Some of the oldest questions in rowing revolve around optimal times for training and competition. Row in the morning and get up in the evening? Or lifting in the morning and rowing in the evening? Race ahead or behind?
A study published earlier this year in the journal “Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise” might have some answers.
The authors of this meta-analysis looked at 10,460 studies and narrowed them down to 63 publications that met the following three criteria: “1) the studies included humans and 2) any type of maximal endurance or maximal strength test was performed at 3) a minimum of three different times of the day.There were no restrictions regarding study design, gender, age, or fitness level of participants.
The study showed that anaerobic power peaked between 1 p.m. and 8 p.m.
Through these studies, the authors found that peak power in endurance exercise tests, hand grip strength, and jump height all seemed to lean toward higher performance later in the day. Specifically, the study found that, in test subjects, anaerobic power and jump height tended to peak between 1 p.m. and 8 p.m.
More interesting for rowers, however, the study found “little evidence that there is a moment of peak performance at peak endurance.”
In other words, lift or work on power later in the day, but race anytime!
Of course, rowing is a power/endurance hybrid sport, so it’s not entirely clear if it’s a morning or afternoon sport – but you can skew or schedule your workouts based on the time of day you train. And if your departures are faster in the afternoon, don’t be surprised!
Max stamina had no peak time