Rowing – The Equipment Involved

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The prime equipment that is involved in the sport of Rowing is the racing boats. These are also known by the name of shells. The shape of these boats is generally long and the size of these boats is narrow. In cross-section, the shape of the boats is semi-circular when evaluated in a broader sense. The objective of this semi-circular shape is to ensure that drag of the boats can be reduced to a basic minimum. At the rear side of the boats, there is a fin present. The objective of this fin is to ensure the prevention of the roll. It is also helpful in increasing the rudder effectiveness.

In the earlier times, the shells or racing boats were made up of wood; however, with time changes have taken place in the different aspects of the sport and also with respect to the material of the racing boats. In the present times, the boats or the shells are made up of a composite material. The objective of using this material is to impart a greater strength to the boats and also extend the advantage of the weight. This composite material actually refers to plastic which has been reinforced with carbon-fibre.

There are different classes of boats and for each class of boat; a minimum weight has been specified by FISA. This has been ensured so that no specific advantage is passed on to any individual because of a particular technology used or because of the use of expensive materials. Different types of boats have been classified. The classification of the different boats has been based on some defined parameters. These include the total number of rowers and the exact position of the coxswain. In the contemporary competitions of rowing, the total number of rowers is 1, 2, 4 or 8. The exact position of the coxswain is important as some of the boats are bow-coxed while the others are coxless.

The boats used for different forms of rowing are generally the same that is used for Sweep and Sculling. However, the boats used for these two forms definitely differ in terms of having different riggers. The names given to these boats are still different. The examples of the different boats that are used for sweep form of rowing include coxed pair and coxless pair. The examples of the different names of the boats that are used for sculling form of rowing are single scull, double scull or quad scull. The examples of the boats that are used combinely for both sweep as well as sculling forms include Randan, Queep, among others.

In order to ensure that the lightweight boats can be produced for sculling, specialized versions are being produced that are generally small in size. The function of riggers in sculling is that symmetrical forces are possible to result on each of the sides of the boat while in case of sweep form of rowing; riggers generally result in staggered forces. It is because of this reason that greater efficiency is associated with sculling than is associated with the sweep form of rowing. It is also possible to make adjustments to the equipment involved in rowing based on the different traits of the rowers.

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