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Annapolis Rowing Club's Novice Rowing Program

REGISTRATION WILL OPEN ON SATURDAY JUNE 11, AT 7:00PM!  We wait to open registration until then so that all participants in Learn To Row have an opportunity to get a seat in the Novice Program.  Here is the link to the event page that you register from on June 11: 

Register for the 2016 ARC Novice Program - 6/13/2016

Check out last season's participants!

Here is a video taken at our Learn To Row Class #3, on May 10th, 2015.  This is a group of new rowers sandwiched in the middle six of this eight-person boat that all just learned to row for the first time the day prior.  This video shows them rowing "by all eight" for the first time.  They were recovering with blades on the water for added stability and balance.  Their timing looks great as they are just learning how to all move up the slide together as one boat.  Great job!!
Video taken 5/10/15 on day 2 of Learn To Row Session #3!

Upon completing an ARC Learn-to-Row session, you will be eligible to enroll in the ARC Novice Program.  Information about the Program is outlined below.

Registration will open Saturday, June 11th at 7:00 p.m.



Step 2: Novice Rowing Program

After you complete LTR, you will be ready to decide if rowing is 'for you' and if you're ready to commit to a more intensive (and fun!) training plan to become proficient on the water. The ARC Novice Program is a comprehensive 9-week session consisting of three (3) practices per week. Participants who commit to the program and complete it become well versed in all facets of sweep rowing including safety, technique, training and competition. The Novice Program is a fantastic way to 'get into' this great sport.

Novice Program Fee: $385 payable to Annapolis Rowing Club.  All participants of the Learn To Row classes this year will receive an email letting you know in advance when registration opens so everyone has a fair shot at getting the slots. 

Payment must be made electronically at the time of registration.  No Refunds will be given once the program has begun.

For further information, contact Denise Bettinger

Program Practice Information: 

The ARC Novice Program will begin on June 13th with practices continuing through August 13th.

Monday and Wednesday Evenings:     6:00pm - 8:30pm

Saturday Mornings:                              8:15am - 10:45am

*Note: First class is an orientation day, and therefore it is requested that all registrants plan to attend this very important session. We understand that scheduling conflicts are inevitable, but please notify us immediately, if you cannot attend this important first day. 



Annapolis Rowing Club @ Gingerville Yachting Center.  Click HERE to map directions to our location.


In addition to completing one (1) LTR session, all Novice Program participants will be required to sign an acknowledgement confirming their ability to swim as well as a US Rowing liability waiver.


Admission to the ARC Novice Program is conducted on a first-come-first-served basis, however, the number of participants is limited to 32 due to equipment, coaching, and club volunteer availability. 


In order to to successfully complete the ARC Novice Program, you must:

  • Participate in a minimum of 50% of the Novice practices. More is better!
  • Participate regularly. While the ARC Novice Program is structured to provide flexibility for individuals to miss practices due to vacation, family and work commitments, etc., regular practice and repetition is the biggest key to success in the program. Participants should make an effort to attend as many practices as possible.
  • Favorable evaluation by the head coach, assistant coach and club vice president. All participants will be evaluated at the end of the program with both a written and physical test in regard to both their rowing and safety proficiency. Those who are successful will be invited to join ARC as regular members may row with established ARC groups. Novices who participate regularly will be well prepared for the written and physical tests.
  • While our track record of advancing participants through the Novice Program is exceptional, there have been individuals in the past who have not successfully completed the program. In such instances, the participant may be encouraged to repeat the Novice Program or to consider another more suitable sport.

What to Expect in the ARC Novice Program

And what will be expected of you!?

  1. Be Safe. Participants are to follow ARC's established safety procedures and coach's instructions.
  2. Hard Work. Be mentally and physically prepared to work at each practice
  3. Honoring your commitments. When you sign up to row, be there.
  4. Be prepared to row in the rain (but not lightning or dangerous conditions).
  5. Being on time, arriving 15 minutes before the start of each practice.
  6. An open mind - be ready to learn!
  7. Conditioning - getting yourself and keeping yourself in good physical shape.
  8. Be actively coached and expected to improve.
  9. Keep your progress in perspective. Some practice will go really well, others will not!
  10. Fun and fulfillment will happen naturally. You'll make plenty of new friends, too!

Please note that rowing is a physically demanding sport that uses your entire body. Rowers are required to carry boats and oars at each practice, which requires enough strength to lift at least 35 pounds over head. If you are unable to squat, put weight on your knees, or have concerns about your participation in boat carries, please contact us directly. Before starting any exercise program, please consult your physician or qualified health professional. 

Quotes and Comments from past ARC Novice Participants

“I did the LTR and Novice Programs to accomplish something on my bucket list. Little did I know that I would find a bunch of new friends, lose 15 lbs from the rowing, and become involved in an amazing sport.  I highly recommend it!!” 

“I joined "Learn to Row" with no experience and no expectations, but it looked like a fun and different way to get a workout.  I didn't even know if I could do it, but I wanted to give it a try.  I soon found that I LOVED it.  With the support of the coaches, members of the club and my fellow rowing boat mates, I gained the confidence and experience to be an equal part of a great team.  Now, I forget that I'm getting a GREAT workout when I'm having fun rowing with many new friends.”

“Came with two buddies with the simple idea to do LTR, check it off the bucket list, been there, done that, and go have breakfast at McGarvey's afterwards.  Then, we caught the rowing bug, and that led to Novice and last year on to full membership.  Along the way, I've met some nice folks who have become good friends.  What a great sport!”

“After 25+ years of running solo 3-5 miles three to four times a week, I was starting to feel the accumulated pounding in my legs and back.  I needed a new sport to stay in shape.  I have found rowing on the water to be a far better work out with the added benefit of being part of a team working together in the boat.” 

“The camaraderie that developed with my fellow rowers and coaches was a pretty nice, welcome, and a rather unanticipated wonderful benefit as I progressed from LTR to Novice.  We worked hard on the water to gain a new skill set, and had a lot of fun in the process.” 

“ One of the enduring lessons we learned early on our Novice year is that rowing is a lot like one would want to live life- you throw away the bad strokes,  and cherish the good strokes.”


“ Some of the best moments on the water are the mornings rowing out just before daybreak when the calm water glistens like diamonds, and the evenings on the water rowing back to the dock after a good workout coming back down the river watching a glorious sunset.”


“One of our most experienced rowers and valued LTR and Novice class mentors would challenge us to feel the run of the water past the hull of the boat, and to be one with the other rowers in the boat. When that happens, and it's not a given thing, it's like magic and the boat seemingly leaps forward in the water.”