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Rowing Frequently Asked Questions
Originally from the rec.sport.rowing newsgroup

  1. Introduction: Why do we do this?
  2. How do I get started?
  3. The Boats: What kinds of boats are used? What do the symbols mean (eg. W8+)?
    • Sweep
    • Sculls
    • Weight classes
  4. Terminology: What do some of the terms mean?
    • Equipment (hatchets, sculls, riggers, etc.)
    • The rowing cycle (catch, drive, feathering, etc.)
    • Coxswain commands
    • Other (stroke, crab, etc.)
  5. Race Formats: What is the usual distance of a race? How long can they take?
    • Standard
    • Start Procedures
    • Head Races
    • Bumps
  6. Ergometers: What do rowers prefer? What's a CRASH-B? What's with the different settings?
  7. General Safety and Maintenance
  8. Rowing Books, Magazines and Further Information: How can I subscribe to a rowing magazine?
  9. Addresses of Interest: Who can I contact for more information about rowing? (ARA, FISA, SARA, USRA)
  10. Rowing Camps: Are there places where I can learn how to row?
  11. Links to rowing organizations on the web worldwide: Colleges, Clubs, others (from www.Row2K.com).
  12. Vendors of Rowing Merchandise and more.

    1. Introduction: Why do we do this?

    There are many reasons I suppose.

    One view ...

    `Karen rowed for what the venerable American shell builder George Pocock called `the symphony of motion.' As dawn breaks over the river, the shell is lifted from its rack out into the morning. On another rack the oars hang ready to be greased and slipped into the locks. Then, awakened to the river and the feel of the oars, the oarsmen blend in fulfilment of the shell. The symphony is not of competition. It is the synchronous motion over water, the harmonic flexing of wood and muscle, where each piece of equipment and every oarsman is both essential to, and the limit of motion itself.'

    - The Shell Game (Stephen Kiesling)

    And yet another view ... from an article by Brad Lewis in whichhe describes his feelings near the end of the singles final racethat would determine who would represent the U.S. in the 1984Olympic singles competition:

    'I led by three or four feet, with Biggy (John Biglow) surging closer on each stroke. I hated him in those last few seconds; he was the only reason my guts were being strewn over the water like an oil slick ... I pressed one last time, and looked at the finish-line flagman. In that instant the flag jumped down and then up. The up stroke, identifying the second place finisher, was for me. John Biglow was the victor. I stared into the green-brown water watching my bloody soul drop through the depths, slowly rocking back and forth, occasionally glinting in the light, and then finally disappearing.'

    - from ROW magazine `Death at the Single Trials'

    As dawn breaks over the river, the shell is lifted from it's rack out into the morning. On another rack, the oars hang ready to be greased and slipped into the locks. Then, awakened to the river and the feel of the oars, the oarsmen blend in fulfillment of the shell. The symphony is not the competition. It is the synchronous motion over water, the harmonic flexing of the wood and muscle, where each piece of equipment and every oarsman is both essential to, and the limit of motion itself.

    -- Symphony of Motion, George Pocock

    2. How do I get started?

    If you are an experienced rower and would like to join the Mission Bay Rowing Association, please see the MBRA Membership page for complete details

    If you have never rowed before, rowing classes are available at the Mission Bay Acquatic Center.

    Rowing is a very good fitness activity. It burns nearly the same amount of calories per hour as does cross-country skiing - the best aerobic activity. Rowing strengthens your upper and lower body as well as your heart muscle. The motion of rowing is not hard on the joints, therefore the sport can be continued throughout your life, with little injury. For the competitive rowers, who are driving their shells as fast as possible to the non-competitive, recreational rower, who enjoys the challenge of achieving the perfect stroke, or the tranquillity of an early morning of bird watching, Mission Bay offers a perfect body of water for all rowers.

    The most comfortable clothing to wear while rowing is shorts - not too baggy - and a T-shirt. If the weather is cool, sweatpants and/or sweatshirts that do not restrict your motion are a good idea. The barge sits outside all year-round, therefore at times can be salty or dusty, please do not wear your best clothes, they may get dirty. People with small feet (size 5 or smaller) may wish to wear tennis shoes with no sole i.e. VANS or a shoe without a flared heal. Most rowers wear a pair of thick sock to protect their feet from blisters. Aquasocks or wetsuit booties are equally good.

