Pete Cipollone coxing

Coaching Novice Coxswains

“Coxswains have to learn so much just by osmosis… This is not awful, but it is not the best outcome.” – Pete Cipollone

Suggestions for coaching novice coxswains:

I really feel that coxswains have to learn so much just by osmosis. This biases the selection process toward those with great intuition, rather than people with the most potential for the seat. This is not awful, but it is not the best outcome.

Coaches would get tremendously better results from their coxswain corps if they made a point of spending 10 minutes a month (starting in September) telling them, “Here are the one or two criteria you are going to be judged on. I am watching.” This is especially true in the first two years of coxing.

Mike Teti was always crystal clear in what he wanted from a cox. Failing to deliver was like a root canal, just like with the rowers…yea! But at least I knew what would earn me the gold star or the dunce cap.

Pete Cipollone

Coaches would get tremendously better results from their coxswain corps if they made a point of spending 10 minutes a month (starting in September) telling them, “Here are the one or two criteria you are going to be judged on. I am watching.” - Pete Cipollone Click to Tweet

Enjoy reading this? Read the full collection of coxswain tips.

Interested in taking an even deeper look at how national team athletes train and race? Check out The Longest Odds.

Pete Cipollone
Pete Cipollone was a coxswain for the US National Team from 1997-2004. He joined the team after graduating from the University of California, Berkeley, and his career highlights include gold medal wins in the M8+ at the 1997, 1998, and 1999 World Rowing Championships, as well as a gold medal from the 2004 Athens Olympics.

The Longest Odds Inside the Olympic Journey

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Go behind the scenes of the Olympic Journey with The Longest Odds, a photo-documentary that goes inside the Beijing and London Olympic journey of the US Olympic rowing team. 

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