We All Stroke Together | Alyssa J Freitas: We All Stroke Together

December 4, 2013

We All Stroke Together

{Photo Credit: http://www.classygirlswearpearls.com
/2013/10/head-of-charles-regatta-13.html}
I love being on the water. I absolutely, positively, undeniably love it! For this reason, when I found out that The College of New Jersey has a club crew team that anyone can join, I signed right up. 
Meeting my teammates, learning about how to use ergs (indoor rowing machines), and visiting the boathouse for the first time was exciting and fun. . .  and then morning practices began. 

An average day for a member of crew begins at 4 am when we all groggily make our way in the freezing cold to the meeting spot on campus. After sleepily nodding hello to one another, we load into the cars of the upperclassmen to take the 20 minute drive to the lake where we practice. Once we arrive, we have to carry the equipment from our trailer to the docks in the freezing cold. Next is a mile run in the darkness, and did I mention it's freezing cold. After that is over we have to carry the boats down to the docks and start our drills. By now it's about 5:45 am. Practice ends around 7 am after we've put away and cleaned all of the equipment. Back into the cars we go and once we arrive on campus we have a team breakfast.

Now, you may be wondering why anyone would put themselves through this. The answer is different for every member of the crew. For me, it all comes down to the camaraderie and extensive time I get to spend on the water. So many bonds are formed and friendships made while working together to become the best we can be.

As a small, and not very strong girl, I am not really built to be a rower. But, believe it or not, there is a perfect job for me on the team: I am a coxswain. The coxswain is the person who steers the boat, gives the commands, and is responsible for continuously motivating the crew. Being a coxswain is stressful, but I have found that it has helped me to control and think about my actions. Historically, I have been an over-reactor. Since coming to college however, I have been able to maintain my composure in every situation; something I never thought I would be able to do!

Finding an activity that helps you work better with others and improve yourself is truly wonderful! What has motivated you to become better and keep it simple?

-Keep It Simple
    Alyssa J Freitas    


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