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JRow Middle School Program
GMRC middle school athletes launching for JRow practice
Middle School Girls Rowing Team celebrating at regional competition


WHO:  youth ages 11-14 (grades 5-8)

Great Miami Rowing Center’s JRow is a program for middle school students that would like the opportunity to learn basic rowing technique, have fun, strengthen their bodies, and prepare to participate on  the competitive youth team at the High School level.

* Students aged 14 are eligible to join the youth competitive team as a novice or may remain with JRow thru 8th grade.

Fall Season
August 28, 2023- November 11, 2023
Monday and Thursday 5-7PM
Saturday 9-11AM

Winter Season
November 27- March 2, 2024

November 27- December 22
Thursday 5-7pm & Saturday 9-11am

Holiday Break 12/25-1/2

January 2, 2024- March 2
Monday, Thursday 5-7pm & Saturday 9-11am

Middle School Summer Camps

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!

winter Season Fees

*Does not include registration fees for indoor erg sprints


Middle School Rowing Overview

Rowing’s enormous potential to have a positive impact on young athletes has made it one of the fastest-growing youth sports in the country.  Our middle school students learn life skills through teamwork, competition, skill development and fitness building.  

Eligibility:  All 5th thru 8th graders from all area public and private middle schools are eligible for this program. 
Program:  Coached rowing with an emphasis on technique and the fundamentals of rowing.  This is a recreational program-JRowers do not typically participate in regattas.  

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


why rowing?

  • Most people are not introduced to rowing at a very early age.  This gives those who start rowing in middle school a completely level playing field to learn, excel, and try out something new without having to compete against others with far more 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.
  • 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.  


goals of the JRow program

To give an introduction to the sport of rowing and exposure to the three disciplines of the sport:

  1. Sweep rowing (one larger oar, both hands on the handle)
  2. Sculling (two smaller oars, one hand on each handle)
  3. Erging (use of an indoor rower or rowing machine)
  • To have FUN on and off the water by using a developmentally appropriate approach to learn basic technical skills, proper boat handling and to improve overall fitness and motor skills (including core work, stretching and cross-training exercises).
  • To provide a safe environment which fosters a strong understanding of the work ethic and camaraderie that lies at the heart of rowing.
  • The program is designed to prepare young athletes to successfully train and race on the GMRC Youth Competitive Team.  8th graders will have the choice to either join the Novice Competitive Team or remain with JRow until 9th grade. (The level of commitment is greater and some kids are not ready for this yet! ) Our coaches will make recommendations and help with this decision.


JRow Seasons

SPRING-  March-May
SUMMER-  June-August
FALL-  September-November
WINTER-  December-February (Indoor Training)

FEES- $400 per season 


JRow Practices

JRow practices are 3 times per week (may be different for winter season)

(Times may change during water seasons, and are typically longer to allow time for getting equipment ready)

During our water seasons, we try to spend as much time on the water as possible, but it is important to note that land workouts are sometimes just as vital. There are days that will be spent on land or indoors due to the weather if it is too windy or wet.  On these days we will schedule other activities such as; go for a run, do team bonding activities, have an indoor rowing relay race, do some core-strengthening and some flexibility work, watch videos of rowing races, or a myriad other activities developed by our creative coaches to teach the critical skills needed to be proficient on the water. Time spent on land activities is just as important as time on the water in developing friendships, teamwork and an appreciation and understanding of the sport.



The following items are recommended for all GMRC JRow athletes:

  •  navy blue compression shorts
  •  GMRC tank (available thru the uniform liaison)
  • 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


Boats for JRow

Predominant focus is on sculling in our ‘octopal’ and ‘kingles’ – some advanced Jrowers may have opportunities in singles, doubles or quads. 



Middle School racing is informal and fun. We try to organize at least one scrimmage with another local team per season. We'll scrimmage against each other, race short distances, create obstacle courses and relays. We'll race forward, backward (not really!), around buoys, and sometimes flip, get back in the boat and continue. Our goal is for you to come off the water with a smile! Meanwhile, you will have developed boat-handling and mental skills that will be of enormous value when you join our Youth Competitive Racing Team.



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 new athletes and by the first day of each season for continuing athletes.  

The Registration "Great Miami Rowing Center Middle School Program" is not currently available.


Contact Us: Great Miami Rowing Center

PO Box 1035 Hamilton OH 45012

Phone: (513) 857-2494