A. Transition Phase

A. Transition Phase

p>Transition Phase (November – December)

The Transition Phase is characterized by a reduction in training volume and intensity in order to regenerate physically and mentally without losing the conditioning or strength gains of the previous season. The plan assumes that the rower will work 5 to 6 hours per week in a single session per day at home. The specific goal of this phase is to arrive at winter training in January rested and injury free, ready to get back to work.

This is also an excellent opportunity to put the “handle” away and cross train; x-country skiing, snow shoeing, skating and running will provide excellent general conditioning and help balance muscle strength. Aside from those outdoor activities, elliptical machines provide a great workout, especially if “pedaled” in reverse.

The work for the transition phase is based on what was prescribed for winter training 2011 so it should be familiar to most of team rowers. Equipment requirements are a stability ball, bar bells (2, 5, 10 lb) and resistance bands. All work days begin with the 11 minute warm-up, Abs, and end with 10 minutes of cool down and stretching.

If you are inclined to do more work, then complete the bonus day and add 1 or 2 sets to the Conditioning Segments for better base development, but stay aerobic! Don’t cheat yourself out of an excellent opportunity to relax and build your base at the same time. And, don’t forget to rest.


Abs 1 1 set 20 leg lifts, 30 seconds each front/right/left plank, 30 crunches, 10 superman’s
Abs 2 2 sets 20 leg lifts, 10  roll ups, 10 left & 10 right rotations; all back to back with 30 sec rest between sets
Strength 1 4 sets 10 bent over rows, 10 squat & lat push up, 10 pushups, 10 stability ball hamstring curls, 10 dumbbell toss
Strength 2 4 sets 10 shoulder press, 10 lat pull down, 10 bicep curls, 10  triceps’ overhead press, 1 minute row/ellip at full power, all back to back, with 30 sec rest between sets
Conditioning 1 34 min 3 x 10 min @ 75% mhr with 2 min rest between pieces
Conditioning 2 34 min 3 x 3 min @ 70%/4 @ 80%/3 @ 70% mhr with 2 min rest between pieces
Erg 1 60 min 3 x 20 min @ 18/20/22 spm, 70% mhr with 1 min rest between pieces
Erg 2 60 min 1 x 20 min @ 20, 65%mhr; 1 x 15 min @ 20/22/24/22/20, 75 – 85%mhr; 1 x 20 min @ 20, 65% mhr with 1 min rest after piece 1 and 4 minutes after piece 2


Transition Schedule

Day 1 Day 2 Day 3 Day 4 Day 5 Day 6 (bonus day)
Odd Weeks Abs 1 S 1 Abs 2 C 1 Abs 1 S 2 Abs 2 C 2 Abs 1 S 1 Abs 2 Erg 1
Even Weeks Abs 2 S 2 Abs 1 C 2 Abs 2 S 1 Abs 1 C 1 Abs 2 S 2 Abs 1 Erg 2


Technique Focus

The importance of posture cannot be overstated. It is absolutely required for safety and the effective transmission of force. Regarding safety, remember to create the “block” when engaged in all activities, especially lifting. The block is created by engaging abs, gluts, and chest muscles in a way that eliminates any tendency to sway or bend, which stabilizes the back and allows these muscles to assist in the primary exercise. “Sucking in” your bellybutton at the beginning of a repetition and exhaling your breath forcefully at the end of a repetition are excellent ways to help create your block.

The “set the boat” drill will be used as a tool for the rower to self evaluate the recovery and preparation phases of the stroke. It consists of the following 3 groups of 3 strokes:

Posture 1) sitting tall with “sit” bones on the back of the seat, chin up and chest open, 2) shoulders down, arm extended but relaxed, 3) knuckles of hand on top of handle, wrist flat, no “death “ grip.

Feet 1) landing equally on balls and heel of feet with weight increasing 2) heels down quickly at catch with power rapidly increasing, 3) drive finishing tall on balls of feet.

Handle height 1) down and away with level track at a steady height, 2) slight upwards move into catch with no dip or lunge, 3) level drive with the handle finishing around the second rib and not in the lap.


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