Getting Started

The Damper and Drag of Olympians

Jul 30, 2018

Concept2 generally recommends a damper setting on the indoor rower between three and five. Damper Setting is not resistance. The damper controls the air flow into the flywheel. It affects the feel of the stroke, but does not directly determine the resistance—which is generated by the speed of the rotating flywheel. A setting of “10” is not “better” nor indicating strength or speed. In fact, we asked some of our favorite Olympians and coaches what damper setting they use and why. The answers and their reasoning, below, may surprise you.

The athletes we interviewed prefer to adjust their indoor rowers to a specific drag factor instead of to a damper setting. Drag factor is recalulated on every run-down of the flywheel and takes local conditions into account. Indoor rowers adjusted to the same drag factors will feel similar, regardless of what damper setting is used to achieve that drag. It is important to note that the Performance Monitor self-calibrates, so regardless of damper setting or changing conditions, your true effort is measured. Here's how to Display Drag Factor on your Performance Monitor. Continue Reading ›