    NOTE: For all aquatic activities at the Mission Bay Aquatic Center, you will need to take a swim test, or show a Dive card like PADI, or a Water Safety Red Cross card.

    3. What kinds of boats are used?

    The boats (or shells) are basically of two types and reflectthe two forms of rowing---sweep rowing and sculling. In sweep rowing each rower handles a single oar (about 12.5 ft or 3.9 m long) in sculling a rower uses two oars, or sculls, (each about 9.5 ft or 3 m long). The word shell is often used in reference to the boats used because the hull is only about 1/8" to 1/4" thick to make it as light as possible. These shells are also rather long and racing shells are as narrow as possible while recreational ones can be rather wide. Most shells today are made of composite materials such as carbon fiber, fiberglass, or kevlar. A few manufacturers still build wooden boats.

    Each rower has his back to the direction the shell is moving and power is generated using a blended sequence of the rower's legs, back and arms. The rower sits on a sliding seat with wheels on a track called the slide.

    Each oar is held in a U-shaped swivel (oarlock) mounted on a metal pin at the end of a rigger. The rigger is an assembly of tubes that is tightly bolted to the body of the shell.The exception to this are some european recreational boats called "inriggers" which have the oarlock attach directly on the gunwale. The subtypes of rowing shells are classified according to the number of rowers in the shell.

    Sweep Boats (each rower has one oar)
    These shells can have a coxswain---a person who steers the shell (using a rudder) and urges the rowers on. I have included in parenthesis the symbol used for each subtype along with some dimensions and weights.
    Coxed Pair (2+)
    Two sweep rowers with a coxswain.
    Coxless Pair (2-)
    Two sweep rowers without a coxswain.
    Coxed Four (4+)
    Four sweep rowers with a coxswain.
    Straight (or Coxless) Four (4-)
    Four sweep rowers without a coxswain. Steering is usually accomplished via a rudder that is attached to a cable that is connected to one of the rower's foot stretchers (this an adjustable bracket to which the rower's feet are secured). The coxless pair has a similar type of rudder setup.
    Eight (8+/8o)
    Eight sweep rowers with a coxswain. Eights are 60+ ft (~18.5 m) long and weigh about 250 pounds (~114 kg).
    Sculling Boats (each rower has two oars)
    Only in rare cases do these boats have a coxswain. Steering is generally accomplished by applying more power or pressure to the oar(s) on one side of the shell. The hands overlap (usually left over right in the US) during part of the rowing cycle, or are always left in front of right.
    Single (1X)
    One rower or sculler. Singles are about 26 ft (8 m) long and less than a foot (0.3 m) wide. Racing singles can weigh as little as 30 pounds (~13.5 kg). There are heavier (~45 to 50 pounds), shorter and wider versions often referred to as recreational singles.
    Double (2X)
    Two scullers. Most racing doubles can be also used as a pair with a different set of riggers designed for sweep oars. When used as a pair a rudder is usually added. There are also recreational versions of sculling doubles.
    Quadruple (4X)
    Four scullers. Often referred to as a `quad' and usually has a rudder attached to one of the sculler's foot stretchers as in the straight four. Most quads can also be rigged as a straight four using a different set of riggers.
    Octuple (8X)
    Eight scullers. This is rarely seen, though is used in the UK, at least, in junior competition where sweep rowing is not allowed.
    Weight Classifications
    There are basically two weight classes for rowers---heavyweight (HWT) and lightweight (LWT).
    Men (M)
    For team LWT boats, there is a 72.5 kg (~160 lbs) individual maximum, and the boat must average no more than 70 kg (~155 lbs).
    Women (W)
    The individual maximum for team LWT boats is 59 kg (~130 lbs), and the boat must average no more than 57 kg (~125 lbs).

    In the US, the women have an individual max only; no average. In some regattas in the US (usually head races late in the season) these limits are increased by 5 lbs.

    A rowing shell is usually built with a particular weight class of rower in mind. Until just recently the Olympics effectively had only HWT classifications.

