogging about coxing is because when i started out and was new to the sport i searched online for things that had to do with coxing and didnt really find anything that was interesting to me... im thinking about taking a compilation of my blog entries and maybe making a wikipedia site with them! well see what happens with that.

Ok... im going to fill you guys in on some coxing lingo -


At a large regatta, such as the Head of the Charles, you may see eight different kinds of boats raced. Rowers in boats in which each rower handles two oars are called scullers. These come in singles, doubles, and quads. Rowers with only one oar are called sweep rowers. These come as doubles, with and without coxswain, fours, with and without (without coxswains are also called "straight pairs" or "straight fours"), and eights with coxswain. Coxswains normally sit in the stern, where they can see the whole boat and communicate face-to-face with the stroke, but you may also see boats with the coxswain in the bow, lying nearly prone. This inhibits communications somewhat, but reduces wind resistance and improves the weight distribution in the boat. All the boats are called shells, although boats rowed by scullers are also called sculls. A new, quality eight costs upwards of $20,000.

The front of the boat.

The back of the boat.

That portion of the bow and stern that are covered with fiberglass, cloth, or thin plastic.

Oars propel the boat through the water. Sweep oars are about 12-13 feet long and made of graphite. They cost about $250 each.

The wide part of the oar that is used to move the boat through the water. The blade is painted with the school's colors and is a way to distinguish among boats at a distance.

The bar across the oarlock that keeps the oar in place.

A wide collar on the oar that keeps it from slipping through the oarlock.

The triangular-shaped metal device that is bolted onto the side of the boat and holds the oars.

The little tracks in which the seats are set to allow the seats to move back and forth as the rower completes his or her movement.

Foot Stretchers
Where the rower's feet go. The stretcher consists of two inclined footrests which hold the rower's shoes. The shoes are bolted into the footrests.

An electronic amplifier for the coxswain's voice that plugs into a speaker system built into the boat, so that each rower can hear his or her instructions. It also contains a strokemeter which works from the magnet under the stroke's seat and measures the cadence, or strokes rowed per minute.

Also called an "erg," it's a rowing machine that closely approximates the actual rowing motion. The verb "to erg" means to work out on an ergometer. An "erg piece" is a particular set of work on the ergometer, such as rowing 2500 meters. Erg tests are used by coaches to ascertain an athlete's aerobic and endurance capabilities. There is even a World Indoor Rowing Championship event, held annually in Boston - The CRASH - B's.

There are two types of races: Head races, and sprints. Head races are usually held in the Fall and sprints in the Spring. Sprints are 2000 meters for college. In sprints, boats race directly against each other in lanes on a marked straight or nearly straight course. In larger meets, there will usually be qualifying rounds, then petite finals for non-qualifying boats and grand finals for the top finishers in the qualifying rounds. Qualification is by placement, not by time, i.e. a second place boat in one heat will qualify before a fourth place boat in another, even if the fourth place boat had a better time. Head races are longer, usually 2.5 to 3.5 miles, and are timed events. Boats start off typically at 15 second intervals and all race the same course, often with many turns, following the course of the river.


The person who steers the shell and is the on-the-water coach, cheerleader, and strategist. Pronounced "cox-n".

Bowman or Bow
The rower whose back is closest to the front of the boat, i.e. the first rower to cross the finish line. This is also the #1 seat.

The #8 seat, the rower sitting closest to the stern. The stroke sets the rhythm for the boat; others behind must follow that cadence.

We all know what the job of a coach is, but what he/she rides in to follow crews on the water is called a launch.


"Crew" means rowing team, so don't inquire about the crew "team" since the word "team" is redundant. The nine people--a crew-- when placed in a shell are called a "boat". One does not refer to an empty shell as a "boat".

Don't ask about record times, since they are so influenced by weather conditions as to be virtually meaningless.

Any rowing event involving competition. Any race is a regatta, however, large or small. Races are never called "meets" or "games" and rowers do not "play crew". A popular crew slogan is "Athletes row. Others play games".


Stroke rate
The number of strokes per minute at which the team is rowing. At the start of the race, the rate is high perhaps 40 for an eight then settles to the low 30's for the body of the race, then may move back to the low 40's for a finishing sprint.

