· Philly Joe Koladziejski: more than 6,000 miles along the southern and eastern coasts of the US from Texas to Maine
· Herman Stiphout: over 400 miles along the western coast of the Sea of Cortez
· Bill Siersdorfer: 260 mile "Texas Water Safari" human powered boat race
· Charlie, Mathew and Ian (three 12 year old boys from the Tsimshian tribe of southeast Alaska): 156 mile "Rite of Passage" journey circumnavigating Revillagigedo Island on the coast of Alaska
The patented FrontRower™ is the only rowing system you can row hands free. It is build exclusively by Ron Rantilla Rowing Systems in Warren, Rhode Island, USA.
The FrontRower™ fits many brands and models of canoes.
More on canoes as rowboats here.
Touring in a rowboat is traveling on the water for enjoyment—rather than racing or logging miles strictly as an exercise routine.
But most people don't think of using a row boat for touring, because conventional rowing is done facing backward, and this makes it impractical for the more enjoyable aspects of touring such as exploration, sight-seeing or photography.
The new FrontRower™ rowing system by Ron Rantilla is designed form the ground up for practical and comfortable touring in rowboats. You row it facing forward. You can row it hands free, using only your legs to power and steer your boat. Or you can add your hands for powerful full body rowing. It has a big comfortable seat with a backrest. The oars lift and feather automatically.
Not limited by convention or the rules of rowing, we were able to make the FrontRower™ system easier to use, more efficient and faster than conventional rear-facing sliding-seat rowing in the same boats.
The FrontRower™ gives you three ways to row your boat:
1. Using just your hands
2. Using just your feet
3. Using your hands and feet together
Rowing and steering with just your feet is a luxury not offered by any other propulsion system, and it lets you use your hands for other things like using a camera, binoculars or fishing gear.
The FrontRower is so easy to use that many people who are not able to row conventionally can row quite well with it. This includes older people and people with disabilities such as arm or leg amputations. See adaptive rowing.
More on the FrontRower™here.
A Common Misconception
It's a common belief that sliding-seat rowing is the fastest and most efficient way to propel a rowboat. The sliding seat lets you add the power of your legs. But a lot of that power is wasted in the back and forth movement of the rower on the seat.
The inefficiency of the sliding-seat system was demonstrated in 1981 when a fixed-seat boat with sliding riggers (the overhanging structure with the oarlocks) won the Men's Singles at the World Rowing Championships in Munich. By 1983, all the Men's Singles finalists were using fixed-seat rowboats with sliding riggers. Then sliding riggers were banned from sanctioned racing.
The FrontRower uses a fixed seat with moving pedals to develop leg power. This reduces efficiency losses due to weight shifting to almost zero. Tests show the FrontRower™ to be as much as 19 per cent more efficient than a sliding seat rig in the same boat. See rowing efficiency.