• Coach Knickerbocker

Reset or Rebirth


It’s my strong belief that when circumstances become unrecognizable, it is a strong indication that a reset is in order.


Resetting can mean starting over, or a realignment of priorities, or letting something go, or letting something in. Resetting can also mean re-evaluating your current status and deciding to change your trajectory.


In computer parlance resetting is done by hitting control+alt+delete at the same time in order to get out of a computer jam. Nothing is working, the screen is frozen, your clicking on the icons on your screen, but not getting any response.


So you use this failsafe measure of resetting. I don't know exactly what happens inside the computer when one presses these buttons. All I know is that it fixes the issue so one can keep the productivity flowing. I think that's where we go astray. This constant need to keep the productivity flowing.


But this just brings you back to where ever you were before everything froze up.


My question to you is this, do you just want to end up back where you were, or would you rather be reborn into something new?


What if you were to take the you as an athlete-competitor before this moment, add in where you are now, and then mold them like clay to become something new?

A reborn version of you as an athlete-competitor, a rebirth of what mindset you practice, who you want to be on the water, in the boat, and on the team.


When one is rowing 3-4 or more days a week, training, competing, looking towards the next regatta, and the next practice, and the next, and the next, and the next...one doesn't necessarily slow down long enough to recalibrate.

There's a strong sense of time crunch and everything needing to be followed by the next practice session, or training, or race.

This common approach does not lend itself to reflection or renewal.


I know some of you are frustrated with not being on the water.

I know many of you are disappointed that races and regattas you would normally look forward to are cancelled for this year.

So let me suggest that you channel that energy into a more positive approach to the unknown future.


NOW is the perfect time for a rebirth.

NOW is the perfect time to intensely examine yourself thru an athlete-competitor magnifying glass and re-organize your rowing DNA from the inside out.

You have an amazing opportunity in this moment to examine you, examine your relationship to your sport and examine your self-concept of your "rower" identity.

NOW is an opportunity to evaluate, review, breathe, and plan for re-entry as a new you.



What does that look like Coach?

How do I do that?


You have to approach this from the most honest and self-critical place possible in order for it to be effective. This should be a deep dive into every aspect you can think of regarding your rowing: being an athlete, being a competitor, being a teammate, how you've engaged in mindset training, physical training, technical training, what challenges you've faced both on the water and off, what you've accomplished in your rowing, and what you haven't accomplished that maybe you want to, what are your peccadilloes, how could your attitude towards other competitors, coaches, teammates be more supportive, or more engaged, how well do you receive constructive criticism, what holds you back or what motivates you to move forward?


The list you come up with for you will be more appropriate.

These are only suggestions, only a jumping off point. You could also pick a single element to dive into. Whatever, just keep it real.

If you look hard enough and honestly enough you will find what is stuck in your craw.


Finally it's crucial, I believe, to consider what you want to cut loose. What is the deadweight (mental, physical, or emotional) you are carrying around that you want to free yourself from? What can you refine and why do you want to refine it? What elements of being a rower stand out for you about YOU?

Ask yourself the hard questions.

Look at all of it.

The good, the bad, and the ugly.



Once you feel as if you've got a good handle on the above, decide what key elements you want to focus on and the best approach to moving through them.


It can be helpful to have someone with an objective perspective assisting in this process, or being a sounding board for doing this kind of work, like a coach, because as much as you may have the best of intentions, holding yourself accountable to yourself, does not always work. Coaches help to accelerate the learning process.

I'm here if you need me.



This moment does not have to be a reset back to the usual, the known, the recognizable, but rather it can be a rebirth into something or someone completely new.

A new you as an athlete.

A new you as a competitor.

A new you as a human.


A reset is simply a restart of the familiar.

But a rebirth?

That’s finding something completely new within the familiar.



Row hard, Row well, Compete, Have fun!

Coach Knickerbocker


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