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Program overview
Class itinerary

The best ideas usually begin with, "I've always wanted to try..."  

If you've always wanted to try rowing, here's your chance!! No prior rowing or boating experience needed. Come join us and row the beautiful Grand River with some of our experienced coaches and rowers.

Our Learn to Row Program

You will be taught by our experienced coach and volunteer rowers. The program will focus primarily on teaching the rowing technique & proper rowing mechanics to stay safe. You will learn how to scull (rowing with 2 oars), different techniques for steering a boat, and rowing with other traffic on the Grand River. Our goal is for you to feel comfortable rowing on your own or with other people in larger boats. 

What is the time commitment?

Every June, we hold our Learn to Row program. It consists of 8 class sessions over four consecutive weeks, with 2 different class groups held on either Mon/Wed or Tues/Thurs. Each session duration is 2 hours long. We strongly encourage regular attendance to both weekly sessions.  It also makes for easier coaching when all rowers learn the same techniques together and at the same time. However, we do understand that scheduling challenges are a part of life and will work with participants to bring them up to speed with the group. We want everyone to be successful and enjoy the passion of rowing.

  WEEK 1

  • Review the Lansing Rowing Club facilities, the surrounding park, and the river
  • Learn the different parts of the rowing stroke
  • Practice the rowing stroke on land using rowing machines
  • Practice the basics of the rowing stroke in a training barge on the water
  • Learn the different parts of the rowing boats and oars

  WEEK 2

  • Learn how to carry boats and oars
  • Learn how to get in and out of boats safely
  • Row in 4-person and 2-person boats with experienced club members
  • Learn the basics of moving the boat and steering

  WEEK 3

  • Review the mechanics of the stroke and steering
  • Go over river navigation and traffic pattern
  • Watch coaches demonstrate getting back into a capsized boat
  • Practice getting back into a capsized boat - this is optional, but strongly encouraged
  • Row in 1-person boats

  WEEK 4

  • Fine-tune balance, rowing stroke, and technique
  • One-on-one instruction with coaches, as needed
  • Learn how to navigate under a bridge safely
  • Explore the river and have fun!

What to expect? 

Our Learn to Row Program progression:

  • Dry-land education & practicing the movements on ergometers (rowing machines)
  • Rowing in a 16-person training barge
  • Rowing in progressively smaller boats (4 person, 2 person, and 1 person)
  • Exploring the Grand River!

We offer different class options tailored your availability and the class pace you desire. Please see class itinerary for details about what each class will go over and what you can expect to master during that time.

The cost of the four-week class is $285.


There are two class sessions running concurrently:

  • M/W session: June 3rd - 26th, Mondays & Wednesdays 6-8pm
  • Tu/Th session: June 4th - 27th, Tuesdays & Thursdays 6-8pm


While we teach you how to be safe in a rowing shell and what to do if you fall out of the boat and have PFDs available for use, knowing how to swim (tread water) and feeling comfortable in water are prerequisites to take this class. For your safety and the safety of your classmates and instructors, YOU MUST KNOW HOW TO SWIM.

There is no pre-training or fitness level necessary for our program. However, being able to handle moderate exercise, have moderate flexibility and the ability to lift 35 pounds overhead will only make your experience easier. If you have a prior injury and are unsure how that will affect your ability to row, please contact us  Rowers who continue have noted significant cardiovascular and core strength development with time.

We would like to share the USRowing Safety Video as a great resource: 
USRowing Safety 

What should you bring to Learn to Row

Please arrive a few minutes early for each session.

  • Bring water bottle(s). You will be on the water several hours so keeping hydrated is of extreme importance in both hot and cool temperatures.
  • Sunscreen.
  • Sunglasses.
  • Brightly colored cap or visor.
  • Shorts and neon bright tee shirt or form fitting exercise clothing. Loose, baggy shorts will not be permitted; they will get caught in the sliding seat wheels. Hoodies or light jackets without pockets or ones with zippers. In cooler temperatures wear layers that can be easily removed as you warm up. 
  • Socks
  • Sandals or something that can easily be slipped on and off your feet. The boats come equipped with their own shoes.

What is there after completing the Learn to Row program?

Recent graduates from our program are encouraged to continue rowing during our Open Rowing sessions (for an additional fee) until the season ends. Open Row sessions have experienced LRC volunteers to assist with boat selection, carrying boats, and docking. This is a great opportunity for anyone who would like to team up with other club members in rowing in doubles or quads - or just catch-up with your fellow rowers on or off the water. It is a great opportunity to continue to grow your rowing skills.

Is there an age requirement?

Our Learn to Row Program is available to everyone 14 years old and up!! However, individuals between the ages of 14 to 18 years old will need to have a parent/guardian present during the class. Everyone will need to sign a waiver to participate.

Monday/Wednesday class
This is the slower-paced version of our LTR class that focuses on
functional movement and a gradual introduction to the sport of rowing.

Tuesday/Thursday class
This is the faster-paced version of our LTR class that focuses on a moderately-paced
introduction to rowing, followed by more time to row and explore the river as a group.

Classes fill up quickly so sign up today!
Classes fill up quickly so sign up today!