Athlete: Amber Crotty ’17
Hometown: Fruitport, MI
Major: Bio-medical Sciences
Woke up today around 6:30am to go on a quick jog along side the bay. Dense fog covered every part of Tampa, which at first was worrisome, but cleared pretty quickly. After my jog I stretched briefly for 10ish minutes and grabbed a bite to eat with my teammates. The coxswains walked down to practice about 20 minutes early to set up the erg-arm for Coach B’s “chalk talk”. The focus today was on the hands syncing together away from the body, the poise at the pivot and striking together at the catch. Our team was divided into two groups, one group went with Coach B while the other group went with Coach Allison and Coastas.
I coxed the Women’s Varsity 8 that followed Coach B. After a very productive row our group returned to the docks. The women were split into 4’s and we went out for a hour steady-state and technical row. After morning practice the team decided to hangout at the pool. Laying out in the sun and taking a dip in the pool felt amazing. The afternoon practice consisted of more steady-state rowing around the island in the bay. The varsity women’s 8 faced…. some hefty waves. If they can row in those conditions, they can row in anything.
Athlete: Zach Peters ’17
Hometown: Royal Oak, MI
Major: Finance and Marketing
Today the top eight men went out in fours. We started with a swing pick to quarter-slide warm-up to the front of the Tampa Convention Center where we usually meet before we start our practices in sunny Tampa Florida. Then we proceeded to do some skill and drill with emphasis on the recovery and a quick catch. The practiced then concluded with some bucket races next to a bunch of cruise liners. This practice was very productive and helped me learn that a quick catch starts from the body preparation.
After this we went back out on the water for a short fifty-minute row in pairs. Between practices we threw a tennis ball around by the pool and enjoyed a nap afterwards. The next practice we went out in fours for a short skill and drill row. We worked on the different stages of the recovery but mainly enjoyed a nice steady state row in the sun. When we got off the water we did three weight circuits. Tonight the team will be celebrating the New Year by enjoying some fireworks and each other’s company.
Athlete: Karissa Cloud ’19
Hometown: Ada, MI
Major: Diagnostic Medical Sonography
Poise, GatheRRRR, STRIKE!
Day three has started strong as we work on timing throughout our stroke. During our 8am chalk talk, Coach B explains how our actions at the beginning of the stroke will affect what happens at the end of the stroke, and vice versa. We split into two groups and were given lineups. As a coxswain I can work with either men or women and this morning I was practicing with a women’s eight. The other boats in my group with Coaches Allison and Costas were a men’s novice four and two varsity men’s pairs. We rowed south on the river toward the bay. Although we did not make it out to the bag, we turned and rowed past a cruise ship docked in its port. It look so much bigger in person on the water compared to seeing it while on land. After drill work to reinforce technique with timing and blade work, we head back to the dock for a quick water and snack break. A few lineups were switched but my eight was the same as we prepared to launch again for a quick row before lunch. This time, we rowed north into Tampa for 20 minutes and then were instructed to turn around. The water was choppy as motor boat travel increased, which made the row more… interesting. We all docked afloat and safe, thankful that it was time for lunch.
I got back to the hotel around 12 and went up to my room took a nap while most had gone to the pool to cool off. Our afternoon practice was at 3 so I left my room to walk down with some of the varsity girls at 2:30. We arrive at the site and the varsity were put into their same line-ups for a shorter row on the water. Novice stayed on land to do their erg work out that the varsity completed yesterday, 3×4000 meters. I was placed in a boat with men and I was happy to have been given the chance to work with both men and women today. We rowed south toward the bay but turned and rowed again past the same cruise ship we had seen earlier. This time, we could see people and waved as we had rowed by. It felt lengthy but was a fun row to get in the mileage. After docking and washing the boat and oars off, I went to the ergs to help cheer on the novice as they were half way through their pieces. I stayed with them until the end and got back to my room at about 5:30. People now are going between rooms, girls asking about their outfits and doing hair after their showers as we dress up for a fun night out to celebrate the New Year! Everyone is excited to eat and see the fireworks as we kick off the start to 2016. I am so happy and excited to be celebrating with this wonderful team I get to call my family during the holiday!