When an oar blade enters the water at an angle, instead of perpendicularly, it can get caught under the surface. The oar handle drives into the stomach and has the potential to throw a rower out of the boat entirely! Even if not that disastrous, "catching a crab" will certainly drastically interrupt the flow of the boat through the water.

The "catch" is the point in the stroke where the oar blade enters the water. The catch is supposed to happen at the very end of the recovery, when the hands are as far ahead of the rower as possible. Rowers who begin to uncoil before they drop the oar blades are sacrificing speed by not getting a complete drive. "Lunging at the catch" means the motion is not smooth. If you see a lot of splash at the catch, assuming the water is relatively smooth (or "flat"), the oar blades are not entering the water properly.

The balance and feel of the boat. The most efficient boats are balanced evenly over the center line and remain so throughout the strokes. If rowers are not aligned properly, or a rower swings off center as part of his or her motion during a stroke, or if rowers on one side of the boat are pulling with more or less force than the other side, the set of the boat can be altered, introducing drag into its motion.

When the blades are brought out of the water, then should all move horizontally at the same height, just above the water. The rower is "skying" if the hands are dropped too low before the catch, causing the oar blade to rise before it drops into the water. Proper feathering is always difficult, but becomes extremely challenging in choppy water.

Just after the catch, the rower begins pulling back on the oar. Initially, the body position should not change; all the work is being done by the legs. Then, the upper body begins to uncoil, and the arms start their work of pulling the oar through the water. Finally, the rower pulls his or her hands quickly to the body, finishing in a "layback" position.

After the drive, the oar handle is moved down, drawing the oar blade from the water. At the same time, it is turned horizontal to the surface ("feathered").

The oar remains out of the water as the rower first pushes his or her hands away form the body and past the knees. Then the body follows the hands and the sliding seat moves forward until, knees bent the rower is ready for the next catch.

The amount of effort a rower puts into the stroke. Races, of course, are conducted at full pressure, but practices and warm-ups may entail a series of strokes at half or three-quarter pressure.

In order to get the boat away from the dock, each rower simultaneously puts one foot in the boat and pushes away from the dock with the other foot. From this position they sit down, strap into their foot stretchers, and row away.

The inexpressible "feel" of a boat that is moving together as a single unit. The sound is incredible, the feeling is unbelieveable, and everything else melts away.

alright... so theres a lot of information, i actually got it from ithaca's rowers, so thank you for that you guys!

Hope this helps someone in the future :)!

over and out...
- carboe

Sunday, March 12, 2006

ok so i know what i need to do my blog about now... finally!

Alright so Thom said that in class that our blogs didnt have to be about the media in particular... or at least not in the way that our class was thinking that it was...

Instead now this blog is going to be about rowing as Thom suggested - that way my blog may interest other people and then that will connect me to other people through media and so on and so forth...

So right now i am a coxswain for the Indiana Rowing Team, before coming to Indiana i had never been rowing before, or even really watched it before. I got into the sport because of a friend who was on the team - she said that a coxswain had just quit and they were looking for someone to help them out. My first day on the launch i couldnt believe how beautiful the sport was. So fluid and serene looking. BEAUTIFUL!

So long story short, i love it now and we are in South Carolina as i type for our spring training trip. We are having practice 2-3 times a day and are working our butts off to get ready to race on saturday... There are a few different boats that you are able to row - 1 seater, 2 seater, 4 seater, and 8 seater... as a team we only row the four and the eight.

A four boat is rowed from the bow and you face out towards the bow ball (the part that crosses the finish line first) the rowers have their backs towards you and row that way. The four is steered by taking the steering "stick" thing and pushing it towards where you want to go. The coxswain is supposed to lie down in a four so that your legs are all the way under the part of the boat that comes off the bow ball. Then your back has a strap that is like the back of a chair and then there is a little place for your head to rest.

An eight is rowed pretty differently - the coxswain sits at the stern and faces their rowers and steers from there - when you want to steer there is not a steering "stick" but instead a rope that goes around your seat and then loops back to the rudder under the boat. To turn one way you pull down on the opposite side of the rope (opposite from steering the four - which is why it is hard to switch from one to the other!).

In both boats right in front of you there is a place to put your "cox box". The cox box regesters the time of the row (how long you have been rowing), the stroke rate (how fast you are pulling), and a stroke count (how many strokes you have pulled). It also contains the microphone set up (the microphone comes out of the cox box and then plugs into the boat so everyone can hear you).

