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SDRC Juniors FAQs

What programs are offered?

During the season, we have a middle school squad and a competitive squad. The middle school squad focuses on having fun on the water and learning all the basics of the sport. The competitive racing team prepares to represent SDRC at various regattas throughout the season.

What is the season schedule?

Our season begins in September and runs through May. Regattas for the competitive team occur on weekends throughout the season. The middle school squad may have the opportunity to race at local regattas. During the summer, we have various camps and training opportunities available.

I play another sport, can I row for part of the season?

It is possible to row for part of the season to accommodate other extra-curriculars. Athletes only rowing for part of the season may miss out on regatta opportunities depending on their schedules. 

Who can join?

Our middle school squad is open to 6th-8th graders that want to learn a new sport. Our competitive team is open to 8th-12th graders. No previous experience is necessary for either team.

So 8th graders have a choice?

Yes! 8th graders who are looking for a more recreational introduction to the sport and are not yet interested in competing can join the middle school squad. 8th graders who are looking for a competitive team and can commit to the practice schedule are welcome to join the competitive team. You can find more info about the choice for 8th graders HERE

What is the difference between the novice and varsity squads?

During the fall season, our competitive team is divided by experience level into the novice and varsity squads (men’s and women’s squads for each experience level). The novice squad is composed of athletes in 8th-12th grade in their first year of competitive rowing. The varsity squad consists of athletes who have already completed at least one year of competitive rowing. Novices will train together and race against other novices and varsity athletes will train with and compete against other varsity athletes.

In December, the novice and varsity squads combine into one large men’s team and one large women’s team. Throughout the spring season, competitions will be based on age rather than on experience level. For example, there might be race events for Under 15, Under 16, Under 17 and Youth (any athlete who has yet to complete high school) athletes.

What is the practice schedule?

The middle school squad is co-ed and is broken up into two practice groups. One group practices Mondays and Wednesdays and the other group practices Tuesdays and Thursdays. Both groups practice from 4:15-6:15 pm.

The competitive team is broken up into a women’s squad and a men’s squad. Both squads practice Monday-Friday from 4:15-6:45 pm and Saturday mornings from 8:30-11:00 am. Regattas are held on various weekends throughout the year.

Are all practices mandatory?

Since rowing is a team sport, consistent attendance at practice is critical. When an athlete misses practice, his/her teammates might not be able to row if there aren’t enough athletes to fill out a boat. In addition, missing practice does not allow boats to work together and learn how to adjust to their lineups. This is especially important prior to regattas, when race lineups will practice together. It is also important to understand that missing practice will make it more difficult to progress and build fitness, and you will find it difficult to compete at the highest level with inconsistent attendance. We understand that occasional absences come up, but we ask that you be sure to inform your coach in advance so they can plan accordingly. The middle school squad is more flexible since they do not compete.

What is the cost for the program?

For the 2023-24 season, the middle school program is $275 per month. The competitive program is $485 per month. 

What is included in the monthly dues?

For both squads, the dues cover coaching fees and equipment (boats, oars, rowing machines, coaching boats, etc.). The high school dues are higher to account for costs associated with competitions. These include regatta entry fees, transportation and hotel rooms for certain regattas, and food at races.

There are a few events that only select or qualified athletes attend. These events have an additional cost for participating athletes.

Is financial assistance available?

We do have limited needs-based financial assistance available. If you are interested in completing an application, please email Patrick Kington for more information.

How do I get started?

Email our Juniors Program Director, Patrick Kington, at to get started. You will need to complete registration paperwork and pay the initial fees in order to start rowing.

Boathouse: 1220 El Carmel Place, San Diego, CA 92109 | Mailing address: SDRC Juniors, PO Box 99856, San Diego, CA 92169 | Boathouse Telephone: (858) 488-1893
? 2020 San Diego Rowing Club