We welcome juniors aged 12-18 to row for fun, or to compete at local events. We also provide the opportunities for junior rowers to compete at regional, national or international levels.
Designed to provide juniors and parents/carers with the info you need about the club and rowingMore Info
Welcome to Exeter Rowing Club Junior Squad.
This information is designed to provide junior members and their parent/carer with useful information/links about the Junior squad and rowing.
See details of the Club’s history.
Information to follow.
We encourage people to have a go at rowing whatever their age and ability. The Junior Learn to Row is aimed at 12 to 16 year olds and is run by one of our experienced Junior coaches, Tim Spencer.
If you are interested in learning to row you will need to complete an on line application form and your name will be placed on a waiting list. Learn to Row training sessions take place on Tuesdays after school and Sunday mornings. Beginners are offered 3 free trial sessions before being asked to pay the annual membership subscription.
The aim is for new rowers to complete their British Rowing level 1 within 6 months and move to rowing on the river/canal.
Exeter Rowing Club Junior membership
You can apply to ERC to be a Junior member at any point during the year. If the squad is full due to capacity, you will be placed on a waiting list and contacted by the Junior Coordinator when a place becomes available.
Membership gives juniors rowers access to a range of boats, ergo machines and many hours of coaching.
Please fill in our enquiry form here if you are interested in joining the club.
Find out more about club membership here.
British Rowing membership
It is a requirement of ERC that all junior members have a valid British Rowing membership. It is the member’s responsibility to ensure that they have a valid British Rowing membership and provide the membership secretary with their British Rowing membership number
Details of British Rowing membership here.
It is a requirement of the ERC Junior membership that all junior members and their parents/carers read the club rules, policies and relevant codes of conduct and abide by them. Members and their parents/carers will be asked to confirm this when completing the on line membership form.
We appreciate that there is a lot to read and digest but we hope you understand that these rules are essential to help ensure the safety and enjoyment of the club for all our members.
See also the full list of club’s rules and policies.
A Junior Boys and Junior Girls Captain are selected each year. The new captains are voted in each year and begin their term around the beginning of September alongside the new rowing season.
See more details of their roles, application form and criteria for applying.
ERC is fully committed to safeguarding and promoting the wellbeing of all its members and ensuring that everyone who participates in rowing can do so in an enjoyable and safe environment. To safeguard and protect members we work within the British Rowing guidelines
- Members, coaches, club officials and parents/carers associated with the club should, at all times, show respect and understanding for the safety and welfare of others.
- Junior members are encouraged to be open at all times and to share any concerns or complaints that they may have about any aspect of the club with their coach or, if that is difficult or inappropriate, with the Junior Coordinator (JC) or Club Welfare officer (CWO). The CWO is responsible for advising on child protection matters and for coordinating action with the club on receipt of any concerns or referrals.
- The club will not tolerate any form of bullying. If bullying does occur, rowers or parents/carers should tell the CWO, JC or any member of the committee.
- ERC cannot deal with issues/concerns that occur outside the club and are not rowing related. For example, if there is an incident at school between you and a friend who is also a member of the club, this will need to be dealt with by the school and not the club.
- Photographs of the JC and CWO are on the club board in the club house along with contact details. They aim to be as visible and approachable as possible and are often around the club and at events.
Details of the ERC full welfare policy.
Full details of the club’s anti-bullying policy here.
ERC is strongly committed to encouraging our member to take part, but the health, well- being and safety of each individual is always our paramount concern.
See our Health and Safety Policy.
Rowsafe on the British Rowing web site provides safety advice to rowers, clubs, events and anyone else who takes part in rowing.
Watch these useful videos:
At ERC we strongly believe that rowing should be open all and that everyone is treated fairly and with respect. We want our members to be able to enjoy the sport in an environment free from the threat of intimidation, harassment or abuse.
We expect our members to treat others with kindness, respect and consideration at all times, irrespective of their age, gender, disability, race, ethnic origin, nationality, colour, parental or marital status, pregnancy, religious belief, social status, sexual orientation or political belief.
Full details of the club’s Equality Policy.
ERC adopts the British Rowing Equality Policy
We have a private Facebook group for current junior members, their families and club officials, We use this to share event photos, videos of training sessions and fun stuff.
The Junior Squad is run by very experienced coaches and is divided into three sections:
Learn to Row
The learn-to-row group will be carried out from 9am – 12 noon on a Sunday and 4.30pm – 6pm on a Thursday. This is aimed at age groups between 12 years old and 17 years old. The main aim of this section is to give young athletes a taste of how enjoyable rowing can be by learning the basic technique of sculling. Athletes will be offered 3 free taster sessions initially to enable them to see if they like it. Athletes can then choose whether they would like to join ERC as junior members. Following the learn-to-row period, athletes will progress into the Development Squad.
The Development group is a pathway taken by a variety of athletes following a learn-to-row course or during times within their junior squad membership where they have less time or ability to commit to performance training or racing. There is scope to change in and out of this group at the end of the rowing season, which is the end of August.