    4. What do the terms used in rowing mean?

    Equipment terminology

    The wide flat section of the oar at the head of the shaft, also known as the spoon. This term is often used when referring to the entire oar.
    Hatchets (a.k.a. big blades or choppers or cleavers)
    A relatively new design of oar blades (although the idea has been around for some time). These were introduced by Concept II (Spring 1992) and are what the names indicate---oar blades that have a bigger surface area than the `standard' (Macon) blades and have a hatchet or meat cleaver shape. The hatchets are a bit shorter (by about 7 cm) than the standard blades.
    This term is used interchangebly when referring to one of the oars used in a sculling shell, the shell itself or to the act of rowing a sculling shell.
    Foot Stretcher (or bootstretchers)
    An adjustable bracket in a shell to which the rower's feet are secured in some sort of shoe or clog.
    The sliding seat that the rower sits on. The term "seat" also refers to the rowers place in the boat; the convention is to number the seats from bow to stern, i.e. the rower closest to the front of the boat is "1-seat" the next, "2-seat", et c. The 1-seat is also commonly referred to as "bowseat" or just "bow" while the sternmost (rear) seat is referred to as "stroke seat" or just "stroke".
    Rigger (or outrigger)
    The device that connects the oarlock to the shell and is bolted to the body of the shell. On sweep boats, riggers are typically alternating from side to the other on adjacent seats, but it is not uncommon to see two adjacent riggers on the same side. This is referred to as "tandem rigging". Variaties include "bucket rigging", "German Rigging" and "Italian Rigging".
    Oarlock (or rowlock)
    A U-shaped swivel which holds the oar in place. It's mounted at the end of the rigger and rotates around a metal pin. A gate closes across the top to keep the oar in.
    Button (or collar)
    A plastic or metal fitting tightened on the oar to keep the oar from slipping through the oarlock.
    The angle between the blade (on the drive when the blade is `squared') and a line perpendicular to the water's surface.
    Slide (or track)
    The track on which the seat moves.
    Gunwale (or gunnel, saxboard)
    Top section on the sides of a shell which runs along the sides of the crew section where the rowers are located. The riggers are secured to the gunwale with bolts.
    Technically, the structual member running the length of the boat at the bottom of the hull. Today, some shells are built without this member so the term often refers to the center line of the shell.
    Steering device at the stern. The rudder in turn is connected to some cables (tiller ropes) that the coxswain can use to steer the shell. Older shells have short wooden handles (knockers) on the tiller ropes. These knockers are used by the coxswain not only to steer the shell, but also to rap out the cadence of the stroke rate on the gunwale.
    Skeg (or Fin)
    A small fin located along the stern section of the hull. This helps to stabilize the shell in holding a true course when rowing. All racing shells have a skeg. The skeg should not be confused with the rudder.
    The adjustment and alteration of accessories (riggers, foot-stretchers, oar, etc.) in and on the shell. Examples of rigging adjustments that can be made are the height of the rigger, location of the foot-stretchers, location and height of the oarlocks, location of the button (or collar) on the oar and the pitch of the blade of the oar.
    Slings (or boat slings, or trestles)
    Collapsible/portable frames with straps upon which a shell can be placed temporarily.

    Rowing cycle terms

    Starting with the rower at `rest' and legs fully extended with the oar blades immersed in the water perpendicular (well ... almost) to the water's surface.

    A sharp downward (and away) motion of the hand which serves to remove the oar blade from the water and start the rowing cycle. Yeh, yeh where does the stroke cycle really start?
    The act of turning the oar blade from a position perpendicular to the surface of the water to a position parallel to the water. This is done in conjunction with the release.
    Part of the rowing cycle from the release up to and including where the oar blade enters the water.
    A gradual rolling of the oar blade from a position parallel to the water to a position (almost) perpendicular to the surface of the water. This is accomplished during the recovery portion of the rowing cycle and is done in preparation for the catch.
    The point of the rowing cycle at which the blade enters the water at the end of the recovery and is accomplished by an upward motion of the arms and hands only. The blade of the oar must be fully squared at the catch.
    That part of the rowing cycle when the rower applies power to the oar. This is a more (or less) blended sequence of applying power primarily with a leg drive, then the back and finally the arms.
    The last part of the drive before the release where the power is mainly coming from the back and arms.
    The amount of backward lean of the rower's body at the end of the finish. Now we start again with the release and ...

    Coxswains Commands

    In order for the crew to work a team or unit, the cox'n will give specific commands. Most of the commands will be based off of a three part sequence, starting with the description, then the questions "Ready?", and finally the command to move. These commands should come in a even cadence, so that the crew will act in unison.

