Similar to most clubs, at the Texas Rowing Center, our masters team coach inflicts erg tests on his voluntary athletes. The victims are a
pretty diverse group; from some tiny 60+ women, to young 6’5” men and everything in between. Of course, the old or tiny claim that raw
times do not reflect their contribution to moving the boat, or their excellent physical condition.
I decided to investigate whether the published age, weight and sex correction factors enabled a fair comparison across the squad - and
found that it does. The corrected erg scores do not indicate which athletes will win a race – of course the youngest and fittest will win. But
it does remove most of the variation in the sample, leaving just rowing fitness and erg technique as the residual factors. Interestingly, the
athletes that collect most medals at Nationals Masters across all weights and ages generally had the better corrected times, suggesting
that the corrected results give an indication of masters race performance.
Please note, the corrected times are a referenced to a nominal 27 year old, 270 lb, male athlete, so the times are for comparison to other
corrected times only.
|An age-ist, weight-ist, sex-ist
levelled erg competition
Michael P.C. Watts
|Correction equation uses US rowing age hadicap for 4+, Concept 2 correction for weight, and published 10% correction for gender.
For Excel hackers who want to DIY, the equation is...
CorrectedTime = (ActualTime - Distance/1000*0.0216*(Age-27)^2)*(Weight/270)^0.222)*(IF(Gender = F) THEN 0.9 ELSE 1)
Raw and corrected 1k erg times for 28 male and 9 female masters rowers. The team has a disproptionate number of older smaller women.
The impact of gender, age and weight can be seen in the raw data. These trends are removed in the corrected data.