No, I’m not referring to carousels here, or old fogies, or that band known as The Pogues. Not that there is anything wrong with any of those things. I’m referring to the accessory that has prevented frostbite for many a finger, even if it looks something like a head cover for a golf club. They are pogies. In this case, pogies for sculling.
Here’s what a pair of pogies looks like.
“It looks like a mitten with two wrists,” you say. You’re exactly right. It’s just that one set is for a pair of hands, and one set is for the oar handles.
“But why can’t you just wear a pair of gloves when you row in the cold? Why would you need special rowing mittens?”
Have any of you tried to adjust the volume on your stereo/iPod while wearing oven mitts?
It’s all about the fine motor control and grip needed to feather and square the oar in your fingers. Pogies allow you the same grip control as you have with bare hands, yet keep your fingers from freezing in cold temps, by going over the oar handles.
I knit these from a pattern that Kathy McCormack has posted on the Northwest Rowing Council’s website, which I got to via Ravelry. Kathy has generously allowed people to use the pattern for free, and to make and sell pogies made from this pattern as a rowing club fundraiser.
I knitted these two pretty quickly, using Cascade 220 Paints worsted weight wool yarn (it’s warm when wet!) with size 6 needles for the ribbing, and size 8 needles for the bodies of the pogies. It took less than one skein for the two. I bet you could get one done during an NCAA basketball game, for example, if your knitting skills include using double pointed needles. And thanks to YouTube, you can find out how to do any of the knitting skills you didn’t know.
And if they fail to keep your fingers warm in the cold rowing seasons, you’ve always got new covers for your five and seven woods.