Initially following in the footsteps of her older sister as a high school rower, Girls Crew Co-Captain Emily Warren ’21 carved her own path in the sport with the enthusiasm and tenacity she brings to the team. As an experienced rower and a leader on the team, Warren focuses on demonstrating mental strength to encourage her teammates and reach her full potential.
According to Warren, her older sister introduced her to crew and after she began playing the sport in middle school, her passion for rowing has continued to grow. Warren also noted the impact the older rowers at Andover had on her as she began racing during the competitive season in the spring of her Junior year.
“My sister was actually the person who recommended rowing to me because she rowed at Deerfield. My eighth-grade summer I tried it out at my hometown club [and then] when I came to Andover, I tried out crew my [Junior] year. That was the non-competitive season and I had a lot of fun and the Seniors were also really open to talking to the [Juniors] and other grades which encouraged me to continue. [Then], I tried out crew during the spring competitive season. The competitive element makes [crew] more fun because you’re actually prepping for races against other strong crew programs. In that way, it also made me a faster rower,” said Warren.
According to Allie Chung ’23 and Co-Captain Mia Levy ’21, Warren demonstrates the highest level of skill along with an energized spirit that motivates the entire team. Levy also noted how Warren is a coachable athlete who always strives to make improvements.
“I think Emily’s biggest asset is her friendliness and the comfort she adds to the team environment. It’s a given that she’s an amazing, strong, dedicated rower, but on top of that, she brings a warmth and welcoming to the role of captain that makes new rowers like me appreciate crew that much more. The team is super large and the sport can be pretty intimidating, so little things like her approaching [me] and inviting me and my friend to dinner to get to know us have really made my crew experience,” said Chung.
“Emily is a super energetic and positive presence on the team. She always has something supportive to say to her teammates and is really great at making friends with younger rowers and making them feel like really important members of the team. She is always super focused in the boat and whenever a coach gives her technical feedback she makes the change right away which is a super important skill in rowing,” added Levy in an email to The Phillipian.
Warren mentioned that through her positivity, she aims to push her teammates to carry an optimistic attitude while still staying focused on the race.
“I would say positivity is my best attribute. The way you act around other people really influences yourself as well as the people around you. If you are around a group of really excited people, you are automatically going to be more hyped up for a race, so I try to be a really positive influence on my teammates. Before a race, I stay cool, calm, and collected but at the same time having positive energy to get everyone excited for the race [is also important],” said Warren.
According to Aleisha Roberts ’22, Warren’s consistent technical skills as a rower stand out amongst the team.
“Emily is one of our strongest rowers because of her incredible consistency. Regardless of the seat that she’s in, she always backs up the stroke [by] setting a strong rhythm. When she is moved from starboard to port, or into the stroke seat, she has a great understanding of what makes a good stroke, and in that way, she is flexible and reliable. She also has impeccable posture, and her power on the erg translates wonderfully into the water,” wrote Roberts in an email to The Phillipian.
According to Warren, improving her mental toughness and overcoming fear before races has allowed her to reach her full potential as a rower.
“Mental toughness is one of my strengths. When I started rowing, it was one of the biggest parts [I needed to work on] because I was always afraid of the pain I was going to feel when I push it at the end of a race. So, it would prevent me from doing better at the beginning and I would have a lot of energy for the end. I was scared of feeling tired, but that is something that I overcame through training and telling myself that pain is always temporary. That made me a lot tougher in rowing. I don’t have the height advantage that a lot of people do, so I have to row with my heart and my mind without that physical advantage,” said Warren.