Paired with a rowing blazer, jacket, or button down, the necktie is an all time classic. Lords, gentlemen, businessmen, prepsters, hipsters, even ladies – all sport this fashion icon. Varying in style, the tie provides a flare for every individual, allowing him or her to make a personal statement, or commit a fashion faux pas.

The tie can trace its lineage back to17th century France, when King Louis XIII hired Croatian mercenaries to take care of his dirty laundry. Surprisingly, these humble men set the trend for centuries to come. The cloth around their neck, used to hold their jacket together, caught the eye of the King. He required these accessories to be worn at Royal gatherings, and named them, “La Cravate”, in honor of the Croatian soldiers. King Louis turned function into fashion.

Over the next 200 years, the cravat, and eventually the ascot, came alive as a distinguishing piece in men’s fashion. It reigned with kings in royal courts, held conversation with gentlemen in drawing and smoking rooms, and danced with guests in formal gatherings. The early 1900s, during the age of the industrial revolution, saw the birth of the modern tie. Function and comfort became imperative in the workplace, and designers embraced a new durable and rigid structure. Chic, sleek and more practical, new life was breathed into an old trend. While today’s ties come as varied as the people that wear them, the Club Tie is a classic favorite that has seen its way through British and American history.

A Fashion Favorite

A club tie, defined as any tie bearing a regularly repeated mark, crest, motif, symbol, or insignia indicating membership in a club, order, or other group, is typically designed with the official colors of the group or regiment to which it belongs. Our dapper friends from across the pond, the English, introduced the idea of a club tie. If one takes a close look at these dashing accessories, they will notice that a stripe war is being waged. The British Regimental Ties have stripes slanting from high left to lower right (not exclusively), because it is “from the heart”. It is also the direction of the military salute.

American Military, Societal, and Organizational ties slant in the opposite direction, lower left to high right, as this is the angle at which a soldier draws his sword. However, this is only speculation. Some, of a more cheeky nature, say that the British stripes follow the direction of the face, while the American stripes follow the direction of the crotch.

Many brands, from Brooks Brothers to Ralph Lauren have sought the sense of sophistication and elegance that comes with owning a club tie. It is now a staple of the American wardrobe, the go to fashion of prepsters and classic style seekers.

In designing our own club tie, CATCH & FEATHER has taken inspiration from both British and American styles. In creating our club tie, we wanted to remain true to the essence of the brand. The club tie crest has incorporated aspects of our brand logo: the crown, oars, and signature colors. We put the crest upon a field of navy to represent the water, with accents of red for courage, and gold for victory.

Which way do your stripes run?

 

Feature photo by Sammi Lauren Smith Photography


Nothing short of amazing.

Founded in 2002 by Amanda Kraus, Row New York started as a small all-girls program in Queens. Today, the organization sports three boathouses and offers youth, masters, adaptive, and learn-to row programs. Every aspect of the organization trumpets their motto, “Pulling Together to Push Ahead.”

“Row New York is exceptional in that 80% of our middle and high school students participate in our programs at no cost,” says Ruby Lyon, Marketing and Communications Manager, Row New York. “Our adaptive programs for people with physical and/or mental disabilities, as well as our youth programs for those from underserved communities, offer the opportunity to experience the joy, teamwork and community that is unique to rowing.”

Youth Programs

Many New York City school districts lack the resources needed to keep students healthy. Many do not even have access to green spaces; recess consists of a mere walk around the block. This lack of basic needs plays directly into the some 85% of students who do not meet the recommended physical activity level nationwide. Through Row New York Youth programs, athletes learn the crucial importance of a healthy lifestyle, and 100% of its participants meet this recommended physical activity level. Rowing also instills the confidence, discipline and mentality that helps teens develop and mature, all the while providing an irreplicable sense of community and family.

Row New York Youth programs also provide students with tools to succeed, offering academic counseling and help with standardized testing. “An incredible 100% of Row New York athletes graduate high school on time, compared to 69% of NYC high school students,” said Lyon. Additionally, over the past 10 years, 96% of Row New York’s graduates have matriculated to college. Whether it’s providing homework aid, SAT/ACT Prep, or a hot meal, this program is a second home to its athletes.

In addition to its main competitive youth program, Row New York has a number of outreach projects that greatly benefit the New York City Community.

