British Rowing |

High Quality Land Training: Movement development exercises

These three exercises will help rowers develop the movement range and control needed to row a technically effective stroke described in our article High Quality Land Training (Part 1): Movement.

“Focus on being still and controlled,” says Dan Harris, GB Senior Start Coach.

1 – One leg balance

  • Stand on one leg with your eyes closed.
  • Slowly move your knee up and down.
woman standing on one leg with other knee raised

2 – Seated leg raises

  • Sit on a box, or a Swiss ball.
  • Lift one foot a couple of inches off the floor and lower, and repeat on the other foot, alternating back and forth.
  • Try to avoid any significant movement in the hips and lower back.
seated leg raise exercise

3 – Arm/leg raises also known as ‘Supermans’

  • Start in a four point kneeling position with a flat back and relaxed shoulders.
  • Lift a combination of opposite arm and leg (either separately or together) without any change in trunk or back position.
Arm and leg raise exercise

Alice’s top tips

GB Rowing Team member Alice Baatz, who is demonstrating these exercises in the photos above, taken in 2019, says: “If you do mobility and conditioning exercises then you’ll build up good tone in your body and you’ll strengthen the connections between your muscles. I need to do a lot of trunk work so the Supermans are very useful for controlling your movement while I’m stabilising through my trunk.

“When I first started, just watching what other people were doing was very useful for me. If there are more advanced people than you, then observe what they are doing because that will be a very good learning tool. But also just ask them what exercise they’re doing for upper body strength or whatever you’re interested in doing.”

Thanks to Alice Baatz for demonstrating these exercises and Lee Smith at EIS for his technical expertise.

Photos: Dianna Bonner.