Your First Time Rowing

What To Wear

Wear clothing that allows you to move freely, but is not too baggy, and is warm enough to keep you comfortable given the day’s weather.
  • Legs: Wear shorts, tights or something like sweatpants. Loose fitting pants are fine also, but jeans are strongly discouraged.

  • Top: Any top that is adequately warm is acceptable, as long as

    • it does not have hand pockets - oar handles tend to get caught in such pockets

    • the tail is not too long, or can be tucked in – long shirt tails get caught in the rollers on your seat, which slides back and forth

  • Feet: Wear a pair of socks, and shoes or sandals that can be slipped off easily. You will wear your shoes when carrying a boat out, and on the dock. Once in the boat, you will stow your shoes and insert your feet into shoes that are permanently installed in the boat. It is possible that your feet may get wet at some point, so wear shoes for which that is acceptable.

  • Hands: We row barehanded.

Other Things To Do Or Bring

  • Sun Protection: If it sunny, a hat or visor with a bill is suggested, along with sunglasses. It is a good idea to apply sunscreen ahead of time and then wash your hands before rowing. During the warmer months we have running water at the boathouse.

  • Water: A modest sized water bottle, like a bike bottle, can be taken in the boat with you.

What To Expect

Your initial experiences will vary somewhat, depending on whether they are a Learn To Row Day, or a club session.
  • Learn To Row Day: We will start with a quick introduction to the people who are going to be helping you, and to our boathouse. You will spend a few minutes going over proper rowing technique on a rowing machine, and get a brief introduction to how the oars work. After this we'll get you in a boat (which boat configuration you are in will depend on how many people we have), and you can practice managing the oar while at the dock. Then we'll get on the water and put it all together! There will be a club motorboat on the water for coaching and safety.

  • Club Session: If your first row is a club session, you will likely get a little dry land one–on–one instruction, and we will then get you in a boat with one or more experienced rowers. If you come with a friend or partner who is also a first–ime rower, we may put the two of you together in a wherry (a very stable boat), to be instructed by another club member who will row along with you in another boat.