I took up rowing, mostly in eights, at school in the United Kingdom at the age of 14 and have been at it more or less ever since. I moved to Canada in 2002 and I've competed in Masters 1X here in Ontario every season since 2003, not without success. I didn't really start using the erg until 2006, when I joined a club with a group of regular users, but the difference that it made to my performance in the boat was amazing! I now have my own Model D in my basement, and it gets used regularly throughout the winter, keeping me strong and fit for when the on water season begins. As a chronic back sufferer (probably resulting from too much incautious weight-training as a teenager), I am also very much aware of how much the erg has improved my core strength. Since starting to erg regularly I have had no serious lower back pain episodes. The Concept2 online challenges are also definitely a source of motivation through the winter, and while I have a typical love-hate relationship with the erg, I have to give it a lot of the credit for my regatta medals. I'll be 60 next week, and I guess I'll just keep at it as long as my system will allow me to!