By Sophie Braham
The West Australian Rowing Club started another round of their ‘Learn to Row’ classes this week, with eager applicants up bright and early and ready to get started.
Club President, Peta Rule, says WARC has been running rowing classes from their Swan River Boathouse for more than a decade and get a very diverse group of students each time.
“We’ve run rowing classes here for over 10 years (and) we are the only rowing club that specialises in adult ‘learn to row’ classes,” says Peta.
“People in the central business district tend to be a bit more mobile, so we get people from all over Perth who are working in the city.”
The classes consist of five lessons over two weeks to learn basic skills, with a developmental program offered afterwards for students to continue their rowing careers.
After marrying a rower, first time WARC student Daniela Budge said the class was very informative.
“I think getting out on the water will be good, just to see what it feels like, it’ll be so different,” says Daniela.
Under the guidance of coach Jimmy O’Regan and Program Coordinator Kay Robinson, students will learn the skills to get them rowing on the Swan River, as well as boat handling, calls and how to keep themselves and the equipment safe.
“Our aim is to give people a much more diverse experience with the sport, not just on the water, but also their boat skills,” says Peta.
WARC recently bought two specially-made boats from Sykes in Victoria worth $25,000 specifically for the ‘Learn to Row’ course as they are easier to learn in.
“(We’re the) only course in WA with brand new equipment,” says Peta.
“It’ll be interesting to see the progression (in students) because it’ll be a lot easier to pick up the stroke when you’re not worried about falling in.”