Competitive and recreational
The squad trains throughout the year to improve technique, strength and stamina with training times set by the Men’s Captain, Rowing Committee and coaches, taking equipment availability and commitment into account.
Volunteer coaches and more experienced rowers help out to share their knowledge and experience with crews. Weekend training in all seasons is dependent on the river conditions and winter night-time outings on the river are restricted to coxed boats only, with competent crews and appropriate conditions. Between September and March the squads have circuit training which is run at local facilities.
We ask all rowers to bring a change of kit, adequate layers of clothing during the winter months and drinking water to each session and to ensure that they adequately warm up before and stretch down after training, to minimise the risk of injuries. All senior rowers have periodic ergo tests to assess their progress.
Rowing competition is in three forms: Heads, Sprints, and the more traditional Regatta racing over a longer course. Heads are processional races over several kilometres against the clock, usually held between September to early April. At St Neots we hold one for small boats (fours and less) every October. Sprints are usually raced over 500m. A longer course can mean anything up to 2,000m for international competition. Regattas are held between April to early September with boats starting side-by-side and, after racing in their lanes, the first to reach the finish either wins the event or progresses to the next round on a knock-out basis. In Masters racing, an older crew may be given a number of seconds’ head-start over a younger crew.
All rowers who wish to compete must obtain annual membership from British Rowing and entries for racing will be made by the Captain or coaches; no member may enter themselves for any event without obtaining the agreement of the Captain.
Rowers are expected to de-rig, load and unload trailers, and re-rig boats after each event. Each race incurs a seat cost which can range between £10 and £12 and rowers are expected to keep their racing account in credit to cover these costs to ensure their race entries. There are also small fees for trailer towing based on the locality, to cover fuel costs.
If you’d like to know more about the terms used in rowing please download our Guide to Rowing on the left.