National Learn to Row Day Is June 1: Visit Your Local Boat Club!
Saturday, June 1, 2019, marks the 18th annual celebration of National Learn to Row Day, an occasion sponsored by U.S. Rowing and Concept2 in an effort to bring the joy of rowing to people of all ages and fitness levels.
Each year, rowing clubs and health clubs across the country host great workshops, classes and exhibitions to increase awareness of the sport and attract new participants. Curious to test the waters? In search of a new activity that both connects you to nature and provides an excellent full-body workout? Helping to guide a young adult toward a challenging (and rewarding) new sport? Now is the time to see if rowing is for you or a friend or family member.
As a company founded by rowers for rowers, RowingPad is passionate about spreading the good word about our sport and its many benefits. To celebrate National Learn to Row Day this year, we are offering free domestic shipping on all purchases—including our newest introduction, boat pads with anti-slip technology—from June 1 to June 10. (Use the code RPLTR19 at checkout.)
With its many scenic waterways and outdoor enthusiasts, New Hampshire is a prime region for rowing, and many local rowing clubs go to great lengths to connect with potential new participants in their communities. Check out our roundup of these wonderful Learn to Row events taking place June 1, 2019. (Tell them your friends at RowingPad sent you!)
Not in our neck of the woods? Use U.S. Rowing’s map to locate the 2019 “Learn to Row” event nearest you.
Happy rowing to all those out in the boats (or on the ergs) for this year’s Learn to Row! And always remember to grab your RowingPad boat or erg pad before set off on your next rowing adventure.
Join the Great Bay Rowing Club at the Dover Boathouse on River Street from 12 to 4 p.m. for a tour of the new docks and boathouse and special learn-to-row lessons along the banks of the Cocheco River. This wonderful local club, which operates out of both Jackson’s Landing in Durham and Dover and shares facilities with UNH, offers everything from learn-to-row programs and sculling classes for juniors (grades 8 through 12) and adults to competitive racing for all ages and levels.
The newly formed Essex Rowing Association (building on the heritage of the former Essex Rowing Club) is a member-run rowing club committed to bringing rowing opportunities and excellence in rowing back to the diverse communities along the Merrimack River. On Saturday, June 1, rowers ages 12 and up can get insider access with a boathouse tour and guided introduction on that notorious indoor rowing machine, the erg. Then head out to the scenic Merrimack River for a beginner’s taste of on-water rowing. The free event runs from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at 656 Lowell Street.
Those along the more northern reaches of the Merrimack River should head to the Amoskeag Rowing Club Boathouse in Hooksett on Saturday, June 1, for a morning of introductory rowing fun. From 9 to 11 a.m., stop by for a tour of the facilities and some instruction on rowing technique, then hop into a boat for a little on-water lesson. Who knows? You might want to sign up for one of the adult or junior learn-to-row sculling programs on the spot and find yourself participating in the annual Blue Heron Regatta come August. (The club also has a solid FAQ section on its website that might answer any question you have about the sport or the on-water rowing experience in general.)
If you have a young person in your life who has expressed interest in rowing (or perhaps just enjoys the outdoors or water activities in general), head to the Concord Crew event from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturday, June 1. This nonprofit, competitive regional rowing team based on the Merrimack focuses on teaching boys and girls in grades 8 through 12 sweep oar and sculling, and this weekend it’s hosting an open house for both middle and high school students. Take a tour of the boathouse (located at 15 Loudon Road), try out the rowing machines and even head out on the water with some of the club’s experienced rowers and coxswains to get a feel for the sport. The club emphasizes the team aspect of rowing: “All of the students—boys and girls, everyone from varsity first boat to sixth boat—train together, practice together, race together.”
For those along the Merrimack in southern New Hampshire or northern Mass, Greater Lawrence Rowing’s Abe Bashara Boathouse at 1 Easton Street. On Saturday morning, June 1 (contact the club for exact hours, which were not posted yet), the group will be offering free erg demonstrations and instructional rowing out on the water to guests ages 12 and up. Part of the Greater Lawrence Community Boating Program, this club, which was founded in 2006 with the goal of making the sport accessible to as many people as possible, offers year-round programming, low program fees and even offers full scholarships to those who need them. Read the bios of the highly experienced coaches and feel inspired to make your mark in the Merrimack Valley rowing community.
Squam Community Rowing was established in 2013 to bring together individuals with a passion for rowing, maintain lifelong fitness and protect the natural beaut and peaceful character of Squam Lake. SCR’s “Learn to Row” event is unique from the others on this list in that it requires advance registration and costs $75 per participant. But in an area defined by its beautiful bodies of water, the cost seems well worth it to explore rowing—and it includes your lesson that day, plus 3 additional sessions with an experienced rower, and the fee can be applied to a yearly membership should you choose to join. The June 1 event is full, but SCR has planned a second for Saturday, June 29, from 8 a.m. to noon. Claim your spot now to test the waters and consider becoming a part of this growing rowing organization.
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