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Saturday, June 7, 2014

HAPPY NATIONAL LEARN TO ROW DAY!

 That's right, Rowing has its own national holiday.  Rowing, as Big Coach is fond of saying, is a sport for life.

            What he means by that is, there are a few sports you can enjoy way beyond your competitive athlete years. Swimming is one, and tennis and basketball can be enjoyed for quite a while.  Competitive rowing is for the youth rowers and the adults who continue to have the competitive spirit.  Today’s blog is not about competitive rowing but about the sheer joy of Recreational Rowing, and how the whole community, and people of all ages, can get in on the action.
Recreational rowing is one of the hidden gems of the Hudson Valley.  In fact, Hudson Valley Magazine just did a feature story on this very topic, featuring the Hudson River Rowing Association in Poughkeepsie and the Newburgh Rowing Club.  I really look forward to Tuesdays and Thursdays, from 5:30 pm – 7:30 pm because I know Michael and I will both be at Recreational Rowing. 
My rowing BFF, Kathe, and I like to get out in a double crew shell.  As we like to say, we have one gear:  Drive.  Backing up, turning, docking -- these are skills we learned last summer and then promptly forgot over the winter as we took to the indoor rowing machines.  But that’s OK, since there are always coaches out on the water in motorboats, reminding the recreational rowers what to do.
            As Coach Cunningham would say:  Everything is Better on the Water.  There is something about being out on the water, be it the mighty Hudson River or wherever you happen to live that may have a rowing club.  When everything is clicking just right and you are moving along in a crew shell, there is only one word I can think of to describe it:  fun.  I think each row come out to $3.75 per hour on the water.  Imagine having fun for less than $4.00 per hour, no hangover involved, with your kids right next to you.  Rowing is also phenomenal exercise, I have never been in better shape in my life, at age 48, almost 49.  And the beauty of rowing into a Hudson River sunset, well, it’s indescribable.  It’s like being a school age kid all over again, because once we get out there, we never want to come back in. “Time to bring it in,” Coach Fernandez, our 20-something coach will say to as he pulls his motorboat up to us. 
“Already?” we say, feigning shock. 
“Is this what it’s like to be a parent?” our coach will joke.
“Yes, coach,” we say, “this is just like parenting, you’re doing great, we will be right in.  Can we have just a few more minutes of watching this sunset?”
“Next time, ladies,” says our coach.  “There’s always Thursday night.”
“OK, coach,” we say.  And we row, as slowly as possible, back to the docks, because there is no better place to watch a Hudson River sunset than in the middle of the Hudson River.
The rowers and coaches of the Newburgh Rowing Club will be down at the Newburgh waterfront with ergometers – indoor rowing machines – for free “Learn to Row” lessons from 9 am to 12 pm.   Join us, or find a Learn to Row event in your area by visiting www.USRowing.org.
Have a great day, everyone and, as always, Remember to Count Your Blessings! <3 Mrs. Lo
For more of the Mrs. Lo Blog visit www.lobiondopage.blogspot.com