Home advantage is a wonderful thing, but it also comes with its own pressures and distractions for the New Zealand team at this week's world rowing championships.

Try as they might to approach it as just another regatta, the reality is it is anything but that. So team psychologist Rod Corban has spent plenty of time with the team, preparing the rowers for some of the unique challenges they will face racing on their home waters.

There is the pressure from racing in front of a grandstand packed with home supporters all eager for Kiwi success, and the increased media attention.

But Corban said the biggest challenge was learning how to deal with those distractions, rather than simply trying to block them out.

"It's not so much pressure, it's more the distractions," he said.

"We're in Cambridge, we moved in to motels, your house is just around the corner and your friends and family are close by, which makes it really hard for them to stick to their usual regatta routines."

Having a world championships at home has also afforded Rowing New Zealand the opportunity to enter more crews than they otherwise would have, which means there are a lot of green Kiwis wandering about the Mighty River domain. Corban said he had spent extra time with the younger crews, but believes a home world championships is the perfect environment to introduce them to the big time.

"It's probably not a bad introduction for them. Rather than spending three months away, they moved in to camp two weeks ago and can prepare at home"

Corban, who also works with New Zealand hockey and Paralympics New Zealand, says it takes a special kind of athlete to be a top rower.

"I don't think any other sport has to go through the same pain issues. Cyclists talk about being in the hurt box and they push themselves, but I think the huge lactate build-up the rowers have is unlike that in any other sport," he said.

"They have the ability to push themselves to a place that is not very pleasant - and then go and do it again the next day."

Helping push the Kiwi team to that unpleasant place in the finals over the next three days will be a rowdy home crowd on the shores of Lake Karapiro.

Lucy Strack and Julia Edward, who will compete in the final of the lightweight double sculls today, say the local supporters definitely give them a boost.

Strack, who rowed the race of her life in Wednesday's semifinal to the point where she was physically sick after the race, said hearing the cheers from the grandstand in the final quarter of the race helped spur them on as they produced a big sprint finish to blitz past the American crew and secure third place to book their berth in the final.

"That home crowd, you could hear them roaring from the 500m mark and that's when we just stepped on it. We could see the high performance centre and that was motivation enough and hearing that crowd just will us home is fantastic."