The RowPerfects at Thames RC are, in part, owned by the Club and in part (the majority) owned personally by Chris George or, in one case, a trust he runs. Use is restricted to authorised users at various different levels. There are key points that club members, coaches and others need to appreciate. Over the last decade I have been the allocated administrator in charge of the machines and I have paid for their maintenance personally in many cases. Consequently, I take a personal interest in making sure the machines are looked after.
- These are to teach people to row and are rowing simulators obeying Newton’s Third Law and that is not the same as a fixed head ergometer.
- They are easily damaged by careless use and must not be moved by unauthorised persons for fear of damaging the flywheel shaft which costs £120 plus to replace. there are notices to this effect under the machines but despite that people (mainly coaches) have been tempted to move them in the past.
- The rail must be kept clean on all four surfaces top, bottom and two sides
- You must log on and report on its condition before the session or you may be liable for damage caused by others
- There are no foot straps to hold the feet in and the heel straps should be below the bottom line of the foot board unless you have very small feet. I regularly have to keep changing them back after some thoughtless person has raised them right up effectively making the machine unlike a boat. The heel straps should be low as possible for big people and never above the wood
- the bungie cord (shock cord) should be stored slack so the handle fully home to the bogie not in the two prongs. They are regularly left on the prongs wrongly. Ben and I regularly note this and put them back.
- This is a rowing simulator. There are two moving masses – you and the bogey acting as your boat. You are on a seat as in a boat – the bogey on a rail (the water). It acts very similarly to a sculler so treat is as a sculler! Row as if you had square blades with and hands down and away action at the finish and hands up (blade enters water) at the catch. Aim for an orange shape each end – Absent that, you might as well go back to a fixed head machine for all the good it will do your skill development.
If you wish to use the machines please bear this in mind. Your use of them depends on you respecting the guidelines and rules yourself and on you ensuring your co-users equally respect them. If a quiet word with someone who has failed to clean up after use or has failed to sign in first has no effect you are under duty by this agreement to let me or the coach in charge know.
There are four levels of users/coaches, the fourth being me!
User Level 1
Only to use the machines under the aegis of a qualified RP Level 2 coach/ user and responsibility of that session falls on the coach/user to ensure that the machines are used properly and signed off and clean. Liability for failure to do lies with the coach. Level 1 users are generally novices but may equally be seniors particularly if they think they know it all. To be a L1 user you need to have had a simple induction programme from a coach as above and to have sent and received a confirmation of the terms and conditions of use. See this link [T and C use] . The current list of L1 users is here. [link]
User Level 2
To be a L2 user you need to have done sufficient time on the machine (say 10 hours if you are novice rower) to demonstrate that you can use it safety and to be able to run the software in accordance with the instructions on this page [link to software page instructions]
Someone who can maintain the machines and has shown, over a period of time, sufficient leadership skills and cooperative skills to convince me that he can act in loco parentis of me! This list is not long. NGH, Jono Longridge, Claire Allen and S Dooley are current candidates.