Natchitoches has long been a preferred destination for rowing crews across the region. Northwestern State University has hosted a rowing team for over 25 years. The Cane River offers a bit over thirty-six miles of glass smooth water largely protected from wind as well as year-round rowing weather, making it the preferred destination for rowing crews to train and compete. Natchitoches has hosted rowing crews from Vanderbilt, Tulane, Wichita State University, LSU, and St Louis’ Washington University among others who come to our city to train and compete over school breaks.
One such Rowing Crew is The Rowing Club of the Woodlands from Woodlands, Texas. Unlike the crews from colleges and universities, the Rowing Club of the Woodlands is comprised of rowers of all ages. Head Coach Troy Howell and Assistant Coach Magdalena Pillow came to row on the Cane with twenty-eight high school aged youth rowers for training from Saturday through Wednesday. This is Coach Howell’s eighth trip to Natchitoches’ Cane River for rowing.
These young people work hard, with their first rowing session early in the morning, followed by one in the afternoon and evening. Rowing is more than just strength. Form and technique are also critical in getting the last bit of performance out of your boat-and yourself. Rowing is a delicate balance of aerobic and anaerobic exercise as muscles have work at a high rate over a long course of time. Coach Howell is constantly mentoring the rowers as he goes among them in a motorboat. Rowers can compete in boats that hold from one to eight rowers. Rowers in multiperson boats also must learn how to synchronize their movements so the boat moves as one.
Rowing Crews racing on the Cane River are a beautiful sight and are one of the many things that make life in our city special. Rowers are a sure sign of springtime’s arrival!
The Natchitoches Parish Journal wishes the Rowing Club of the Woodlands, and indeed all of our visiting crews, all the best in their upcoming races. Welcome to our city. We are glad you came here!