right arrow
Examples: Monday, today, last week, Mar 26, 3/26/04
STUDENT GUEST OF THE WEEK: Ethan is a burgeoning tech enthusiast who got accepted into Harvard, Yale, Princeton, Duke, Brown. This week he's answering your questions on how to best craft your application and narrow down your college search/decision process. ASK HIM ANYTHING!
Concerned about how to pay for college amid COVID-19 economic changes? Join us for a webinar on Thu, Apr. 9 at 5pm ET. REGISTER NOW and let us know what questions you have and want answered.
Most of the decisions are in by now. Connect with fellow students and share support for those who didn't get the best news.

How bad of an idea is it to join crew as a high school junior with no prior experience?

MeepMorp1MeepMorp1 2 replies2 threads New Member
I'm just going to preface this by saying that I get that the answer to this will probably be that its a really bad idea and a hard nope on me joining crew.

I'm a high school sophmore right now and I'm looking for a sport to join next year as a junior. At this age, basically all of the organized sports people have been doing since early elementary school with like private coaches and stuff so I'd *really* suck in comparison. Crew is basically the only one that there are still novices in at my age so in theory I'd be able to join it.

That being said, crew seems like something that you need to be really athletic going into which I'm not. I'm not exactly in horrible shape, I run on the treadmill pretty regularly, but calling myself in goos shape would definitely be a stretch (the idea is that joining crew would fix this.) I've also heard that you need to be tall to join crew which im not. I'm 5'0 and abt 100 pounds so big oof there.

I understand that crew is a really big commitment but I'd be willing to put in the time to get not-horrible at it if it isnt a lost cause.

Also, I'm not asking if I'd get good enough to be recruited or anything (sorry, i didnt know which forum group this exactly fit into) I'm just asking if its an ok first sport to join or if you should already be really athletic going into it. I'd really appreciate anyones input.

18 replies
· Reply · Share

Replies to: How bad of an idea is it to join crew as a high school junior with no prior experience?

  • one1ofeachone1ofeach 896 replies17 threads Member
    You sound like perfect coxswain size. I’d say definitely join! Also, can’t you join for sophomore? Crew season hasn’t started yet.
    · Reply · Share
  • gardenstategalgardenstategal 6472 replies10 threads Senior Member
    It's a great sport to take up now. I know two people who started rowing in college who represented the U.S.! While you don't need an outcome like that, it shows that you need not have started years ago.

    Agree with @one1ofeach -- why wait? Join now. You might make a great cox.
    · Reply · Share
  • taverngirltaverngirl 1457 replies38 threads Senior Member
    I say join. M D just joined her college club crew team with no experience!
    · Reply · Share
  • voyagermomvoyagermom 235 replies14 threads Junior Member
    Join, have fun, and be prepared for killer workouts. Anyone who I know who does crew loves it.
    · Reply · Share
  • eb23282eb23282 732 replies19 threads Member
    I know a college Freshman that just joined his college's crew team. He wasn't terrible athletic in HS. He's doing very well.
    · Reply · Share
  • AlwaysMovingAlwaysMoving 368 replies5 threads Member
    Join!

    Crew is the most accessible sport out there. Plus it's a great way to make friends and get in shape.
    · Reply · Share
  • one1ofeachone1ofeach 896 replies17 threads Member
    Also, from a former crew coach - you don’t need to be typically “athletic” to be good at crew. You need to be mentally fierce.
    · Reply · Share
  • ChillDadChillDad 258 replies20 threads Junior Member
    Coxswain is a great spot for you - join! I would recommend reading The Boys in the Boat - the story of the 1936 Gold Medal Olympic team. It's an inspirational story and a primer on crew in general.
    · Reply · Share
  • one1ofeachone1ofeach 896 replies17 threads Member
    ^^GREAT book!
    · Reply · Share
  • politepersonpoliteperson 498 replies4 threads Member
    Definitely give it a try. (Unless the only reason you’re doing it is to impress college admissions officers, which doesn’t sound like it’s the case).
    · Reply · Share
  • recruitparentrecruitparent 68 replies2 threads Junior Member
    Give it a try. It will probably be a good experience for you.
    I do not know much about crew by I have known several that took it up in college with no prior experience. Crew athletes are in good shape but it strikes me as one of the easier sports to take up as there is not the hand to eye coordination required with many other sports, you do not have to be able to run fast, don't have to know how to hit a baseball/softball, skate, etc.
    Good luck!
    · Reply · Share
  • Xavier_DredoXavier_Dredo 29 replies0 threads Junior Member
    My daughters joined together when they were a Senior (D17) and a Freshman (D20) and rowed in the same Novice 4 boat. Both Had no experience and both LOVED it. D20 never had aspirations to row in college, just did it for fun. D17 has excelled and is team Captain this year. She’ s good enough to continue in college but probably won’t.
    · Reply · Share
  • Xavier_DredoXavier_Dredo 29 replies0 threads Junior Member
    edited February 22
    I meant to add it’s a great idea to join! Why wait till next year? You would most likely be competing against other novices.
    edited February 22
    · Reply · Share
  • happy1happy1 23574 replies2338 threads Senior Member
    edited February 22
    If you are interested and if the coach is willing to take you on with no expereince then give it a try! If crew works out that is great -- if not then chalk it up to a trying something new and different (which is what you should be doing in HS).
    edited February 22
    · Reply · Share
  • Cof22momCof22mom 72 replies4 threads Junior Member
    How competitive is the club you are considering rowing with? It can be a very intense sport. Our local club (which regularly competes on national level) works out 5 days a week, sometimes twice a day. Height has a very clear correlation to speed! So at 5’ you would not get a lot of time on the water.
    Becoming a cox may be an option. You need a strong, motivating personality. And although you don’t have to keep up with the athletes, you need to be at all practices.
    If you’re up for it — GO FOR IT! But definitely ask about the time commitment especially in Junior Year.
    · Reply · Share
  • StPaulDadStPaulDad 549 replies2 threads Member
    Everybody joined their first team with no experience. Get moving.
    · Reply · Share
  • LolliCoomassieLolliCoomassie 35 replies1 threads Junior Member
    I say go for it! But if you do, you'll need to be all in, ready to commit to practices 5 days a week and regattas on the weekend. It's like the old army advertisement, "it's the toughest job you'll ever love".

    On my kids' high school rowing team, there are kids of all abilities. Hard-core athletes in the first boats. Hard-working kids that try their best in the 3rd or 4th boats. Regardless of their boat, the kids all have a great time and have made some amazing friendships.

    Don't wait until junior year, join this spring. I'm not sure where you live, but the team will probably be doing land training for a few weeks before they hit the water. You'll have the opportunity to gain some fitness before you get in a boat.

    If you can't start now, try a learn-to-row program over the summer. (You should do this even if you participate in the spring season. LTR is usually sculling with 2 oars which is a terrific skill to have.)

    The only difficulty may be limitations for spots on your team. My kids high school team is very popular, so novices need to go through a 2 week tryout period. Most of them have no experience at all, but coaches look for kids that are fit and coachable. If that's the case, and you don't make the team this spring, dedicate yourself to getting into shape and try again in the fall.

    As many have suggested, you have the right build for a coxswain, and every good coxswain has spent some time rowing. You'll need to learn your crew, understand what your rowers are capable of doing, and know how to motivate them. You'll also study race results, learn about your competition, get to know their race strategies, and learn when to hold your crew back and when to make your move. It's a very thrilling position! If you start now, work hard to learn your craft, and you're good at it...you could very well end up coxing in college.

    Good Luck!
    · Reply · Share
Sign In or Register to comment.

Recent Activity