Bainbridge Island Rowing
Covered Bridge

BIR Adult Rowing – General Information

Bainbridge Island Rowing offers a variety of sweep and sculling opportunities for both recreation/fitness and racing. Qualified adult members are welcome at all rows. Qualified visitors are also welcome to row for free up to two times. If you want to row with us, please contact Celia Clark, our Adults Program Liaison: Or you can check with our coaching staff if you have questions about which program is best for your experience and skill level. (Note that adult rowers are often referred to as “masters” by USRowing and other rowing organizations.)


COMPETITIVE  – Sweep & Sculling                       

Sessions are open to all adult rowers who would like a fast-paced row focused on increasing the endurance needed for regattas. Practice will include sweep and sculling options depending on the participants. These sessions are a good fit for you if you have a competitive drive and commitment to becoming a top-level rower. Race lineups will be given priority when possible. Coxing and launch driving volunteers will be utilized as needed on a rotational basis. Saturdays are designated race days.


One full year of rowing or coach approval. Ability to hold a stroke rate of 28.


ADULT OPEN (All Levels) –  Sweep & Sculling    

These sessions are open to adults of all experience levels. Emphasis will be on coach feedback, drills, and video review to improve technique and fitness. Practice will include sweep and sculling skills development in preparation for joining one of the other groups. Coxing and launch volunteers will be utilized as needed on a rotational basis.

Prerequisites: Learn to Row class or coach approval



These fitness-based SCULLING only sessions are open to adults of all levels. Emphasis will be on coach feedback and video review. Lineup requests will be honored, when possible, but priority will be given to boats that promote the greatest overall group improvement. Coxing or launch driving volunteers will be utilized as needed on a rotational basis.

Prerequisites: Two months of Novice practice or coach approval.



Participation Requirements

Rowers must complete the following requirements before they can participate in a BIR Adult rowing program.

  • Be at least age 19 with either prior rowing experience or completion of at least one Learn to Row class.
  • Become a USRowing member. Sign up or renew your membership and waiver at the USRowing website. Use club code KRCBC (case-sensitive) to be added to the BIR roster.  The membership levels and fees are as follows:
    • We recommend that all rowers consider a Championship Membership because of the additional insurance coverage that comes with it.
    • If you plan to participate in recreational rowing only and NOT compete in regattas, you may register for a Basic Membership.
    • If you plan to compete in regattas you will also need to add on the “Regatta Package”.
  • Complete all your personal information in your iCrew profile and sign required documents:
    • Sign the BIR Participant Waiver in iCrew.
  • Complete a Float Test (for on-the-water rowing programs): ​This in-the-water task requires you, under the supervision of a certified lifeguard, to tread water in clothing for 10 minutes and don a personal flotation device in the water. BIR will be scheduling group float tests at the onset of each program. Outside of those sessions rowers may ask the BI Aquatic Center to administer a basic swim test, which will suffice until the next available BIR float-test session. Rowers are encouraged to “self-test” their ability to tread water for 10 minutes and put on a PFD during the final minute.
  • Lift 35 pounds overhead and walk up to 50 yards (simulating carrying a boat on your shoulder with assistance from your teammates).
  • Read the BIR Safety Policies and BIR Member Expectations. They contain important information that all rowers must know before going on the water.
  • Volunteer: BIR is a mostly-volunteer organization, and your participation as a volunteer is both required and key to the continuing success of BIR. The goal is two hours of volunteer services from each Master rower for each on-water paid-program month during the calendar year. Coxing in your rowing group does not count.  Coxing or rowing with a Learn To Row class, group work parties to clean and service our boats, launches, and boathouse do count, as does helping with key events like our Grand Old Fourth booth and One-Call-For-All envelope stuffing.
  • Rowers who desire to take out a BIR-owned single/double/pair without a launch on the water are required to complete a flip test. 
  • For those who are interested in improving sculling skills, a captain’s test is available here: Captain’s Test Form.


Questions? Email our Adult Program Liaison, Celia Clark: