Adaptive Rowing

Adaptive Rowing is for people with disabilities who participate in the sport of rowing.


Adaptive Rowing is about removing barriers to participation in the sport for anyone who has a physical disability, sensory or learning impairment.

For those who would like to compete within Adaptive Rowing there are two main streams.

  1. Para-Rowers – rowers who have successfully been through the classification process and have been assigned a Sport Class. These rowers are eligible to compete at all levels including the corresponding Rowability grouping and LTA, TA or AS events up to and including the Paralympic Games.
  2. Rowability Rowers – rowers who have been through the classification process and have been confirmed as meeting a minimal disability, but are not eligible for Para-Rowing. These rowers will have been assigned a Rowability Grouping and are eligible to compete in all British Rowing competitions, up to but not including the British Rowing Championships.

Getting started

Why don’t you give rowing a try? You can find out more about getting started by contacting the Rowability team at

Please see our Classification page for an explanation of the Para-Rowing Sport Classes and Rowability Groupings.

For those who don’t want to race, there is more to rowing. Perhaps you want to experience the freedom of being out on the water or improve your health and well-being. There are many flexible ways to take part, on the water and on land too, with indoor rowing.

Rowing is truly becoming a leader in accessible sport.

British Rowing has a number of clubs across the country that offer Adaptive Rowing.  Advances in the equipment available for rowers with a disability and the increasing number of accessible rowing venues has meant that rowing is truly becoming a leader in inclusive sport.

Have you also been inspired like so many others by Great Britain’s success at international level?  The GB Rowing Team has been winning gold medals in Para-Rowing classes at World Championships since 2003. At the Paralympic Games in Beijing 2008, the sport of rowing was included for the first time. GB single scullers, Helene Raynsford and Tom Aggar both brought home gold medals for the team and our nation. On home waters in London 2012, GB’s mixed coxed four claimed a stunning gold medal win. In 2015 the GB Para-Rowing squad set world records both on and off the water at the British Rowing Indoor Championships and international regattas. Could this be you? Find out how you could get involved in the GB Para-Rowing squad here.

Great Britain is also the only nation to have qualified all four Sport Classes for the Paralympic Games in 2016 in Rio.

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Rowers with a disability who want to race either indoor or on the water will need to go through British Rowing’s classification system.  

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Getting Started

Rowers Coaches and Volunteers Clubs and Centres Event Organisers If you are interested in including Para-Rowing and Rowability events in your regatta programme, helpful advice can be found on the Organising Events page.

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So you want to learn to row? How exciting that you have decided to give it a go.

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A great way to have fun and keep fit.

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Para-Rowing Talent ID


Do you have what it takes to be the next Paralympic rower? See our Para-Rowing Talent ID page for more information.

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