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High School Program

Youth Competitive Team

WHO:  youth aged 14-18 (grades 8-12)

Ready to join the exciting and challenging world of rowing? Great Miami Crew (GMC) is the place for you! Beginners and experienced rowers alike are welcome to join our Youth Competitive Team. Our competitive team includes middle school and high school athletes between the ages of 14 and 18. Beginning rowers compete on our youth novice team for their first year and then advance to varsity level. GMC youth crews compete at the local, regional and national level. Crew members will gain mental and physical toughness by participating in daily practices designed to develop self-discipline, teamwork, fitness, self confidence, and friendships to last a lifetime.

Fall/Winter Season
August 21-November 11, 2023 (Fall)
November 20-March 2, 2024 (Winter)

November 20- December 22. 2023
Monday & Wednesday; 5-7pm
Saturday 7:30-9:30am

Holiday Break 12/25-1/2

January 2-March 2, 2024
 Monday through Thursday 5-7pm
Saturday 7:30-9:30am

Great Miami Crew athletes row an eight in competition
GMRC Varsity Women Compete at Regional Regatta
Varsity Men compete in Youth National Championship

Fall/winter Season Fees

*includes registrations for 4 regattas

Winter Training only Fees

* Does not include registration fees for indoor erg sprints


High School Learn to Row Summer camp

Come join us for a 4 day Learn to Row Camp this summer! No experience needed! This will be a fun introduction to the sport of rowing!


Rowing is unlike any other high school sport.  When you try out for most varsity sports you’re competing for spots on a  team with athletes who have most likely grown up playing that sport-so experience counts.  At GMRC most people show up with the same experience… none!  It’s a level playing field.  Athletics, natural ability, and most of all-a desire to improve will determine who is most successful.  There are no try outs or cuts at GMRC. If you can handle the work and want to keep getting better, then there’s a seat for you in a boat with the Great Miami Crew!

While our Novice and Varsity Youth Team programs are competitive in nature, we strive to create a positive atmosphere for all athletes. We believe that through a good development process and a supportive team environment, athletes of all abilities can be successful in the sport.

The Novice program is a beginner level program designed to introduce young athletes to all aspects of rowing.  Focus is on technique as well as improving fitness. In addition to spending time in rowing shells, athletes will do land training (erging, running and calisthenics) to help improve fitness and technique for on the water training.  



Eligibility:  Rowers must be in 8th-12th grades.  This program is for a rower's first year of participation in regattas.
Program:  Rowers participate in regattas and compete against other Novice boats


     * Your first 2 weeks are without obligation-  Come gROW with US!



Eligibility: Rowers must be in 9th-12th grades.  The rower needs to have completed one year in the Novice program.
Program: Rowers participate in regattas and compete against other Varsity boats.

The Varsity and Novice programs are both classified as competitive and participate in Regattas.  For the summer programs, the grade eligibility is determined by the grade level the student will be entering in the fall.  Note that 8th graders can select the Novice or JRow program based on whether they would like to participate in regattas AND coach approval/prior experience.



  • Often considered the ultimate team sport, rowing is fundamentally built around a commitment to teamwork. Members of a crew learn to trust and work with one another on a very deep level, often forging strong and meaningful friendships in the process.
  • As a sport centered around fitness development and involving both sprint and endurance aspects, rowing has a training regimen that is varied and challenging.
  • Rowing has fewer injuries than most sports, including impacts to the head and the potential for future negative affects on the brain.  Rowing is also lower-impact than most sports.  You might be able to row when other sports are not an option.
  • Colleges are looking for well-rounded students who can succeed at levels of higher learning.  Participation in a sport that takes high levels of commitment like rowing can show college admissions boards that you can handle the difficulties of college. The current growth of rowing at the collegiate level means that scholarship opportunities for talented rowers abound at Division I, Division II, and Division III schools.  Many GMRC alumni have earned scholarships for rowing in recent years.  



GMRC runs year-round rowing programs, but the crew seasons are distinctly different from one another.  