The performance group is for those with racing experience and expectations. The athletes in this group will have the opportunity to do six sessions of training each week. The main four sessions will be Saturdays 8am – 11am, Sundays 8am – 11am, Tuesdays 4.30pm – 6pm, Thursdays 4.30pm – 6pm with additional training set for Mondays and Wednesdays (and stretching at home on Fridays). Where travelling distance or exams make it too difficult to attend, athletes can train at home and send details of scores etc to coaches. Athletes from this group will have race plans to work towards and will train with their crews in the lead-up to races within their plans,
Rowers can progress the groups. Progression will be based on a number of factors including individual rower’s ability, commitment, aims and aspirations.
The coaches meet once a month to discuss:
- the progress, performance, training requirements and needs of the junior athletes;
- relevant guidance updates from British Rowing and the Club;
- which races to enter, crews and boat allocation. For more information about race entries please section 15 Race events, race entries and calendar.
The Junior Squad meet on Tuesday and Thursday afternoons and Saturday and Sunday mornings.
It is important that rowers train within the limits set by their coach which is dependent on age and ability. The following provides some guidance dependent on age.
Sessions per week
Skills and technique
2 water, 1 land
60 min (water); 45mins (land)
2-3 water, 1-2 land
75 mins (water) 45 mins (land
4 water, 1-2 land
J16 (and late starters)
90 mins( water) 60mins (land)
4-5 water, 2-3 land
90 mins (water) 60 mins (land)
4 water, 4 land
It is expected that juniors will:
- attend for training on time and with the appropriate kit
- confirm their intention to attend training sessions via SPOND. To enable coaches to plan each training session we ask that responses to Spond training notifications are completed at least 24 hours before a session.
Exeter Rowing Club is committed to providing young people with a healthy, supportive and fun environment in which they can learn to row and developing those skills. The Exeter Rowing Club Junior Section Pathway is the framework we use to create a safe environment where young people feel happy and supported to develop a desire and passion for rowing and exercise. The pathway is a guide for athletes to see what they can achieve and how they can achieve it with the support of the squad, in a way that best suits their individual needs.
Coaches or committee members of the club will not contact juniors or parents in any other ways apart from email and Spond.
Spond is, a multi-platform service which allows the communication between the coaches/club with the members/parents/carers. This is the club’s means of communication. Junior members and parents will need to download the Spond App on their phone/device and ensure that they read and respond to all relevant notifications .
You will appreciate that coaches need to plan training sessions, decide on crews and allocate boats so an early response to training, events and parent helper invites is encouraged and appreciated.
Spond will be used to communicate:
- Training sessions – coaches send out invites to the weekly training sessions. Junior members or their parent/carer will need to respond to these invites to confirm their availability by accepting/declining.
- Racing events – coaches/the junior coordinator will send out invites to racing events. Junior members/parents/carers will need to respond to these invites to confirm their availabity so that coaches can decide on crews and race entries. Please note that there are some national events where the race entries close, because of high interest, soon after they open, so it is essential that confirmation of availability for these races is provided as soon as possible.
- Parent Helpers – the club needs parent helpers to assist with training sessions, racing events, social events and fundraising. Please see the section How you can help below for more information. Invites will be sent out to parents as well as the junior members for training sessions and race events. Those parents who are registered with the club as parent helpers will need to respond to these invites, via Spond, to confirm their availability.
- Social and funding raising events. Information and invites regarding social and fundraising will be sent out via Spond and email. Members and parents/carers will need to respond to the invites to confirm their attendance at the event and availability to help where applicable.
- Information/messages about, for example boat loading before an event, ordering kit, etc
If anyone needs help with using Spond please contact junior coach, Tim Spencer
Emails will very occasionally be circulated to communicate news, club notices events and training information/plans.
The club membership secretary will send information such as renewal notices via email.
The club treasurer will send invoices and reminders via email
Club website, Facebook and Instagram
The Club’s website, Facebook and Instagram page have news and information about the club and rowing. There is also a dedicated Facebook and Instagram page for the Juniors which are used to communicate some information on regattas and training and to post photographs. See the club’s social media policy.
Club Notice Board
The clubs notice board is located in the Clubhouse. Although most notices/information are now communicated via social spond/social media/email it is worth checking the board for information and notices regularly.
Speaking to the coaches
The coaches are happy to discuss rowing matters with rowers and their parents/carers. Rowers are encouraged to talk directly to their coach themselves about any questions or concerns they have about their rowing. Parents/carers are asked to make an appointment with a coach if you have an issue to discuss, rather than speak to them whilst they are leading a session. This will ensure a better outcome to the discussion for both parent/carer and coach.
If you have any questions or are worried about something.
If you are worried or unhappy about something or have any questions you can speak to your coach, junior coordinator, club welfare officer, one of the Junior Captains or a member of the committee.
- Competitors must wear a club all in one for racing. A tee-shirt (long or short sleeve) can be worn under the all in one, but all crew members must wear the same colour – this is usually a white.
- It is not compulsory but preferable for members to purchase and where appropriate wear the club tee shirt/hoodie at events.
- Kit is purchased from the club on-line shop
Rowers need to be prepared for anything the elements may throw at them. Training kit can be any make, it does not need to have an ERC logo or be the competition kit.
