Level 3


(c) Katie Sturgess

This is a major level in a rower’s development, as if done correctly it will capture their interest in the sport. There should be a wide and varied mixture of training modalities, continual observation and evaluation of musculoskeletal developments. Make sure to take into consideration growth spurts when setting different types and volumes of training in order to develop an individual who is competent and understands how to train. Embed technical competencies on the water and on the land. Optimal aerobic training begins. Emphasis on talent development not identification.


Showing good competence at simple skills and developing more complex skills.

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In any boat type

Getting afloat

  • Independently get afloat.
  • Including pushing off and coming in without assistance.

Grip and posture

  • Maintain good posture across the course of an outing.
  • Maintain alignment of the pelvis and lumbar spine through the catch, drive and recovery.

Confidence and balance skills

  • Keep building on previous work improving speed and quality.
  • Can do ten roll ups whilst keeping the blades clear of the water on the recovery.


  • Turn the boat 360 in 35-40 sec.
  • Confidently get on to a stake boat and hold the boat straight in a cross wind.
  • Move off stake boat on a straight course.

Stopping skills

  • Complete an emergency stop at speed without losing control or falling in!

Whole stroke

  • Retain posture and technique at low and high ratings.

Catch and connection

  • Suspend weight in a moving boat throughout the drive phase.
  • Square clean extraction at all speeds and rate.
  • Can do sequences of alternate squaring / feathering.
  • Recovery sequence follows hands, body, slide model with good posture.
  • Hands are held so that blades are clear of the water.
  • Squaring is completed by three quarter slide in preparation for the catch.
  • Demonstrate good rhythm and ratio at all rates and pressures.
  • Minimum strokes square blade.


At Level 3 rowers should be able to achieve all exercises from the advanced series of posters, as well as basic exercises, with correct technique.

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Core Engagement

  • Can successfully complete Testing Core 3. (See Core Workshop).


  • Can successfully complete all exercises from Advanced Flexibility.


  • Can complete all exercises from Advanced Strengthening
  • Can complete five press-ups and five pull ups whilst maintaining correct technique.


  • Can complete all exercises from Advanced Stability


The rower’s fitness at Level 3 should allow the rower to consistently perform for a 30 minute period at an elevated heart rate.

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On water

General Fitness

  • Can complete 30 minutes of continuous UT1 cross training comfortably with an elevated heart rate. (e.g. swimming, running, cycling etc.).


Improved knowledge to allow the rower to be independent and think constructively about their activity.

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Rowing terms


Rigging measurements:

  • Understand the effects of changes to and how to adjust:
    • Span / Spread.
    • Height.
    • Outboard.
    • Inboard.
  • Can adjust height.



Understand and develop their responsibilities both for themselves and the sport.

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  • Read and understand the Nutrition Guide for High Performance Rowers
  • Keep a nutrition diary

Clean Sport


  • Keep a training diary to monitor and record progress and recovery.


Events at Level 3 should still be focused on personal performance and achievement. Rowers however may start wanting to gain experience in national competition such as the Tideway Heads and other larger regatta’s and head races.

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This could include:

  • Intermediate categories at BUCS Events.
  • J15/J16 events at BRJC or National Schools.
  • British Rowing Sculling Festival (Senior Categories).
  • British Rowing Beach Sprints.
  • National Masters events.
  • Individuals may also consider attending J16 Trials and GB vs France Trials.


Workshops and Learning Opportunities

  • J16 Camp

<<< Training Guidance

 <<< Level 1

<<< Level 2

Level 4 >>>

FAQs >>>


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