The school year is starting and over the next few weeks teams are going to start holding informational meetings for all the new novices and walk-ons. One question that I guarantee they’ll have but most likely won’t ask is “what do I wear”.
The thing is though, “what to wear” is a forgotten part of most of these meetings, mostly because we all think it’s obvious what is and isn’t the proper attire. (Remember, they don’t have drawers full of unis, tanks, and trou like we do.) I’ve seen guys show up in cargo shorts or NBA-style basketball shorts and women in tennis skirts (not kidding) or those noisy tearaway pants that we used to think were so cool to wear. Then they get annoyed because their clothes get caught in the slides and either get ripped or covered in grease.
It’s important to let everyone know ahead of time whether they need to wear athletic attire on the first day or not because it sets a precedent. It might seem like one of those things that doesn’t really matter but when you’re dealing with people who have never rowed before, are just starting high school or college, and/or don’t know anyone else on the team you don’t want to make them feel awkward or uncomfortable right off the bat by making them feel like they were left out of the loop.
Athletic leggings or shorts, a supportive sports bra, a tshirt (tech fabrics are best but you can get away with a normal tshirt, it’s just gonna get gross), and comfortable training shoes should be your go-to’s for most practices. Once you get further into the season and are issued your uni (or you buy your own) you can wear that to workout in.
Moving on to what not to wear. Hoodies aren’t great because the handle from the erg or oar can get caught in the pocket and because they can also cause you to overheat. Stick to pullovers that sit close to your body if you need an extra layer.. Same with sweatpants – they’re too heavy and can also cause you to overheat. They’ll also get caught in the seat because they’re so baggy. Also, girls, make sure you wear a good sports bra. If you’ve ever had to run while wearing a regular bra you’ll understand why.