After a significantly better summer on the water than the previous year, rowers at Whitby’s Friendship Rowing Club are set to start their winter fitness and conditioning programme in preparation for the 2014 season.
With their state-of-the-art gym now fully functioning, organisers are hoping for a repeat of the turnout seen during the last of-season.
Steve Wilson, the club’s performance director, was in optimistic mood.
“We learnt a lot from last winter’s experience,” he said, “not least in how to manage up to 40 people ranging from 10 to 60 years of age who turned up each night.
“We also felt we started it all a bit too soon after the rowing season ended, so by leaving it till the start of December we hope everyone will be refreshed and raring to go.”
The programme will once again be designed by David Beck, who was recently appointed the overall coaching co-ordinator at the ambitious Scarborough Rugby Club.
“The off season is all about maintaining core fitness levels and developing sport-specific muscle groups so that when training proper starts, folk are fit for purpose,” he said.
“There was a feeling that many people confused fitness conditioning with training last year, resulting in a few crews peaking at the wrong times.”
President of the club, Mike Brown, was enthusiastic about the benefits.
As he explained: “In 2012 we only won one race at Whitby Regatta.
“This summer, we won six, so it shows the advantages of a proper fitness programme.
“With the lessons learned, we hope to go even better in 2014. Dave has a vast experience in the sporting field, and the numbers attending showed that training was enjoyable as well as beneficial”.
The club enjoys an air conditioned gym, nine rowing machines, two skier machines and a full range of free weights available. Training sessions are on Monday and Thursday nights at the Friendship club.
Under 16s start at 5.30pm, and adults at 6pm. New members are welcome.