How to get involved as a novice - and want to stay
Many young athletes are taken to thrown into the mix of many sports as a child, and grow up playing soccer, baseball, basketball, or football. However, most rowers don’t begin until high school or just before. The sport simply doesn't cater to a very young audience, however, when athletes do get involved, unlike many of those other sports they often find a sport that they can hold onto for life.
Getting involved as a novice isn’t always easy. Competitive selection processes at some clubs have some novices shying away from the idea of a bullhorn blasting commands, while some other would-be oarsmen simply have a hard time finding a location. Learn-to-row days can be a great introduction, and some rowers are hooked from the moment they find connection to the water.
It’s important to make certain that the process of entering rowing is a healthy one. Rowing can be an incredibly enriching experience, one that can instill lessons of teamwork, confidence, and self-motivation. Entering the sport, and finding a program that can allow for these values to permeate the training plan, without overwhelming or overly stressing an athlete, is important in the development of that athletes ability and desire to continue.
Whether a rower tries a few months, a few years, or finds a lifelong passion, an essential factor in their progression and ability in and out of sport is their entry to rowing. Work to make this process a formative and exciting one, and you may have nurtured a lifelong passion.