About the Team

Email csurowing@gmail.com or Sign up Online if you are interested in joining.

Additional Info:

We are a club sport at CSU that competes at the varsity level. No experience necessary to join. The desire to compete and be a part of a team is.

When to join

  • Fall semester: We accept new rowers the first 2-3 weeks of fall semester
  • Spring semester; we train throughout the entire spring semester (first 8 weeks indoors; second 8 weeks on water).
    • We accept new rowers throughout the spring semester, until the end of the 1st week after spring break.
    • We like to travel south for spring break to train on the water in warmer climates. New rowers are welcome to join a spring training trip.
  • Summer: Summer rowing is available (unaffiliated with CSU). Message us for details.

**If you’re too late to join, you can still email us at any time, and we will put you on the email list for the following season (we may even make an exception to let you in mid-season)**


  • We meet at the Cleveland Rowing Foundation Boathouse, which is located at 1003 British Street, Cleveland, in the flats. We’ll meet in the lobby. When you come, just ask someone for Cleveland State, and they should point you in the right direction.
  • Commuter? Our varsity rowers pick up rowers at Fenn Tower on campus. Ask and we can set something up!
  • Regular team practices are Monday through Friday, 5:30-7:15AM. First regular season practice is the first day of classes in fall, and the first day after spring break in the spring. We do have off-water conditioning before each season.

Row or Cox?:

Each boat has 4 or 8 rowers, and one coxswain. You will be welcome to try either position (rowing or coxing).

  • Rowers will row; they learn the stroke,
  • Coxswains do not row. They are the “captains” of the boat. They control where the boat goes and what the rowers do. They keep everything in the boat coordinated and organized. Their commands are heard and must be obeyed throughout the boat. During races, they can help keep the boat motivated and enthused. Coxswains tend to be lightweight and small in stature (like jockeys in horse racing)
    • NOTE: There is also a “lightweight” category for rowers who weigh less than 160 lbs (men) or 135 lbs (women), in case you’re smaller, and would prefer to row.
  • In races, rowers and coxswains are recognized and awarded equally in victory.

Your first year:

  • You are considered a “novice” your first year (this is not a slight, but the technical term).
  • First year rowers compete in the “novice” category against others in their first year. This levels the playing field with those less experienced. When you place in a race, you get a medal. Novice medals look exactly the same as all the other medals!
  • There is a lot of technique in this sport, and your first season may feel slow or frustrating as we bring you up to speed. But ask any varisty (experienced) rower…it’s worth the time put into learning the proper technique!


  • We typically have four regattas each season; three are out-of-town. We typically go Friday night, sleep somewhere (usually a free place like a gym floor or someone’s house), race Saturday, and get home by 6PM. Typical competition includes all colleges throughout the Midwest. We occasionally compete at the national level as well. We try to keep the calendar at csurowing.com up to date.
  • Fall races are 5Ks (15-20 minutes) and fall season is the first ~8 weeks of semester
  • Spring races are 2Ks (6-8 minutes), and the season is the second ~8 weeks of season.
    • Over spring training, we usually go out of state (the past few years we have went to Tampa Florida for the week). The cost for this trip was very low (just enough to cover gas and food money—our lodging and boat rentals were nearly free). This is optional, but a very good time if you’re able to make it.


  • Dues are usually close to $200 per season. You will have two weeks to decide if you like rowing before you will be required to pay.
  • Additional costs include gas/food money for traveling, and any team gear you may want to purchase (uniform, shirt, jacket, etc)

The Team:

The team has been around since 2000. We’re a student-run club sport, and operate the team like a varsity sport. We have some great people in the club, and will be very welcoming and available to help as you get started. Most people on the team learn the sport while on the team. Most rowers learn the sport in college.

See also: Frequently Asked Questions for more information about being a rower.

We’re looking forward to seeing you at the boathouse! Feel free to reach us if you have any more thoughts or questions.

Email csurowing@gmail.com or Sign up Online if you are interested in joining.