Short rows are typically used in knitting and WAY less often in crochet. Most knitters see a "short row" in the pattern and without missing a stitch, knit/purl to their heart's content.
From my anecdotal experience, crocheters have a much different reaction when they encounter those words:
"Short row? What the hell is a short row?!!?"
It's super-duper simple my friends! Don't be intimidated.
A short row is simply a row that stops short of the row previously crocheted. For example:
"Rows 2-35, SC across 20 stitches, ch 1, turn. Row 36, SC across 15 stitches, ch 1, turn. Row 37, SC across 20 stitches, ch1, turn"
Voila! Short row created! In the example above, Row 36 is the short row. In Row 37, stitches 16-20 are crocheted into Row 35.
I promise it only sounds more complicated than it really is. It's a technique worth learning. Short rows allow crocheters to add gentle curves to their finished fabric. The short row can be used to add almost imperceptible darts to garments, like sweaters and T-shirts. My personal favorite use of the short row is for shaping crocheted socks and mittens worked in the flat!
I'd love to see more design incorporating short rows in crochet!