Row Row Row Your Boat

May 14, 2010
Ever since my freshman year I’ve fallen in love with my life, in other words I’ve fallen in love with the adrenaline filled sport that has taken over my life. CREW.

Crew has been my life all spring, summer, fall and winter for the past 4 years and it will become my future for numerous years to come. Crew is not just an activity or a game for me but an emotion- filled, life-encouraging obsession. A rower creates many goals and thoughts in the mind; we are unique when it comes to strategy, focus and determination. Being strategic in a way that you can save the energy and the strength to push yourself through the intense, competitive and passionate moments makes one special. I could not have seen myself being so motivated to run that 5 miles for warm up everyday before crew entered my life, but the need and want for success captures me like a wave and takes me out to sea, I just keep going and don’t turn back. This mindset of a rower comprises of hard work, inspiration and success. It’s a step by step process. One shall claim success after the inspiration to do so, and the hard work that’s put into in, from the beginning to the end.

Here it is, race day! New York State Championships! Pumped and nervous for the two thousand meters we have to show we deserve that first place medal. Seeing so many people, not knowing who you will compete with and who will win, just keeping that friendly smile on your face. Time is flying by, as it comes to the moment to meet with coach for pep talk and your heart starts to beat fast. Just standing there, waiting on the dock to put your boat into the water, to lock in your oars and get going stirs up so much passion and many thoughts. Not knowing what to think when you’re heading off as your coach yells good luck and everyone cheering for you. Then warming up and rowing along side the race course, giving you those fluttering butterflies in your stomach. There you are at the beginning of the race, lining up with all the other competitors as they sit in disguise. You have no clue how they will row and if they will beat you. The need of victory erupts when you set and everyone becomes still waiting for the

‘READY! ATTENTION! ROW!’

Now the race is on! The quick start has begun and I yell half, half, three-quarters, full… Power ten! The fight arrives now when you confront a hole- an abyss of pain, which opens up in the second minute of the race. Facing the inevitable pain of your forearms splitting and the large needles being driven into your thighs, the pain becomes confused and disorganized. Not like a leg burn of a biker or the windedness of a runner but an all-over, savage unpleasantness. As you pass the five-hundred meter mark, with three- fourths of the race still to row, you realize with dread that you are not going to make it to the finish, but at the same time the idea of letting you teammates down by not rowing your hardest is unthinkable. Reaching the last two-hundred and fifty meters left, everyone’s sprinting it out and giving all that you have left to pass those boats that are fighting by your side. Looking to your right. Looking to your left. Bearing in mind the glances of the bowman look into your eyes with competitiveness breaking out, everyone’s taking advantage of the last thirty strokes to make a difference; we’re driving down to move ahead that one good inch, every pull, to get passed that finish line first. Hearing everyone yell and scream builds up the adrenaline again and there was no way I was loosing this race. All six boats even in line as my boat tip toes ahead of the others, shouting in agony and pain... ‘BEEP’ the blaring horn ends the race and the feeling of victory inside is indescribable. A smile is glued to my face and passing the high five down the boat I realize winning that race made that two thousand meter race feel so effortless.
Crew is not only a sport for me, but it’s my life, and it definitely satisfies me significantly. Being reminded that I was a State champion and I was racing in nationals was a dream come true. All my years of hard work and success have come to the peak, resulting in an accomplishment of a lifetime. I take pride in what I do which helps me battle life on the front line.

Crew is not only about the physical and mental state of mind in a race, but it’s also about the relationship you gain with your team and the effect of teamwork. Rowers spend so much time with one another, there’s a strong family connection that forms and can never be torn down; it’s heartening. Teamwork is an important aspect of crew especially because although there are single boats you can row, ninety percent of the time your boat involves other people. I’m not ‘just rowing’ with them, but you are working extremely hard to be the best, individually and mutually. It’s almost as if you’re rowing as one person with swing and connection in every force and drive that I could never let them down by not rowing to the fullest everyday. The bond that’s created within your boat is also one that can never be torn down but one that is unstoppable, confident and reassuring. I practice strong everyday in and out and benefit from ending the day feeling proud. Knowing I am improving everyday and having a superior attitude keeps me in it to win it.





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Ms. D said...
Jun. 7, 2010 at 2:44 pm
I have never been participated in crew, but reading this piece makes me feel like I have!
 
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