Training & Racing Commitments

Juniors (Under 13, Under 14 and Under 15) 

Junior Rowers train and compete during Term 4 and 1. Training is a mixture of before and after school sessions as well as Saturday mornings. Training involves both on-water rowing, and off-water technical and fitness sessions. A bus is provided to take rowers to and from each training session. 

Junior Rowers compete in sculling events (two oars each) and race single sculls, double sculls and quadruple sculls. 

These age groups typically compete in all school regattas, with the U15 age group having the opportunity to race in some State Pennant Regattas. 

Senior (Under 16 and Open) 

Senior Rowers train and compete in Terms 3, 4 and 1, with winter training offered in Term 2. These age groups compete at both School and Club Regattas in both sculling and sweep boats. Senior Rowers race in 8s, which is often seen as the pinnacle event in school rowing. Senior Rowers train five to nine times a week and have a rowing camp in January. 


Students should wear school sports uniforms to all training and at Regattas (including weekends).

The rowing uniform which can be purchased at the College’s uniform store consists of:

  • Rowing Zoot Suit (or 'zootie') 
  • Rowing Cap or Visor 
  • Rowing Socks

For warmth, students are encouraged to purchase a plain black pair of thermal tops and bottoms.

Under 13 crews may wear the school polo shirt and sports shorts for Regattas and races.

What To Bring to Training

Being an outdoor sport, students should come prepared for various weather conditions; bring a hat, drink bottle, thermals and spare underpants and socks. Rowers should always have their zoot suit and a spare change of clothes. The rowing zoot suit is designed to allow the rower to row uninhibited from loose clothing. At times the weather may not allow rowers to train on the water, therefore they should bring their sneakers/runners to each session for alternate training. 

Expectations and Procedures 

Crew Selection Policy 

Selection can be a challenging exercise for both rowers and coaches. Crew selection is the decision of the coach and crews are selected based on demonstrated levels of fitness, technical ability, teamwork and attitude. 

Parental intervention can add to the coach’s burden and can distract from the focus of the crew. Parents are not to confront coaches on selection decisions for any reason. Any grievances should be directed to the Director of Rowing who will provide details in line with the the St Virgil's College Complaint Handling Procedure.

For Championships and the Head of the River, the Director of Rowing will have the final decision considering all qualitative judgements and results from prior Regattas. 

Schools Regattas

These Regattas are for all rowers to compete in. Coaches will use a variety of strategies to select the crews for the different classes of boats. Coaches will use observations from training sessions and may trial different combinations of rowers at the regattas. The main purpose of these Regattas is for participation and practice.

State Pennants / State Club Championships

All Year 10 and Open rowers will attend select State Pennants with selected rowers competing in the State Club Championships. There may be opportunities for Year 9 rowers based on selection criteria consisting of on water and off water results.

All Schools Championships / Head of the River

These two Regattas should be compared to a 'Grand Final' for school Rowing. As such, these Regattas are more pointed to results rather than participation. The strongest rowers and crews will be selected to help achieve the maximum available points going towards the Junior or Senior Shields.

School vs Club Rowing 

School Rowing is to take priority over all club Rowing commitments. All students who have registered to row for their College must be available for all training sessions, camps and regattas before taking on other rowing commitments. 

For students wishing to participate in Senior Rowing squads (Under 16 and Open), it is unlikely that they would be able to meet their School Rowing commitments and be actively involved with a Club during the Pennant series, State and National Championships. 

If a student wishes to row with a Club, they must seek special permission from the Director of Rowing to do this concurrently with the Colleges Rowing Program. 

If a student chooses to prioritise Club Rowing over School Rowing, they may be unable to compete for the College at ALL competitions across the entire rowing season, including the National Rowing Championships.