  1. Middle School Indoor — a “traveling” program for New York area middle schools — teaches students the mechanics of rowing, how to erg and how to live a healthy.
  2. The Juvenile Justice program does the same for young adults in detention centers. Rowing offers them an outlet for releasing energy in a positive manner, as well as the opportunity to be part of something bigger than themselves.

Both of these programs have changed the lives of many young people.

Adaptive Programs

Another important piece of the mission-based programming at Row New York is their adaptive rowing opportunities. Every Saturday, the boathouse in Queens hosts people with physical and mental disabilities.

Row New York also works with District 75, a New York School district comprised of 57 special schools designed to help and teach students with disabilities. Similar to Middle School Indoor, Row New York partners with District 75 in teaching students how to erg and row on water with their on-site visiting program.

Row New York’s new Freedoms Rows program kicked off its first season several weeks ago. Freedom Rows is branch of USRowing that teaches disabled veterans and members of the armed forces how to row. As we have discussed in earlier posts, rowing is an incredibly therapeutic sport — both physically and mentally — and Freedom Rows greatly benefits its participants.

 

Master Programs

Not just for students and young adults, Row New York also offers masters programs, recreational and competitive, as well as learn-to-row programs for those who want to get involved in the sport. The masters programs help fund the mission-based youth and adaptive programs, making Row New York one big family.

A Home Away from Home

Row New York is not a club or program, but a home. It supports its athletes far beyond the boat, and everyone works together to give anyone — no matter their circumstance — the opportunity to experience the incomparable community that is rowing. Alumni can row competitively without cost in the masters programs, and masters often help with youth and adaptive programs through volunteering and workshops.

Career panels, mentorships, and organization-wide regattas bring together athletes of different ages and abilities for a completely unique bonding experience.

Looking to the future, Row New York has plans for growth and expansion, with more boathouses and more opportunities for outreach. In the coming years, they will “keep pulling forward to push ahead”.

For more information: https://rownewyork.org

Photos courtesy of Row New York’s Claudia Loeber, 2017


By the time we reach the end of February, I think we can all agree that it’s time for some fun in the sun with friends or family. No schoolwork. No chores. Maybe even a break from the erg (sorry, Coach).

It’s time to get out that favorite bag or backpack (or buy a new one) and prepare to get away! Spring Break! We’d like to help you get prepared, so here is our top 10 list of things to pack, whether you are going across town or across the country.

  1. Water — hydrate, hydrate, hydrate
  2. Sunscreen — and lots of it! Make sure it’s non-pore clogging and waterproof
  3. A Great Hat — preferably CATCH & FEATHER!
  4. Brush & Hair Ties —for a great-looking high ponytail or man bun!
  5. Comfy Cotton Tee — always perfect
  6. Cover Up/sweatshirt — an easy pull-on for lunch, shopping
  7. Plastic Bag for Wet Bathing Suits/Gear — no sandy bottoms
  8. Protein Bar — no low blood sugar!
  9. Great Book — (bad romance novels acceptable)
  10. Games — it’s playtime, bring your favorites! Cards, Backgammon, Frisbees, Hacky Sack and more

Leave it at home: Stress, Worry, Bad Weather, Bad attitude!

But before you leave, you’ll need a couple versatile outfits to complete your packing. Here are some suggestions from our collection… and you’re ready to go!

Pack light and have fun!

Heritage Cap

Whether shading your eyes, or keeping the sea spray out of your hair, your go-to hat. http://catchandfeather.com/product/heritage-cap/

Make It Reign Tee

Light and breezy, a soft cotton blend tee, paired with shorts, is a classic. On the beach, on a boat, or on the town, you’ll be comfortable and relaxed. http://catchandfeather.com/product/make-it-reign-mens/

 The Heritage Fleece Quarter Zip

 As a small chill approaches with the setting sun, the fun doesn’t have to end. A soft quarter zip will provide the perfect amount of warmth and style. http://catchandfeather.com/product/womens-rowing-apparel-heritage-fleece-sweatshirt-quarter-zip/

 

The Victory Tote

The perfect bag completes the perfect outfit. Something to hold that good book, a towel and sunscreen. http://catchandfeather.com/product/victory-tote/

The Heritage Weekender

 Our large canvas duffel is perfect for any of your travels. It’s light, holds a few days worth of clothing, and fits it in tight spaces — all while looking polished.  http://catchandfeather.com/product/heritage-weekender-bag/

 

 


If there’s one thing that every rower is obsessed with, it’s making and/or keeping their gains.