SPRING/SUMMER- Spring season is the official racing season. The Great Miami Crew (GMC) usually attends 4-5 regattas in the Spring. These regattas consist of 2,000 meter “Sprint” races, culminating with the Youth National Championships in mid-June.  
Summer season is laid back, and fun with a lighter schedule, but we continue to train hard in preparation for fall regattas.

FALL/WINTER- During the Fall, GMC usually competes in four “head” races.  Head races are generally 2.5 to 4 miles long and are run against the clock.  As many as 80-90 boats may row in a single race.  They start one after another (usually ~ 15 seconds apart) and speed down an often winding river.  Their finishes are clocked and the boat with the fastest time wins.  For competitors, the most exciting moments often come as one crew overtakes another on turn, through a narrow stretch of river, and/or when three boats run neck-and-neck toward a bridge with room for only two!  Depending on the weather, we usually continue to practice on the water until mid-November.    
In rowing, the Winter is all about training!  We practice indoors 6 days a week with a focus on erging and weight training to prepare for Spring!



Novice and Varsity practice 6 days per week.  Attendance is strongly encouraged at all practices. Rowing is a team sport. For optimal team performance, a crew needs to practice together to prepare for competition.  If an athlete is included in a line-up and misses practice without notifying the coach, the athlete’s crew may not be able to go on the water that day.  Please attempt to notify the coach via email, text message, or phone call at least 24 hours before practice so line-ups can be adjusted.  Practice times are:

        MONDAY-THURSDAY  5-7:30
        SATURDAY  8-10:30
        (Practice times are slightly shorter in Winter for indoor training)



GMRC offers opportunities for both sweep rowing (one larger oar, both hands on the handle) and sculling (two smaller oars, one hand on each handle).  Our boat fleet includes singles, doubles, quads/4’s and eights. 

GMRC is also proud to introduce opportunities to participate in coastal rowing camps.  Coastal rowing is growing in popularity in the US and involves the use of special open hull boats that can take on the challenge of rougher water.  GMRC Head Coach, Marc Oria, is a member of the USRowing working group that is focused on bringing open water opportunities to clubs in the US.  Four GMRC athletes attended the 2021 World Rowing Beach Sprints National Team Trials in Sarasota, FL.  Two of these athletes made the National Team and went on to compete in the World Rowing Beach Sprints Finals and Coastal Championships regattas in Oeiras, Portugal!  As coastal rowing continues to grow in popularity in the US, it is likely that events will be added to the Olympic program in 2024! GMRC wants to be ready!



All participants must register through our online marketplace, submitting initial required documents including the medical forms and the parental release form. Program participation fees become due after completion of the athlete's two weeks try out period for Novice and by the first day of each season for Varsity. Payment plans available at registration.



Regatta travel expenses are in addition to standard program fees.  If traveling overnight, we try to reserve a block of rooms at a nearby hotel to keep the team together.  Regatta registration fees for typical regattas are included in program fees.  This does not include Youth Nationals or any other regatta that is not a team wide event.   



All GMRC Competitive Youth athletes must purchase the following:

  • Novice- navy blue compression shorts, GMRC tank 
  • Varsity-Race unisuit, 
  • 1 Hat or visor
  • 1 Base layer long sleeve shirt -- Navy blue 
  • 1 Base layer tights--Navy blue

Practicing in a unisuit or a tank top with spandex shorts is strongly encouraged.  Good running shoes are an important investment for healthy athletes and should be brought to practice each day. It is important to make sure that proper clothing is always available as conditions vary.

Appropriate clothing each day should include:

  • Wicking, close-fitting athletic gear
  • Visor or hat 
  • Waterproof shoes that are easy to remove/put on (Crocs or slides are great)
  • Sunglasses
  • Rain gear
  • Warm/dry clothes to change into after practice
  • athletes should also bring or wear sunblock and bug spray
  • water bottle



Rowing is an expensive sport, but we do not want financial considerations to keep athletes from participating. For these situations, we do have scholarships available thru a grant with the Hamilton Community Foundation. To apply please fill out and mail/turn in the form linked below. All information provided will remain confidential.


Contact Us: Great Miami Rowing Center

PO Box 1035 Hamilton OH 45012

Phone: (513) 857-2494