use­ful row­ing ter­mi­nol­ogy

The Field - - COOKERY -

Blade: the spoon-shaped end of an oar. Can be used to re­fer to the en­tire oar. Bow: the rower clos­est to the front end of the boat when it is mov­ing.

Bow side: left or star­board side (on the cox’s right as he or she looks up the boat).

Bumps race: boats chase each other in sin­gle file along a river and each crew tries to catch up with – and “bump” – the boat in front with­out be­ing caught first by the boat be­hind. (In Cam­bridge this re­quires con­tact while at Ox­ford they don’t phys­i­cally bump).

Catch­ing a crab: the oar gets caught in the wa­ter at the point of ex­trac­tion, which can have the ef­fect of bring­ing the boat to a halt and po­ten­tially

eject­ing the oars­man. Cox: from “Coxswain”, the per­son who steers the boat via wires at­tached to the rud­der and di­rects the crew.

Head race: a timed race where com­pet­ing crews row in a pro­ces­sion, gen­er­ally start­ing at 30 sec­ond in­ter­vals, with their fin­ish­ing times de­ter­min­ing

their plac­ing. In­duc­tion: gen­er­ally a course run over a num­ber of week­ends to give a novice an in­tro­duc­tion to row­ing; skills ac­quired should be suf­fi­cient to en­able them to take a seat in a novice eight. Rating: the num­ber of strokes rowed

in a minute. Regatta: a side-by-side com­pe­ti­tion in­volv­ing heats, semi-fi­nals and fi­nals for each event; boats com­pete from a stand­ing start.

Stroke side: right or port side (on the cox’s left as he or she looks up the boat).

Win­ning blades: at the end of four days of Bumps races a crew that has bumped,

or caught, the boat it is fol­low­ing in each race it has com­peted in will “win their blades”; mem­bers of the crew are

crowned with wil­low from the bank

For de­tails about Bri­tish Row­ing, call 020 8237 6700; www.britishrow­ For the River and Row­ing Mu­seum, Hen­ley, call 01491 415600 or go to

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