Do you recommend carrying a small pocket notebook or having a regular size notebook for notes? I currently have a pocket notebook during erg pieces to jot down splits and times. How do you organize all your thoughts and coxswain information?
Definitely! I always liked having two – a pocket sized notebook (that you don’t mind getting wet, wrinkled, or crushed at the bottom of your bag) that you can use to scribble down lineups, notes and reflections from practice, etc. and a separate (slightly larger) notebook to transfer all that stuff into.
The reason I suggest having a separate notebook is so that at the end of the day/week or after race day, you can spend some time transferring everything into a notebook that isn’t wrinkled and gross. (If you’re a fan of digital notes, keeping a running doc in your Google Drive, Evernote, OneNote, etc. would work great too.) This will give you the opportunity to not only re-read your notes from the day and reinforce in your mind what you did, but to also re-write everything so that it’s legible (not scribbled) and organized. When you’re rushing to get erg scores or taking a water break in the boat you don’t have time to think about how nice everything looks, which leads to scattered illegible notes. Taking 5-10 minutes on the bus back to campus, in between classes, during dinner, or whenever to transfer your notes to another notebook allows you to organize it as you please. You don’t have to do that (I have plenty of friends that didn’t care what their notebooks looked like as long as they could loosely make out what they’d written) but it was a strategy that also worked best for me.