Wolfson College Boat Club

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It's about sports. It's about socialising.
But there's more to it.

Rowing

Coxing

It's passion. Be part of something special.

Blade

The oar.

As in 'to win blades': to bump on all four days in either Lents or Mays.

 

Bow

Front part of the boat.

Also: Rower closest to the bow of the boat (theoretically number 1).

 

Bow Four

The four rowers closest to the bow of the boat (bow, 2, 3 and 4).

 

Bow Pair

The two rowers closest to the bow of the boat (bow and 2). Movements of the boats as well as waves are more pronounced here, requiring these rowers to have sound technique. In addition, they pay especially close attention to the cox, as they'll be the ones to correct the boat's heading before the whole crew starts rowing - and they line up the boat before the start of races!

 

Bowside

Right-hand side of the boat in direction of travels. Rowers sit backwards in the boat, so bowside is to their left side.

 

Bumps

The biggest event in the rowing calendar. It happens twice a year: Lent Bumps and May Bumps, the latter being the more important one.

 

Cox (short for: coxswain)

The cox steers the boat, motivates and encourages the crew, keeps them informed about the race progress, and makes any necessary strategic calls. He or she sits in the back of the boat and is the only person facing the direction of motion. Some faster racing IVs are 'bowloaders', meaning the cox is lying in front of the rowers instead of sitting at the back.

 

Eight

See 'VIII'.

 

Four

See 'IV'.

 

IV

A 'four' - a rowing boat with four rowers. Usually, there's also a cox in the boat, making it a 'IV+' or 'coxed four' (as opposed to a 'coxless four').

 

Lents

Lent Bumps, taking place over five days (4 races + 1 rest day for every division) towards the end of Lent Term.

 

Mays

May Bumps, taking place over four days at the end of Easter Term, usually after exams, but before May Week (... in June).

 

Novices

Rowers that haven't participated in Bumps yet.

 

Power House

Middle four rowers in an VIII, middle two rowers in an IV. Because unwanted movements of the boats are less noticeable here, these positions are slightly easier to row, allowing the rowers to push harder. Usually occupied by the strongest crew members.

 

Sculling

Each rower has two blades, much like in a traditional small rowing boat one might see on lakes.

 

Stern

Rear part of the boat.

 

Stern Four

The four rowers closest to the stern of the boat (5, 6, 7 and stroke).

 

Stern Pair

The two rowers closest to the stern of the boat (7 and stroke). In an VIII, they have to be able to set and hold a rhythm for the whole boat, requiring sound technique.

 

Stroke

Rower closest to the stern of the boat (theoretically number 8), right in front of the cox. Stroke sets the rhythm for the whole crew.

 

Strokeside

Left-hand side of the boat in direction of travels. Rowers sit backwards in the boat, so strokeside is to their right side.

 

Sweep-rowing

Each rower has one blade, going out either to bowside or strokeside.

 

VIII

An 'eight' - a rowing boat with eight rowers and a cox.