    To move a boat stored on a rack:

    	Hands on the name of the boat
    	Up and off the rack,   READY? (pause) Up
    	To the shoulders, READY? (pause) Up
    	Walk it out, watching the riggers (meaning to make sure the boat riggers being 	
    		carried out, do not hit the riggers on the stored boats)

    To move a boat that is right side up, from the water to slings.

    	One hand center, decide who is going to split.
    	Over heads, READY?  (pause) Up
    	Split to sides, READY ? (pause) Down - boat goes to the oarsperson shoulders
    	Walk if up (the beach)
    	once on the wash off pad, Weigh-enough
    	To the waist, READY? (pause) down
    	To the stretchers, READY? (pause) down

    When rowing the cox'n may want to have only have some of the crew rowing, if they want to change something they could do something like the following:

    To change a pair of rowers from balancing to rowing - during warm-up

    	In TWO,  3 and 4 to drop out, 5 and 6 to add in,
    	ONE, at the catch of 8 seat
    	TWO, at the second catch of 8 seat
    	On this one, said immediately after TWO
        The rowers 3 and 4 should continue to row until the RELEASE of
        stroke TWO, at that time they will begin to balance the boat with
        their oars.  The 5 and 6 rowers will continue to balance the boat,
        until the RELEASE of stroke TWO,  at which time they will begin to
        row following the Stern pair of rowers.

    To increase the stroke length or pressure

    	In TWO,  full slide or 1/2 pressure
    	ONE, at the catch of 8 seat
    	TWO, at the second catch of 8 seat
    	On this one, said immediately after TWO

    Other terms of interest

    The forward end of the shell. Also used as the name of the person sitting nearest to the bow.
    The rear end of the shell.
    The left side of the boat when facing the bow (stroke side in the UK and Ireland).
    The right side of the shell when facing the bow (bow side in the UK and Ireland).
    The person who steers the shell and urges the rowers on during practices and in a race. A knowledgeable coxswain can also serve as a coach for the rowers and can be the difference between winning and losing a race.
    The Stroke
    The rower sitting nearest the stern (and the coxswain, if there is one). The stroke is responsible for setting the stroke length and cadence (with the coxswain's gentle advice).
    Frig rigging
    See Tandem Rigging.
    Tandem rigging
    Variations of rigging of sweep boats with adjacent riggers being on the same side of the boat. Also known as Frig rigging (UK). See below (the rigging terms below are the subject of debate as to exactly what configuration they refer to, and they are often used interchangeably).
    Bucket rigging
    The rigging of an eight or a four so that riggers 2 and 3 are on the same side.
    German rigging
    The rigging of an eight so that riggers 4 and 5 are on the same side while the others alternate.
    Italian rigging
    The rigging of an eight so that bow and stroke riggers are on the same side, with the others alternating in pairs.
    The ratio of the recovery time to the drive time. The recovery time should always be longer than the drive time (how much longer I won't say ... as someone wrote, the idea is to `move the boat on the pull through (or drive) and take a ride (i.e. relax) on the recovery without sacrificing the very speed that they have generated').
    The number of strokes per minute. Also known as stroke rating.
    Set (set of a boat)
    The definition that I think comes closest to what rowers mean by the set of a boat is `form or carriage of the body or of its parts'. In this case the `body' consists of the shell and the rowers. Items that can affect the set of the boat are the rower's posture, hand levels, rigging (the favorite culprit ... especially with the more advanced rowers), timing at the catch and release, and outside conditions such as the wind. It is not unusual for rowers within a shell not to agree on what needs to be done to establish a `good' set, i.e. a level, stable shell that will provide the basis for that symphony of motion.
    Any abrupt deceleration of the shell caused by some uncontrolled motion within the shell; an interruption in the forward motion of the shell. The coxswain is probably the most acutely aware of this abrupt deceleration and it has been known to cause whiplash in some extreme cases.
    A problem encountered by a rower when his or her oar gets `stuck' in the water, usually right after the catch or just before the release, and is caused by improper squaring or feathering. The momentum of the shell can overcome the rower's control of the oar. In more extreme cases the rower can actually be ejected from the shell by the oar.
    Jumping the slide
    Another problem encountered by a rower when the seat becomes derailed from the track during the rowing cycle.
    Missing water
    The rower starts the drive before the catch has been completed (or even started in some cases). This is also referred to as rowing into the catch.
    The fault of carrying the hands too low during the recovery especially when a rower dips his or her hands just prior to the catch (i.e. a sort of winding up). This usually results in the blade being too high off the water's surface.
    Washing out
    The fault of rowing the oar out of the water, i.e. the blade comes out of the water before the drive is finished.