During the on-season, rowers work incredibly hard to gain fitness and endurance. While rowing may be primarily a mental sport, if you’ve lost the intensity for that 2k or 5k over the summer, getting back in shape can be a difficult and painful time.

There are many ways to stay in shape if you don’t have rowing equipment or water access. Here are just a few tips to keeping your gains:

The Aerobic vs. Anaerobic workout

In order to keep healthy, you must pick the right kinds of workouts. If you run for hours on end or do the same set of weights every single day, you may keep your endurance, but your muscles will get used to certain motions and when it’s time to get back on the water, you will not be ready. This is why it’s important to understand different types of workouts and mix it up!

An Aerobic workout uses energy! When we exercise aerobically we use glycogen and fat as fuel. As you start to exert yourself, carbon dioxide is expelled from your body. Lactic acid is not produced and this type of exercise can be done over long periods of time. It keeps your heart and lungs pumping, allowing you to gain fitness.

In contrast, Anaerobic workouts use only glycogen as fuel. Once all your oxygen has been depleted, you will experience lactic acid build up and fatigue. Doing these workouts will build your intensity and endurance, and will allow you to complete harder workouts in the future. These workouts are usually shorter in length and are more intense.

Balancing these two types of workouts will ensure that you stay in shape and will allow you to reach your fitness goals for the up and coming season.

Examples of Aerobic Workouts

  1. Running – Long distance running is a perfect way to stay in shape if you don’t have access to the water. All you need is a pair of sneakers and the lay of the land. A 20-minute steady state is around a 4k-6k depending on your level. This is about 2.5-4 miles. Depending on how you are feeling, you can adjust your running distances to what you would normally do for steady state workouts. This will give you the same amount of exercise.
  1. Swimming – Swimming is an incredible workout because it gives you all the cardio benefits, but is easy on your joints and muscles. The resistance of the water gives you an extra challenge, which will also improve fitness.
  1. Spinning/Cycling – Like swimming and running, this type of exercise provides a great aerobic workout. It keeps your heart and lungs in wonderful condition, and like swimming, has little impact on your joints.

Examples of Anaerobic Workouts

  1. Sprinting – Again, running is a fantastic way to stay in shape. As opposed to long distance, sprinting will bring an intensity that will lead to an anaerobic workout. Much like you adjust your splits for erging/rowing in shorter bursts, increase your speed and shorten your running distance. Run the distance, take a short break, and run it again, however many times you feel will give you the best workout.
  1. Power lifting – These workouts should focus on building muscle and increasing training capacity. The goal of anaerobic workout is to develop metabolic capacity and thus make the athlete stronger. By lifting maximum amount of weight with as many reps as you can complete in 3-10 seconds, you will build anaerobic capacity.
  1. Interval Training – This cardiorespiratory technique is perfect for creating more aerobic capacity. Body weight activities such as abdominal exercises for a minute, then walking for 30 seconds will give you a fantastic anaerobic workout. This will build muscle and increase endurance and core.

Don’t despair if you can’t get in a boat or on an erg! You can stay fit and focused no matter where you are.

 

Sources

“Aerobic and Anaerobic Exercise: What Is the Difference?” 2016. Accessed July 11. http://www.fitness19.com/aerobic-and-anaerobic-exercise-what-is-the-difference

Bhattacharya, Christina. 2016. “Example of Anaerobic Exercise.” LIVESTRONG.COM. Accessed July 11. http://www.livestrong.com/article/500155-example-of-anaerobic-exercise/.

“Examples of Aerobic Exercise.” 2016. LoveToKnow. Accessed July 11. http://exercise.lovetoknow.com/Examples_of_Aerobic_Exercise.


Row Well. Do Good.™    It’s our mantra.

Nothing feels better than finding your swing, hanging out with your team, and winning the big race.  Except for giving back to the sport you love.

So whether it’s helping out a novice, volunteering in your community at a learn-to-row program or buying some fun gear on our site… give back!

You’ll feel so good, you just might drop your 2K score. 🙂