Coxing Q&A

Question of the Day

What are some items and pieces of clothing that you think all coxes should have at indoor practices (normal ones and tanks) as well as in the boat once we are on the water again? I’m trying out for a new team (switching from rowing to coxing) and I want to be prepared and give a good impression of that to the coach.

This clip from GIRLS pretty much explains my stance on how coxswains should dress at practice.

I can’t imagine the coach is really going to care what you wear but to answer your question, just keep it casual. I pretty much live in leggings and pullovers or some iteration of that, unless I’ve gotta go somewhere right after practice, in which case I’ll wear normal clothes. Our coxswains all do the same, if they’re not wearing sweatpants and a tshirt they’ll usually wear whatever they plan on wearing to class, unless they want to bike or workout while the guys are erging. It used to bug me when coxswains would wear “normal” clothes to practice because you’re pretty much just asking to leave with your nice clothes smelling awful and you just look out of place but honestly, wear whatever you want. Stop by an American Apparel if you have to.

Related: What to wear

Once you’re on the water what you wear is going to depend on what the weather’s like. Do not be that weirdo that wears jeans and a button down while you’re coxing though. I can’t even with coxswains that do that. Check out all the “what to wear” posts though (linked in the tag above) – they cover pretty much everything.

As far as other things to have, at practice a notebook is always handy but there’s not usually much for coxswains to do when you’re inside so there’s not really anything you need to have with you.

Related: What’s the most basic gear a novice coxswain should have?

All anyone is going to care about you bringing on the water is your cox box so whatever else you bring is up to you. I’d recommend a waterproof bag with a wrench or two, a recorder, some electrical tape, and some band aids to start.

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Comments (2)

  1. FWIW – if you’re on the water, you should wear something you’re prepared to swim in, JUST. IN. CASE. Can you swim in those gawd awful huge rubber boots? No? Don’t wear them.

    Like taking a swim test at the pool – jump in with your clothes on and tread water for 5 minutes.

    1. Ugh, yes. I wear my Wellies whenever it’s rainy or a little on the cool side and this is definitely always on my mind when the conditions are poor. There has to be a level of self-awareness when it comes to what you’re wearing and on the very, very slim chance you do end up in the water, how much your clothes are going to work against you and compromise your safety…