    5. Race Formats

    What are the usual racing distances and divisions?

    The races have separate divisions---Men's (M), Women's (W), heavyweight (HWT) or open, lightweight (LWT) etc., then divided up into 8+'s, 4+'s, 1x's, 2x's and so on. So for a typical regatta you might see separate races scheduled for M8+, W8+, M4+, W4+ down (or up---depends on your cup of tea) to W1x and M1x. There may be separate heavyweight and lightweight divisions that would require a weigh-in for the lightweights some time before the start of the regatta. You may also see divisons according to experience (novice, varsity), age (junior and masters) ,and skill level (senior A, B, Elite, etc.)


    The standard international racing distance is 2000 meters (preferably straight) and the courrse usually has six shells racing against each other in their separate designated lanes which may or may not be marked by buoys. These races can take anywhere from 5 1/2 to 8 1/2 minutes depending on boat class, weather conditions, water current and the physical condition and experience of the rowers.

    Other racing distances are 1000 meters for the older guys and gals (Masters) and 1500 meters for the Junior age division (high school). A description of the starting procedures is in a separate following section. Also, there is a match style (i.e. races with two boats head to head in a single elimination format for each division) racing at a some regattas. The Henley Royal Regatta in England comes to mind.

    From J. Wangermann: The standard regatta format in the UK at club level is two-lane elimination, normally over four rounds. The reason is that all the rivers in the UK are far more narrow and twisty than in the US (e.g. the Cam, Isis, Avon, Thames above London) etc. For similar reasons, the length varies. Many regattas are two day affairs, the first day being a sprint over 500 or 600m, the second day being a long-distance affair of 800-1500 m.

    Starting Procedures

    (a brief description from R. Chen)

    Crews are expected to be at their starting stations two minutes before the scheduled time of the race. Once the boats are locked on, the judge at start will supervise the alignment process. When all crews are level, the Starter will then poll the crews by calling their name. When all crews have been polled, the Starter raises a red flag, and says; "Attention!". After a clear pause the starter shall give the start by dropping the red flag quickly to one side and simultaneously saying: "GO".

    In windy conditions, the Starter may dispense with polling the crews and use a "quick start". Here, the starter says "Attention!" and if no crew responds, immediately raises the red flag and gives the starting commands. In a FISA regatta, once the red flag is raised in a quick start, hands are no longer recognized, but in the US, the Starter will still recognize hands.

    In the US, the procedure of last resort is the `countdown start.' The Starter dispenses with further polling, and counts down "5-4-3-2-1 Attention! GO!" Once the countdown starts, hands are not recognized, and the crews should use the five second countdown to point their boats.

    Crews can be assessed a warning for a false start, for being late to the start, or for traffic rules violation. A crew that receives two warnings in the same race is excluded from the event.

    If a crew breaks equipment in the first 100 meters of the race, it should stop rowing and signal to the umpire, who will then stop the race. Broken equipment under FISA and USRA rules does not include a crab (fausse pelle) or jumped slide.

    Once the race has begun, the Umpire (Referee in US or Canada) follows in a launch. He/she will instruct a crew only to avoid a foul or safety hazard. If a crew is about to interfere with another crew, the umpire will raise a white flag, call the crew's name, and drop the flag in the direction where the crew should move. If a crew is about to hit a known obstruction (such as a bridge abutment) the umpire will raise a white flag, call the crew, and yell "Obstacle!" or simply "Stop!" If the umpire needs to stop the entire race, he will ring a bell or sound a horn, wave a red flag, and call out "Stop!" if necessary.

    A crew that wishes to protest the race must raise a hand after it crosses the finish line and lodge the protest with the umpire. This must be followed by a written protest accompanied by $25.00 USD (50 Swiss Francs internationally). A jury will decide the protest after a hearing. If the hearing goes in the favor of the protest then the $25.00 is returned.

    Head Races

    These races , which are generaly held in the fall (US) or early spring(Europe) are about 2.5-3 miles long and the boats are started in their respective divisions separately at 10 second intervals. These things are usually conducted on a river with an ass ortment of bridges and turns that can make passing quite interesting.