There is one more thing that a coxswain can use in addition to the cox box and its called a speed coach. The speed coach can do most of the things that a cox box can do - it registers stroke rate, time and all that stuff but it doesnt have the microphone system. The speed coach is really helpful though because it is able to register the meters that have been rowed, the split at which they are rowing at and lots of other things that i havent quite figured out what they do yet! (i just learned about them today) :)

Alright - well i have practice tomorrow pretty early soooo i will be get going now, but i will definately be updating later - now that i actually have something to write about that im actually interested in!!!!

till next time -

Friday, February 03, 2006

Smart Men Get It Too...

I have been a pretty big fan of the WB because of their shows like Will and Grace & Sex And The City. Their slogan has been "Smart Women Get It" usually after these mentioned shows. I noticed the other day though that they had adopted a new slogan - "Smart Men Get It Too".
This was interesting to me because i actually noticed it right away (which i have to admit kind of surprised me) it seems kind of wierd that the WB would change this because it sounds kind of wierd to me, a pretty regular viewer.
The only reason i could think of them changing this is because some men complianed about it and that just seems too silly. It is interesting that it is on these shows though which makes me think that maybe these men that complained were of the homosexual nature because not many of the guys that i know would ever watch those shows willingly and then complain about them being discriminatory.

More later... just thought i should throw in an update -

- carboe

Wednesday, January 25, 2006


Alright, today... we focus on the television!

In recent news it has been said that UPN and the WB are merging to form CW. This CW stands for CBS and Warner Brothers interestingly enough im sure that there was a debate on whether or not the C or the W should come first but i think CW is more appropriate because look at this...


get it? Water Closet?

I thought that was kind of funny and it makes sense now why CBS would come first, but i think that that would be kind of obvious because CBS is buying the merged company. ANYWAYS... CW will be broadcasting the most popular shows of each station. These shows include
- America's Next Top Model
- Everybody Hates Chris
- Veronica Mars
- Smallville
- Gilmore Girls
both previous stations (WB and UPN) are supposed to get equal playing time on CW but my question is... what channel will they use? Will they use both UPN and WB's previous channel numbers or pick one? and if they pick one what other channel will fill the gap?

Alright... on to more TV news...

There is the major television channel geared towards wome, Lifetime, they pretty much only have one other channel to compete with even though this channel has NOTHING on them... the channel? Oxygen. Oxygen because they arent doing so hot in the media world, have come up with a new show called "Campus Ladies" it is about two middle aged women who go back to college. The ad is really what struck me though - seen here at....
If that doesnt work however, ill give you a little sampling. The first picture is a women, all you can see is her chest and she looks (from the chest view) young and pretty fit. The ad though, immediatly changes to the SAME picture but now this time with a not so fit chest... in fact it looks like an older woman with a more saggy chest.
This ad really stood out in my mind because this channel, oxygen, is geared towards women. And this ad to me does not really depict women in an appropriate way. There is no face no hips... NOTHING but chest. It will be interesting to say if anything comes up about this and if this ad will attract women or offend them, and will it help oxygen at all?

Alright i think thats good for now - my TV update

till next time - carboe

Tuesday, January 24, 2006

My first real posting...

Ok so heres the deal, i actually am going to get up on this and start writing more.

For our assignment on friday we had to pick out a topic that could possibly inspire the class for presentations. My topic was metaphors in the media. When we talked about this in discussion i really found it very interesting. The way that people who design and produce and publicize these different forms of media were really smart when they decided to use the previous forms of media as cornerstones for these big new things. ok i know that sounds really crazy but think about this, how webpages have bookmarks. Or even that a webpage is called a "page" at all. That relates to books, which were huge before the internet was big. People decided to use this idea of a "page" and a "bookmark" because people could relate it to something that they already knew and that made it more comfortable for them!
Another thing that i stumbled upon would be how computers have "viruses" when computers, really, cant get sick persay. This is another metaphor example because here people relate the computer virus to the computer being sick and having something wrong with it that needs to be made better. I dont know who is reading these or anything but if you could think of any other metaphors that are used in the media i would love to explore them!
Ill work on posting more!
- till then, carboe