Winter Schedule

The winter workout schedule will begin on Monday, November 1. It will be as follows:

Mondays, 6:30, at Millvale - we may or may not have access to the regular ergs, but we can do an ab/weight workout and use the paddling ergs. The regular ergs are reserved for teams using the tanks.

Thursdays, 7:00, at Washington's Landing - we have the ergs reserved from 7:00-8:00. I hope that we can start at 6:30 with an ab/weight workout.

Saturday, 9:00, at Millvale - we have the tanks reserved from 9:00 to 10:00. We will probably focus on technique in the tanks and strength and endurance on the ergs.

I will update this posting as additional information becomes available. Good weather trumps indoor practice: We will be on the water if possible.


Tale of the Channel

All TRRA members, Dragon boat festival paddlers, and friends are invited for
Tale of the Channel – An informal dragon boat event

9 am ....... Saturday November 6, Millvale
RSVP benledewitz@threeriversrowing.org

All Paddlefish are required to attend this event; other than that the rules are up in the air. Two captains will be strategically mis-chosen to pick up teams from the crowd of experienced and inexperienced paddlers vying for some kind of award at the end of the day. 200 meter races (or there abouts) will be held in succession with periodic stops at the docks to re-organize (or dis-organize) and of course take a break from paddling and laughing.

This is not anything goes, as rules are rules and must be abided by. Weather at this point in the year is variable, dress accordingly but given a half decent day the event is on. Bring your favorite food to share for munching during or after the event. (Clothes must be worn, but left over Halloween costumes may come in handy.)

A recital of events or happenings; a report or revelation: told us a long tale of woe.
A malicious story, piece of gossip, or petty complaint.
A deliberate lie; a falsehood.
A narrative of real or imaginary events; a story.

1. The posterior part of a dragon, or dragon boat.

- Ben


Paddle Cheers!

Yesterday's festival was a great way to close the season. How 'bout those times?!!!!!

We've come a loooong way since the beginning of the season and our race in DC. Let's get together on the 11th and talk about what we need to do to continue to move forward together and grow even stronger.

Reminder: No practice Monday and Wednesday this week. Next practice is Saturday, October 30.


Festival News

Saturday's race schedule will be posted on the race site some time today. There may be changes after this initial post, but you'll get some sense of what the scope of the day looks like.

We'll need to rotate paddlers in and out of the boat for the various heats so that we stay strong and so that we have some Paddlefish available to drum and steer for the community teams! I'll work on that after the schedule is out and will send individual emails to people to ask for drumming/steering help.

Pauline news: the good news is that the company Pauline's consulting for likes her work and is taking her ideas seriously; the bad news is that they want her in Europe till next week. She is very disappointed that she'll be missing the festival!

On a happier note: Let's get together at Red Fin Blues after the festival (around 6 or so) to celebrate the day and the season! Lisa and Carolyn have talked to the owners, so they know we're coming. (Yet another opportunity for Jack and Chuck to borrow a sports bra and tuck a little money in there.....)


News on Paddlefish

From the New Scientist, 25th September 2004 --

Russell and co-workers at the University of Missouri, St. Louis, studied the feeding behaviour of paddlefish, which hunt plankton by detecting the electric fields the plankton emit.

And I thought it was either eggs or pancakes (unless of course you're Bob,who has both)!!!


This Week's Update

Sorry about the date on the emailed update! The one you got today was indeed the update FOR today, not for October 8th!

1. To the best of my knowledge, only three teams have asked for practice time before next Saturday’s race: Perkins Eastman, Data Angels, and Venture Outdoors. PE and Data Angels are practicing this Sunday at 1:00 PM. Lori, Dick, Lisa, and Chuck or Carolyn are on tap to drum and steer as needed; PE and Data Angels may combine forces for one boat.

Venture Outdoors is practicing (one boat) this Thursday evening at 6:30. Laurie is drumming; Bruce is steering.

At this time, I know of no other novice teams who have asked for practice time for this weekend, so I think it’s fair to assume that we won’t need any other P’fish volunteers for Saturday (10/16) or Sunday (10/17). Many thanks to all of you who so willingly were on standby!

2. Ben has sent out an email re next weekend’s festival. A meeting about the festival will be held on Tuesday (Millvale, 7 PM), and volunteers are needed Thursday (Washington’s Landing, 6-8 PM). Contact Ben if you can be there for either.

On Saturday, there will be TRRA learn-to-row/learn-to-kayak events in the morning, starting at 9 AM; the festival activities will begin at 11.

The complete schedule for the day is not yet set, but it does look like there will be a lot of the cultural activities originally scheduled for the South Side festival in September, and Lori Miller is coordinating a Paddlefish tent with information for people who may be interested in learning more about us/dragonboating. Please let Lori know if you’re able to help her out with that!

3. Not-quite-everyone has replied to Chuck so far re their ability to paddle in next Saturday’s festival. Let Chuck know if the list needs to be updated for you.

4. Our first annual meeting was held last November: we socialized, set goals, and had a beer or two. This year’s meeting is being tentatively scheduled for November 11th, with specific time and place to be determined. More info will be posted on the blog as it comes in – if you have preferences/suggestions, please let Chuck, Lisa, or me know.

