Athlete of the Month: July

With the summer months rolling on a few of our athletes are getting more and more active. Training and competitions don’t stop for the holidays especially not for UOLBC’s Ben Arthur. He has been keeping up the hard work in preparation for the rowing squad selection come September. Since only starting the sport last year Ben has come a long way, competing at prestigious events such as Head of the River and BUCS Regatta. We caught up with him over summer to find out more about his training regime.

What’s your sport?

I row for the University of Leeds and I am on The British Rowing World Class Start Programme.

What is your training schedule?

I row out on the water five times a week, practising boat skills and completing a certain amount of mileage. I also do four sessions on the rowing machine and another three S&C sessions each week.

What S&C do you do?

My current programme involves a full body workout with around five different exercises. We focus a lot around explosive power and on the legs. However, rowing is a full body sport so I do a bit of everything working upper and lower body in my sessions. Olympic lifting has also recently been added to my programme in the form of introductory exercises such as block clean pulls. The S&C sessions I do are always finished with core workouts as well.

What is your favourite exercise?

My favourite exercise is Bench Pull. Because you are lying face down it allows you to just focus on the pull motion, isolating your back muscles.

What is your least favourite exercise?

Bulgarian Split Squats are probably my least favourite. Putting all my weight on one leg as well as balancing with dumbbells in each hand is really difficult. There are so many other little things you have to focus on which makes the squat process a lot harder.

How do you feel S&C has helped you develop as an athlete?

S&C has improved my performance in rowing through strengthening my levers and core. Levers are your legs and arms which you use to move the boat. A stronger core has allowed me to be more balanced when in the boat and maintaining an activated core is essential when rowing. In addition the Olympic lifting training has enabled me to be more powerful and explosive when rowing.

S&C’s Ben Warman, who has been training Ben Arthur over the past year, only had praise for his development:

“I have thoroughly enjoyed overseeing Ben’s athletic development so far. He has immersed himself into his land based training with a professionalism that is normally seen in athletes far older than himself. His inquisitive attitude and relentless commitment to strength training has allowed him to progress rapidly in a short space of time. Ben’s inclusion in the GB Start Programme is well deserved, and he has a bright future ahead of him as he progresses up towards senior squad selection.”