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Plowman Rows Competitively

Lily Harris

Willa Roberts, Staff Writer

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All it takes is a short walk across the street from Austin High to get to the Texas Rowing Center, where freshman Ella Plowman has been spending much of her time.

“I first started rowing back over the summer because I was interested in joining a competitive team,” Plowman said.

Plowman has been rowing for only six months, but has improved significantly and become obsessed with the sport.

“You get out of it what you put into it,” Plowman said. “If you don’t come consistently to rowing or don’t try your best at practice, you will not get better.”

Plowman practices four out of the five days practice is offered.

“I wanted to join a competitive team that was more rigorous because I like to be challenged when it comes to sports. I also liked the competition aspect,” Plowman said.

Having activities right after school can often interfere with homework and studying.

“Sometimes rowing and school conflict if I have a huge test or project due the next day, but practice is offered five times a week so staying home one day isn’t a big deal,” Plowman said. “Attendance is something I’ve learned to be very important. Showing up more often makes a large difference in your performance. You can only get better if you show up to practice as much as possible.”

Texas Rowing Center offers 5 days of practice every week, Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday and Saturday.

“It requires you to be strong both physically and mentally,” Plowman said. “Although you’re in a boat with others, your team is depending on you to row your hardest. To those who say rowing isn’t a serious sport, I’d tell them that I’d like to see them try, and then say that again truthfully.”

Rowing has typically the same routine every single day; however, there will be variation in what drills and pieces done on the water.

“A typical day at rowing always starts with a warm up run, followed by getting oars and setting them up on the dock,” Plowman said. “After that, our coach gives us our lineups, we get our boats in the water, get our oars in the oarlocks and tighten our feet in the straps. The majority of practice consists of a warm up on the water and then a different piece every day given to us by the coaches. Finally, we dock, put our boats away and usually end with a bodyweight circuit.”

On Mondays, Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Saturdays practice takes place on the water doing a variation of different drills and pieces. This can range from short two minute pieces to almost hour long pieces. On Friday, practice takes place on land where the rowers will either erg, (a machine that simulates the action of rowing), or running, usually about four miles along the trail.

“Rowing is sometimes stressful. Although it is a team sport, you are always competing against your teammates,” Plowman said. “However, after a long day at school, rowing is great way to take your mind off of things and de-stress. When you’re rowing your mind is completely focused on rowing which doesn’t allow any time to worry or be stressed, about school at least.”

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Plowman Rows Competitively