Faults in Rowing, Circa 1881

The list below was published in an 1881 general Home Cyclopedia (everything from how to cure catarrh -- a cold -- to how to care for canaries). Next time we're doing straight-arm drills, maybe we can take some comfort in knowing that people have been scolded about keeping straight arms on the river for centuries.... (And check out #19 -- they must have had some bird-watchers then, too!)

Faults in Rowing.

The above laws are sinned against when the rower

1. Does not straighten both arms before him.

2. Keeps two convex wrists instead of the outside wrist flat.

3. Contrives to put his hands forward by a subsequent motion after the shoulders have attained their reach, which is getting the body forward without the arms.

4. Extends the arms without a corresponding bend on the part of the shoulders, which is getting the arms forward without the body.

5. Catches the water with unstraightened arms or arm, and a slackened tension as its consequence; thus time may be kept, but not stroke; keeping stroke always implying uniformity of work.

6. Hangs before dipping downwards to begin the stroke.

7. Does not cover the blade up to the shoulder.

8. Rows round and deep in the middle, with hands high and blade still sunken after the first contact.

9. Curves his back forward or aft.

10. Keeps one shoulder higher than the other.

11. Jerks.

12. Doubles forward and bends over the oar at the feather, bringing the body up to the handle and not the handle up to the body.

13. Strikes the water at an obtuse angle, or rows the first part in the air.

14. Cuts short the end, prematurely slackening the arms.

15. Shivers out the feather, commencing it too soon and bringing the blade into a plane with the water while work may yet be done; thus the oar leaves the water in perfect time, but stroke is not kept. This and No. 5 are the most subtle faults in rowing, and involve the science of shirking.

16. Rolls backward, with an inclination towards the inside or outside of the boat.

17. Turns his elbows at the feather instead of bringing them sharp past the flanks.

18. Keeps the head depressed between the shoulders instead of erect.

19. Looks out of the boat instead of straight before him. (This almost inevitably rolls the boat.)

20. Throws up the water instead of turning it well aft off the lower angle of the blade. A wave thus created is extremely annoying to the oar further aft; there should be no wave travelling astern, but an eddy containing two small circling swirls.


Commitment to Race on the 23rd

Just a quick reminder that if you have not yet done so you need to let Chuck know now whether or not you can race in the festival on the 23rd.



Volunteers for Novice Practices

We still don't know which (or how many) novice teams will take us up on the offer to practice this weekend and next, but, in the meantime, would you please post here if you are available to either steer or drum for a novice team practice this weekend and/or next weekend?

General reminders: the practices will be held at Saturday and Sunday, at 1:00 and 3:00. Each practice will last approximately 90 minutes; we'll run two teams at a time. (So that's 4 teams per day -- two boats going out at 1:00, two going out at 3:00.) I can't promise that you'll be able to be matched up with the team you had practiced with earlier. At this point, the greatest need is just to give these teams a chance to get out on the water with some instruction.

Please post here if you CAN volunteer to either drum or steer for these times:

Saturday (October 9) at 1:00; Saturday (October 9) at 3:00; Sunday (October 10) at 1:00; Sunday (October 10) at 3:00.

Saturday (October 16) at 1:00; Saturday (October 16) at 3:00; Sunday (October 17) at 1:00; Sunday (October 17) at 3:00.



This Week's Update

1. Practices:

No official team practice this weekend. We'll see how Sunday looks and may get in a short paddling practice during or after the Open House. Do try to get in a workout this weekend: about 45 minutes of cardio, some abs, some weights.

Please try to attend practice as often as possible this month. I know many of us had made plans for some of these October practice dates when we thought that the race season would be over by now, but please do come to practice as often as you can -- we need the full-boat practices to be ready for the 23rd!

People who come to the Open House or to Rock 'n' Row will be invited to join us for practices on October 4 and October 11 (both Mondays); it would be great to have a large turnout of P'fish on those days to welcome new paddlers.

2. HOTO/Rock 'n' Row:

Lori S., Lisa, Jack, Stef, Chris, Diana, Kit, and Chuck are staffing the dragon boats at Rock 'n' Row tomorrow. One boat will be on the Roberto Clemente Bridge to attract attention and be a site of info about dragon-boating; the other boat will be in the water by the Science Center, where people will be able to go out for a paddle. Free parking is available at Heinz Field's Gold Lot 4.

We're meeting at the Science Center boat at 11:45 tomorrow morning -- please join us if you can, even if it's just for an hour or so. The more the merrier!

3. Open House:

The Open House (AKA This-Month's-Excuse-to-Eat-Kathi's-Bean-Dip) is this weekend at Millvale -- Sunday from noon until 3. Please let Lisa know if you are coming, and let her know if you're bringing some friends (again, the more the merrier!).

Will someone have a camera?

4. October 23rd: Festival/Races

The DC Dragons plan to join us -- hurrah!

We need a good count of who will be in town to paddle for the races on October 23rd. If you haven't already done so, please let Chuck know your availability (lyoncw@pitt.edu).

HOTO has absorbed much of everyone's attention this past week, so the commitment of novice teams to practice on the weekends (October 9th/10th and October 16th/17th) is still a bit squishy. I'll let everyone know when things get more definite.