BLS Crew Back on the Charles

By Romy Li (III), Contributing Writer

Ever since the pandemic, things have been quite different for Boston Latin School sports teams. As vaccines are becoming more accessible to the general public, however, many teams are beginning to gradually step back into practices and competitions. Among them is the Crew team, which has managed to function well in a scheduled rhythm, while also ensuring its members stay safe and socially distanced.

Normally, practices involve being put into a group and either rowing on the water, on a rowing machine or running up to eight miles. Furthermore, Crew used to be centered on competition. Members worked on conditioning and training for future races in these rowing and erging groups, building their speed and form.

Things have gotten a bit more complicated now that members need to stay distanced. Eric Huang (III), who has been a part of the team since seventh grade and a varsity member since eighth grade, says, “ Practice luckily has gone back to normal now, but when the pandemic first started [in the fall] we were not able to row our normal racing boats. Practicing in smaller boats was fun at first, but I missed being able to row in larger boats with my team.”

Nate Zhang (III), a varsity Crew member who has been on the team since ninth grade, describes what Boys’ Varsity practices now look like: “We get there at [around] 5:00 [A.M.]. The first thing we usually do is put the oars on the dock, and then we meet up and discuss what we’re going to do for the day. Following that, we complete drills; for technique, sometimes we do power drills (10 power strokes, 10 normal).” Many of the major changes from before have been reduced to minor ones.

While the Crew team can agree that this year has not turned out as expected, spirits are still high and sportsmanship has not failed. Bornhorst’s favorite part of Crew is the family feeling of the team, and he says, “From my first season to now my fifth season, I have made some of my closest friends. I am so close with my coaches and look forward to going to practice every day because it truly is such a fun and enjoyable environment.”

Huang agrees, “My favorite thing would probably be getting to go outside and interact with my friends. During and in this pandemic, Crew has been one of the few things that allow me to feel like my old self again.”