    Note: (from M. Mccrohan): The Heads here (in Ireland) are at the start of the year, between January and the end of March, and are the long distance races that give an indication of the effectiveness of the winter's stamina training. (Remember we do not have to contend with frozen rivers etc. during the winter.) Most of our heads would be from 2-5 miles long. Our local Head here in Galway is 3.5 miles, and is held on St. Patrick's weekend ...


    (As someone pointed out, this is the Cambridge version, but it should do just to get an idea of what bumps racing is about.)

    The bumps are a way of racing eights. It all basically comes from rowing on a river which in most places is only just wide enough for two boats to pass.

    The basic idea is simple: you get a division of 17 (or 18) boats who start in a column with 1.5 lengths of clear water between them, and when the start gun goes the aim is to bump the boat in front by making up enough distance for physical contact between the two boats. The two boats involved in the bump drop out of the race by pulling in to the side of the river and leaving the course clear for anyone behind (if the boat behind a bump catches the boat in front of a bump this is an overbump).

    In the next day of racing the two crews swap start positions. There are 4 days of racing in each set of bumps, and positions are held over from year to year. Divisions are raced in reverse order (i.e. worst first) and the crew ending top of a division (because it started there and successfully `rowed over' the whole course, or because it bumped the crew who started head (top) of the division) gets to row as the 17th boat in the next division so if they bump there they move up a division the next day. The aim of the whole thing is to end up top of the 1st division `Head of the River', or to go up four places (i.e. a bump each day).

    6. Ergometers

    What do most rowers prefer and what does CRASH-B stand for?

    `The ergometer simulates the physical demands of rowing, packaging the pains with none of the amenities that make it worthwhile ...'
    - from Kiesling's The Shell Game.

    Most rowers use the Concept II rowing ergometer, but several other brands exist. Other brands prefered by rowers are the "Water Rower" which claims to closer simulate the feel of rowing on water and the RowPerfect. Obviously ergometers don't float, but the Concept II is probably the primary off season training device for rowers. Concept II's latest, and most common model is the Model C, but many of the older models, Model B, still exist.

    Settings (Model B)

    Going from the `lightest' to the `heaviest' settings:

      gear wheel/vent completely closed lightest Large gear sheel/vent
      completely open | Small gear wheel/vent completely closed | Small
      gear wheel/vent completely open heaviest 

    The newer Model C settings has just one vent adjustment that ranges from 1 to 10. Setting 4 is equivalent to the lightest setting of the Model B.

    Most rowers include weight workouts in their training programmes.

    CRASH-B (Charles River Association of Sculling Has-Beens or Charles River All Star Has-Beens) Sprints

    The penultimate event of the ergometer racing season in the winter months. It's also referred to as the World Indoor Rowing Championships and is held in Cambridge/Boston area in mid February. The usual 'distance' (as measured on an electronic monitor) is 2000 meters and the winning times range from ~5:50(open men) to ~8:00 (women coxswain).The prize for a winning time is a claw hammer.

    A little history from G. Knauth:

    CRASH-B stands for the Charles River All-Star Has Beens, a pseudonym coined by the founders, members of the 1980 US Olympic Rowing Team. The pseudonym coined by the founders was Charles River Association of Sculling Has-Beens, later changed I'm told so as not to put off sweep rowers.

    CRASH-B is an organization, headed by Kurt Somerville, that plans and runs the regatta, which takes place at Reggie Lewis Athletic Ctr. & Indoor Track, Roxbury Community College, Boston, MA. Concept-II supplies the ergs and brings winners of satellite regattas to the CRASH-B Sprints. Community Rowing of Boston helps sell the ergs at a $50 discount when the regatta is over. For current information about CRASH-B and sattelite regattas, check Concept II's Website.

