Rowing Terms & Parts of the Boat

This list is not extensive but are  the more common terms used.

Blade

The spoon end of the oar (also used to refer to the whole oar)

Bow

The front end of the boat.

Bow pair

The two persons sitting in the front end of the boat.

Bow side

All the people who sit on the same side as the person closest to the bows.

Button

The plastic stop on the oar which sits against the gate and stops the oar sliding out into the water.

Catch

The part of the stroke when the blade goes into the water.

Cox

The person who steers the boat and gives the commands.

Feathered Blades

When coming forward for the next stroke the blade is feathered so that it is horizontal to the water.

Finish

The part of the stroke when the blade comes out of the water.

Gate

The black plastic swivel which the oar is placed in. This must be always be done up securely.

Gearing

The ratio of the oar length inboard of the pin to the oar length outboard of the pin.

Gunwale

The wooden “ rail” that runs around the top of the hull of the boat. The gates are fixed to this.

Loom

The section of the oar between blade and handle.

Pin

The point that the gate swivels round.

Pitch

The angle of the blade to the water.

Port side

The left hand side of the boat looking to the bows while in the boat

Pressure

The amount of work put into the water depending on how hard you use your arms, back and legs.

Light, Half and Firm are the three degrees used. To get round corners the cox may ask one side to put in more pressure than the other. When round the corner the cox will call even pressure which means equal pressure on both sides.

Rating

The speed you are rowing at. It is measured in strokes per minute.