A one day Canada Games Identification Camp was held on January 16 in London hosted by the University of Western Ontario and the London Rowing Club. Athletes from the University of Western Ontario, University of Guelph and the London Rowing Club attended the camp between 8:30am and 3:00pm. “It was a great opportunity to promote the Canada Games program and meet new athletes to the sport” said Mike Purcer, Technical Director, ROWONTARIO.
The day started at the University of Western Ontario with a get-together where athletes and coaches met and the day’s Camp activities were outlined. The first session was a presentation by Mike Purcer, on the Five Essentials of Technique that set the tone for the day. Coach Matt Waddell led the athletes through a dynamic warm-up. The first ergometer session was review of each athlete’s rowing technique and all athletes were videoed on iPads. The athletes were able to watch their technique in slow and stop motion while coaches highlighted the five essential movements and outline the modifications needed. The ergometer session finished off with athletes completing a max watts erg to evaluate power. During a break in training athletes and coaches had a chance to learn about the Games as Andre Pelletier and Aaron Kirkey spoke to the group about their experiences at the 2013 Canada Games held in Sherbrook Quebec.
The afternoon was spent at the London Rowing Club training facility on Wonderland Road where athletes took advantage of the indoor rowing tank as well as another session on the ergs. The London RC rowing tank provided the opportunity to further develop the technical skills that were highlighted in the morning. “The rowing tank is a big step closer to being on the water and we wanted to further develop the five essentials of technique integrating bladekwork” said Mike Purcer. Video provided another opportunity for coaches and athletes to monitor and modify rowing technique. Following a short break athletes were back on the ergs to demonstrate their fitness as they completed five, three minute pieces with controlled stroke rates.
A short wrap-up by Mike Purcer outlined future Canada Games program planning and upcoming RADAR requirements. Athletes were informed that they would receive a copy of the erg performance results and receive access to the ROWONTARIO Canada Games internet site. Mike finished by thanking the athletes for their participation and commitment to the day and then thanked coaches Matt Waddell, Dave Leger, John Bullen that committed their day to the camp. Finally Mike led the group in “A BIG THANKS” to the London RC and UWO clubs for their hospitality in hosting the Camp.