I haven’t been in a sweep oar boat for at least 3 years now. I stopped “rowing” and switched to sculling when it continuously hurt my back. Some of that was most likely down to bad technique on my part, some down to being in unstable boats/crews. So, I switched to sculling as there was no leaning involved, I could keep my back straight and greatly reduce the stress being placed on it.
Anyway, since my back is now much less painful and much stronger (thanks to many chiropractic sessions). When given the chance to have another go at sweep oar again I took it. The decision was easy because it was a purely technical session. “Not a firm stroke” is what the coach said.
It was certainly odd getting in the boat, I was rowing stroke side so had nothing other than the boat to hold on to while getting in and pushing off from the landing stage. It was even odder just having the one blade to worry about!
It didn’t take too long before it all started to come back to me, mainly based on past mistakes!
After the session (about 90 minutes) I could definitely feel it in my lower back much more than I would with sculling, but nothing a few stretches hasn’t sorted out. I will definitely take the oportunity to get in a sweep boat again for a few more technical outings. But, I’m a way off being able to put any power down.