- All Juniors must wear a hi viz top for all training sessions on the water. They will not be allowed on the water without one.
- Leggings and top-layers are important depending on the weather
- Wind and waterproof outer layer
- Shorts/all-in-one for land training or rowing in the summer. Shorts are not sufficient in cold weather
- Hat – for warmth in the winter and sun protection in the summer
- Sun glasses – even an early morning outing can be sunny
- Poggies (special rowing mittens available online from various sources) can be used to keep hands warm when rowing in the winter; ordinary gloves are not suitable for rowing
- Rigger Jigger
- Small dry water proof bag for kit in the boat as layers are removed/put on during a training session
- A complete change of kit is essential
- Extra dry kit and a towel should be brought to the club at all times in case of capsize and/or adverse weather conditions, especially when more than one training outing can be expected
- A plastic bag is useful to hold wet kit
- Sun cream
- Hand gel
- Rowers who do not have appropriate clothing for the conditions will not be allowed to row. Please ensure that appropriate fitting clothing is worn. Tee-shirts and shorts should not be low-cut. Sports bras are essential for girls. The club rule is for rowers to wear vests/tee-shirts or all-in-ones as a minimum, not just bare chests or sports bras.
- Look after your expensive kit!
- We strongly recommend that all kit is named as it does tend to be left about. Un-named/un-claimed kit is put in a lost property bin. This should be checked regularly as unclaimed kit maybe disposed of.
- Suitable footwear should be worn at all times –bare feet or socks are not allowed for safety reasons.
- Sometimes it is not possible to row due to the river conditions so land training is undertaken. This can involve a run, so it is important that suitable trainers are worn. Muddy trainers should not be worn in the gym or for ergo sessions.
ERC is run entirely by volunteers. As with all sports parental help is essential. We welcome the help of parents/carers, which over the years has proved invaluable to the success of our Junior Squad.
There are a variety of ways in which parents/carers can become involved with the Junior rowing section. In return for your valuable time we hope that you will be rewarded with the opportunity to see your child develop their rowing skills but also meet the other parents. We are a very sociable club and many of the parents, as well as the children, develop lifelong friendships.
Examples of how parents/carers can help out include:
- Spotting (tow path supervision) and boat handling/launching. Given the number of juniors in the squad parent help is essential at on the water training sessions. Unfortunately, if there are not enough parents to help with water training sessions on a particular occasion, that training session will NOT be able to go ahead.
- Helping out at club events, by setting up, tow path supervision, boat handling and launching, baking cakes, serving teas and food. The club aims to run 2/3 major events a year – The Rowing Regatta in July and Head Races in March and December. For more information about the club events please refer to the section below headed ‘Racing events, race entries and race calendar’.
- Fundraising – see social events and fundraising below
- Organising social events – see social events and fundraising below
- Maintenance of the club and its boats and facilities.
- Help with coaching for those who have rowing/coaching experience.
If you would like to offer to help or for more information, please contact the club’s volunteer coordinator
Download the calendar of events:
There are a number of events the club attends each year. When the dates are announced they will be added to the club calendar.
West of England (WEARA) events
ERC is part of the West of England Amateur Rowing Association. A number of clubs affiliated to WEARA, including Exeter host a summer regatta race and in some cases one or two winter head races.
Details of WEARA events are posted on the WEARA website.
Members of the junior squad will be encouraged to enter the WEARA Races which are regarded as a fun day out for the competitors and their families.
Exeter’s Summer Regatta takes place in July and the Head Races take place in March and December.
For the more experienced rowers we encourage participation in national events, which include:
Junior Inter-Regional Rowing Regatta (JIRR) is a competitive but fun event for junior rowers aged between 14 and 16, giving them the opportunity to represent their region at the start of the international pathway.
There is a popular and growing indoor rowing event scene in the UK which culminates in the British Rowing Indoor Championships (BRIC) at the Olympic Park Velodrome in December each year.
The NSR is one of the largest regattas in the junior race calendar in GB. It attracts crews from over 350 clubs and schools with over 5000 competitors.
The regatta takes place in May at Eton Dorney Lake, the London 2012 Olympic venue.
The British Rowing Junior Championships is open to junior rowers from J15 to J18. It gives junior rowers the chance to compete against their peers from all over Britain. It is a 2 day event taking place in July at the National Water Sports Centre in Nottingham.
GB trial and selection events
For those pursuing this route there will be a number of national events that you will need to attend. Your coach will provide details to the relevant juniors and their parents/carers
Travel to events
Juniors and their parents/carers will need to make their own travel and overnight accommodation arrangements for national events
Boats – towing
The boats will need to be towed to all events other than those taking place in Exeter.
Members/parents/carers are responsible for additional costs of events which include
- Seat charges for those racing
At ERC we believe that it important to bring a healthy balance to the sport. Having some down time and being able to socialise with the squad and the wider club is considered to be as important as training.
The club’s Social Secretary will organise various events throughout the year for juniors and their parents/carers. These events are a great opportunity to let your hair down and meet other members of the club and the parents/carers.
If you have any ideas for social events and or fundraising, please contact the Club’s social secretary