    7. General Safety and Maintenance

    • All rowers must be confident swimmers
    • Never lean a capsized boat. Always stay with the shell. If land is near, swim the boat to shore. Use the universal rowers distress signal of standing an oar up into the air, blade end up.
    • Always stay on the traffic pattern. Remember, this pattern is for rowers only. Blind boats, any boat without a coxswain, has right-of-way to a cox'd boat. Never demand the right-of-way. The boat with the most maneuverability must yield to another water craft. Depending on the circumstances, rowers must yield the right-of-way to other water crafts.
    • Keep a good look out for buoys, boaters, fishermen and especially swimmers
    • If your involved in an accident, stop and summon help for any injured person. NOTE THE REGISTRATION NUMBERS ON THE BOW OF ANY BOATS INVOLVED IN AN ACCIDENT OR UNSAFE ACT. Report any occurrence to the Aquatic Center Staff.
    • Keep an eye on the Weather. If conditions become unsafe, return to the Aquatic Center. In extreme conditions, land the boat on the nearest shore and call the Aquatic Center or wait for better conditions. If you are unsure of the conditions, ask an Aquatic Center employee.
      • FOG: If you can not see all of Rivera Drive shoreline (condo-corner), Vacation Island and the Islandia Hotel, rowing is not allowed.
      • WIND: If the wind is blowing above 10 mph (a flag blowing straight out ), rowing will not be allowed.
    • No horseplay around the equipment or on the wet rowing pad.
    • Always carry the oars, blade first, low at your waist.
    • When the boat is in the water, never step inside a rigger, nor carry the boat with your head in the riggers. If may knock you over, unsuspectingly.


    • If you notice an item that needs repair or just some attention, please report it to an Aquatic Center employee or complete a repair report form, found under the sign-out podium in the rowing center. Completed repair forms should be left on the sign-out clip board.
    • Any rowing causing damage due to negligence will be responsible for the repair of the damage. Please report any occurrences to an Aquatic Center employee.
    • After every row, be sure to rinse all equipment off with fresh water. Flush water both inside and outside of the boats. Dry off equipment with towels, and return all items to their storage places. Store all boats with the oar locks in, toward the boat.
    • If a towel is sandy or drops on the concrete of the rowing pad, please thoroughly rinse it out before placing it on the equipment.
    • When in the rowing shells, do not place your feet on the bottom of the boat, if changing location of your foot stretchers or putting socks on, rest your feet on the boat gunwales.
    • Check your foot stretcher to be sure they are tight before your row.

    8. Books, Magazines and Further Information

    This is by no means meant to be complete.


    Assault On Lake Casitas by Brad Lewis.

    The Shell Game by Steve Kiesling.

    The Amateurs by David Halberstam.

    The Nuts and Bolts Guide to Rigging by Mike Davenport.

    The Complete Steve Fairbairn on Rowing by Steve Fairbairn.

    Complete Book of Rowing by Steven Redgrave.

    Rudern: GDR text of Oarsmanship by Dr. Herberger.

    High Performance Rowing by John McArthur.

    Rowing Against the Current : On Learning to Scull at Forty by Barry S. Strauss.

    Mind over Water : Lessons on Life from the Art of Rowing by Craig Lambert;

    Textbook of Oarmanship : A Classic of Rowing Technical Literature by Gilbert C. Bourne

    The Art of Sculling by Joe Paduda(Editor) and Les Henig (Contributor)

    The Book of Rowing by D. C. Churbuck

    Thomas Eakins : The Rowing Pictures by Helen A. Cooper

    Rowing : The Skills of the Game by Rosie Mayglothling

    Rowing Fundamentals by John A. Ferriss

    Rowing x-pert - an exhaustive rowing bibliography from Germany (in German)



    USRowing Magazine
    201 S. Capitol Ave., Suite 400
    Indianapolis, IN 46225

    Amateur Rowing Association (see below)
    6 Lower Mall
    Hammersmith, London
    W6 9DJ

    Esher, Surrey
    KT10 0BR
    Ph: (0372) 467098

    Independent Rowing News
    PO Box 831, 4 West Wheelock St.
    Hanover, NH 03755
    Fax (603) 643-0606
    Email: info@rowingnews.com

    9. Addresses of Interest

    Who can I contact for more information?

    Just about every major or not so major city I know of in Europe and in the US has at least one rowing club where a person can learn how to row. You don't have to have rowed in college to get involved in rowing. As a matter of fact a substantial percentage of currently active rowers never rowed in high school or college. Any of the National organizations listed below.should be able to provide you with with contacting a local club. See also the link to Row2K.com's list of rowing organizations worldwide in the introduction to this page.

