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Exploring the physiological effects of completing a 2k test

It is a strange thing to move to the starting line with purpose. You feel the inevitable rush of self-doubt and regret, knowing what is to come in just a few moments. Paradoxically the draw to the race, the excitement in the prospect of victory, narrows your focus until you barely remember the world outside these six lanes. To your left and right the other crews begin to align themselves for the start. You know what you would see, if you cared to look in their faces, which must be mirroring your own apprehensive anticipation. Directly ahead and behind you sit the rest of your crew. Each of them having done the work to equal your own, each of them having steeled their bodies through months of agonizing training for this very moment. With your adversaries so close and your support even closer, the air is thick with competition. Your coxswain calls for you to sit ready, to move almost to the top of the slide tracks on which your rolling seat rests, and place your blade squarely in the water so both you and it are prepared for that first stroke. The clock is counting down. In the Bryn Mawr boat, your crew passes a fist bump from the coxswain to the stroke, all the way down each seat to the bow of the boat and back up.

“Lane 1 ready.”

You take a deep breath. Adjust your hat.

“Lane 2 ready”

You’ve prepared for this. Practised until the oar became an extension of your arm, until the push off the foot stretchers where your feet are strapped was perfect.

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About Row360

Welcome to Row360, the world’s only global, independent rowing magazine. Row360 brings you features from around the world, profiling the best athletes, coaches, and others from the whole rowing community – Olympic, adaptive, college, club, ocean, and more.