No Jacket Required

The Royal Henley Regatta allowed gentlemen to remove their jackets today because of the heat, but ties and cravats are still required in the Stewards Enclosure. I’m dressed in layers of clothes in front of the fire in a cottage in northern Michigan, in between rows on a gray chilly day. We’re told we should see the sun this afternoon and temperatures in the seventies by tomorrow. All is right with the world.

We‘re just finishing two weeks of what has become our perfect vacation – sculling camp. What more can a rower ask for? On the water three times a day, meals prepared and waiting for you when you get off the water, and even an afternoon nap. Evenings watching the sun set over the lake around a campfire telling regatta stories and if you’re lucky, a sighting of the northern lights. There’s even enough free time to explore the surrounding area and its tourist sites, restaurants, wineries, breweries, distilleries… But I digress…

We’ve been campers and coaches at Black Bear for a number of years now, and there are many other camps and clinics out there too that I’m certain will give you a similar experience. I always come away from camp with something to make me a better rower and coach and a new energy about this sport.

Sometimes it’s a coach just using a different word or gesture than the way you’ve heard it explained before that can be the “Aha!” you need to make a change in how your body takes the stroke. Or you’ve grown enough in your rowing knowledge that the same language, repeated another time (or many times) finally clicks. Often it’s just a different voice that makes the difference. The same works for coaches as we look for a better way to verbalize what we want to see, take the time to talk to rowers who are asking detailed questions that help us refine our ideas, and hang out with other coaches and rowers to learn how their programs are run.

I’m looking forward to taking this summer’s learning home and putting it into practice!









Welcome to our new website!

Welcome to our new website!

RowKraft has been operating in the background of our lives for a number of years, as Tom developed, sourced, assembled and sold KraftLights while he worked full-time in the horticulture industry and was a high school head coach. After a couple of changes in job opportunities for both of us in the past six months we’re making the leap to All Rowing All The Time!

Last weekend was the final regatta for my novices and all of them won at least one medal! With 25 girls, it’s the largest novice squad I’ve coached. We had our last practice this week, mixing in with varsity rowers, and I was thrilled to see how well they fit in with the experienced girls. As they move on it will be fun to watch them as they continue to figure out how hard they can work.

A few months of hard work on this site was interrupted by the spring high school rowing season. Now that it has ended, our web designer, Linette of Invisible Engines, (as well as another web designer Tom met in a bar in Chicago!) urged us to stop tinkering and just get it up and running, so here we are with the new RowKraft website!

In addition to our own Beacon navigation lights, we’re offering products to make life easier for the rowing community. We began with Stazo’s SmartLock, the best outboard motor lock we’ve found, and then added Mustang Survival PFD’s and some handy accessories from Nite-Ize. We’ll continue to search out useful tools and fun accessories. Let us know if there’s something you’d like to see us carry.