    United States Rowing Association (USRA)
    201 S. Capitol Ave.
    Suite 400
    Indianapolis, IN 46225
    Ph: (317) 237-5656

    Masters Rowing Association
    4 Kelly Drive
    Boathouse Row
    Philadelphia, PA 19130
    (FAX) 215-232-4778

    Amateur Rowing Association --- England (ARA)
    6 Lower Mall
    W6 9DJ
    Ph. (081) 748 3632
    Fax (081) 741 4658

    Scottish ARA (SARA)
    Peter Morrison, 46 Churchill Drive
    Bridge of Allan
    Stirling FK9 4TJ.
    (h) 01786 833029,
    (w) 01307 461000

    Rowing Australia
    3rd Floor, 224 Victoria Rd
    Drummoyne, NSW 2047
    Telephone: +61 2 9181 5144
    Facsimile: +61 2 9181 5025

    Rowing New Zealand
    P.O. Box 677br&gt
    New Plymouth, New Zealand
    Fax (06)758-0754

    FISA (Federation Internationale des Societes d'Aviron)
    3653 Oberhofen am Thunersee
    Ph: 41-33-435053

    10. Rowing Camps

    Craftsbury Sculling Center
    (for all experience levels from beginners to advanced scullers)
    Box 31-R
    Craftsbury Common, VT 05827
    Ph: 802-586-7767
    Email: stay@craftsbury.com

    Northeast Sculling and Rowing School
    (Bill Miller --- coordinator/director)
    P.O. Box 2060
    Duxbury, MA, 02331
    Ph: 781-934-6192
    Email: email@rowcamp.com

    Rocky Mountain Rowing Club (RMRC)
    Cherry Creek Reservoir
    Cherry Creek State Park, Denver, Colorado
    Ph: 303-331-2860
    Email: info@rockymountainrowing.com

    Occoquan Boat Club Summer Camps
    (For all experience levels and ages)
    Occoquan Reservoir, Sandy Run Regional Park
    Fairfax, Virginia
    Email: Contact Us

    Charles River Rowing Camps
    (Highschool age only)
    CRRC, P.O. Box 380441
    Cambridge, MA 02238-0441
    Email: hlparker@fas.harvard.edu or eholeary@fas.harvard.edu

    Lake Union Crew (Seattle WA)
    (Juniors only )
    11 East Allison St.
    Seattle, WA 98102
    Ph: 206-860-4199
    Fax: 206-860-7826
    Email: julie@lakeunioncrew.com

    All American Rowing Camp
    (Masters and High Schoolers )
    Corporate: 4800 North McCoy Road, Bloomington, IN 47408
    Camps: West Virginia University Campus
    Morgantown, West Virginia
    Email: mwilson@vespoli.com

    Georgetown Rowing Academy (Washington DC)
    (for boys and girls age 13-17)
    Tom Sanford, Camp Director,
    Mcdonough Gym
    Washinton DC 20057
    Ph: 202-687-443
    Email: sanfordt@gunet.georgetown.edu

    Nike Rowing Camps
    (for boys and girls)
    Choose from many university locations throughout the US
    Ph: 800-645-3226
    Email: requests@USSportsCamps.com

    Marietta College Rowing Camp
    (for ages 12-16)
    Marietta, OH
    Ph: Chris Pucella 740-376-4515
    Email: pucellac@marietta.edu

    Navy Rowing Camp for Coaches, Rowers & Coxswainss
    (Girls & Boys ages 13-18)
    United States Naval Academy, Annapolis Maryland
    39 Fox Run Way
    Arnold, Maryland 21012
    Ph: 410-293-9292
    Fax: 443-782-0296
    Email: info@navyrowingcamp.com

    Row As One, Mount Holyoke College
    (Master Women only)
    557 Mt. Auburn St
    Watertown, MA 02472
    Ph: 617-924-2120
    Fax: 617-924-2126
    Email: info@rowasone.org

    Three Rivers Rowing Assoc., Pittsburgh, PA
    (All ages, genders and skills)
    300 Waterfront Drive
    Pittsburgh, PA 15222
    Ph: 412-231-TRRA
    Email: trra@ThreeRiversRowing.org

    Brian Pluckrose and Rosie Mayglothling
    (Residential and non-residential courses, weekly sculling school)
    National Water Sports Centre
    Holme Pierrepont
    Adbolton Lane
    NG12 2LU
    Tel: 060 2821212

© Mission Bay Rowing Association, 2001-2012