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Key tips to Master the Art of Coxing

Key tips to Master the Art of Coxing

When you get to your first regatta you may be a little overwhelmed (this is normal).  Use the checklist below to make sure you are prepared and do not miss anything, and check out the videos below so you are fully prepared for what to expect on race day!

Regatta Coxswain Checklist

    • Charge your coxbox
    • Know how to Rig and de-rig your boat (so you can check that your crew is doing it right)
    • Watch the how to rig and de-rig videos here
    • Have a race schedule
    • Know when and where the coxswain meeting is (its usually really early!)
    • Let your crew know when they need to meet and where to get warmed up and hands on the boat
    • Know your race plan from your coach and make sure your crew knows it
    • Get a map, or at least know the traffic flow on the water and where the launch and recovery docks are
    • Have an on the water warm up plan, and know exactly what time you have to be locked on to your stake boat
    • Know how to back your boat into a stakeboat and how to get your point (scull it around)
    • Watch “How to be a stakeboat Holder” to understand how they expect you to approach the stakeboat
    • Know what lane you are in and make sure you have a bow number firmly attached!
    • Check your heel ties and bow ball for proper setup (they will check this prior to you launching and will not let you launch if the heels of the shoes are not tied to the footstretcher and the bowball isn’t secure to the boat)
    • Know how the start line works (i.e. raising your hand and bow seats hand when you are not ready to start)
    • Know how to protest at the end of a race if you feel part of the race was unfair (you must notify an official immediately after the race and before leaving the finishing area you want to protest, DO NOT leave the finish area if you want to protest until you have spoken to a Referee in a launch.  (Best thing to do is just raise your hand, and have your crew also raise their hands, if able once you have crossed the finish line and keep your hands up until someone comes over to you).
    • And ALWAYS know where you are on the rowing course (i.e. are you 750m to go or 1250m to go?)
You can also check out this helpful race procedures overview from US Rowing here



Credit: Jon Kotwicki, RowINTEL

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