Keeping your club going remotely – practical advice

With rowing clubs closed for the foreseeable future, you can always rely on the innovative side of our club volunteers to come up with a way to keep their clubs connected and support the local community.


There are some fantastic ideas that clubs have devised and we wanted to provide a location to share these.

There may well be ideas you want to adapt, join in with or shamelessly steal 😀

Remember you should make sure you and your club stay safe when using online tools.

If you have any ideas you’d like us to share, please let us know via our club support form.

Fulham Reach Boat Club - Sign up for the Strava Club challenge!

Missing competing and the club spirit? Well Fulham Reach BC has set up a Strava Club challenge and is inviting rowing clubs to join them in a cross-club competition to see which club tops the training charts every week!

All your club needs to do is set up a club group on Strava which club members then sign up to. Strava tracks all your running and cycling – it will track every hour that your club members do, providing a cumulative number of hours that your club has worked out. Most hours for bike/run wins – Fulham Reach will update the club standings every Monday.

  • Set your clubs up!
  • Join Strava at
  • Take part by creating your rowing club
  • Let @FulhamReachBC know that your club has joined – hashtag #stravaboatclub to make sure that your club is in the standings!

Good luck!

Maidenhead Rowing Club - Members and Parents support network

Maidenhead Rowing Club has set up a Members and Parents support network.

For all active members and junior parents plus past-members still resident in the area, and also residents near the rowing club.

To support

  1. Those over 70-years-old and/or with certain medical conditions
  2. Those unwell or ‘self-isolating’, having been in contact with people showing symptoms
  3. People who live by themselves
Ways of supporting those over 70 years old or vulnerable
  • Assign each with a “buddy” from our pool of volunteers to proactively make regular calls throughout the extended period of ‘self-isolation’ to check things are in hand.
  • Check if there are any tasks that need doing (e.g. walking the dog, collecting medicine from the pharmacy etc), or provisions that need fetching.
  • Or just have a chat for 15 minutes to pass the time of day.
Ways of supporting everyone
Group email address
  • Monitored by designated club members
  • To enable people to request assistance when needed – eg. for a couple of weeks to collect shopping etc. from a pool of volunteers.
  • If anyone is just feeling lonely, anxious or just feels like a chat, they can just drop a line to the group email and someone will reach out.
Squad captains
  • Asked to also keep an eye out for people who drop out of regular contact and give them a call to see if everything is ok.
Volunteers appeal

There are two types of help needed:

  1. Making phone calls to other members or ”buddies”
  2. Doing jobs within the area such as collecting shopping/medicine, walking dogs, dropping off a loo roll.
Additional resources
  • The Silver Line – 0800 4708090 – A free confidential helpline for older people, open 24 hours a day, every day of the year.
  • Kooth – Free, safe and anonymous online support for young people.
  • Young Minds – Support for children struggling with how they are feeling and for their parents.
  • ACT Companion: The Happiness Trap app
  • Based on the best-selling book, The Happiness Trap, by Dr Russ Harris. You can also watch Dr Harris’s video about facing COVID-19 here
  • The Headspace app – Offers guided meditation practices. Meditation has been shown to help people stress less, focus more and sleep better.

Tees Rowing Club - Juniors Coaching Team strategy

Parents of juniors requested simple communications lines as they are understandably becoming overwhelmed by the amount of information coming at them from multiple school teachers, so the Tees Junior Coaching Team agreed to send a single newsletter style communication once a week – see sample newsletter below.

The Junior Coaching Team also agreed:

1 - A structured programme taking place focused on specific targets.

2 - Juniors setting up a WhatsApp Group.

3 - Where possible the coaches aim to adapt exercises to individual needs by asking parents to conduct the Thomas Test at home. They would also carry out some baseline tests, e.g. how long you can hold a plank, no of sit-ups and press-ups, hamstring flexibility etc... People to send a 30 to 60 second video through of indoor rowing and the Thomas Test.

4 – Children are all of different ages and development, and have access to very different space and equipment, so avoid setting a single set of exercises or expectations where it will disadvantage anyone.

5 – Encourage juniors to sign up for the Fulham Reach BC Strava Challenge.

6 - Zoom sessions for parents, coaches and juniors on topics such as ‘How to remain positive in the following crisis’, ‘Strategies for managing personal stresses and anxieties’ and ‘How we support each other through this period’.


This week’s focus

Is all about setting the scene, the next two weeks will all be about establishing baselines and new routines for us all.  IMPORTANT TO KEEP STRETCHING STRETCHING STRETCHING. To that end this week’s activities observing the Government’s new instructions that you can go outside your house for one exercise session a day, are:

Tuesday 24 March

Exercise - 30 mins jog, walk or bike ride and this circuit from British Rowing

If you cannot do a plank lifting each hand in turn then just hold the plank for 30 seconds and do this three times. Do not drop your hips. Water bottles can be used instead, as you get better, you can fill them with sand if you have any in the garden.

18.00 to 19.00 - a Zoom call for all the juniors so we can agree how we are all going to work. Parents you are welcome to join us, or you are may just want to have a. rest from home schooling for a while.

19.15 to 20.45 - a Zoom call for all the Coaching Team.

Wednesday 25 March

Exercise - for those of you with rowing machines then please do this workout - the technique we are looking for from you can be seen here

For those who do not have a rowing machine, yes, it is a 30 mins walk, jog or bike ride .

Thursday 26 March

18.00 to 19.00 - Manoj Krishna who is behind the Human Enquiry Project - - is going to join us in the Zoom Room to help us to think about how we are all going to keep positive during the next few weeks.

Friday 27 March

Go out for a jog, walk or a cycle ride.

Saturday 28 March

09.30 to 11.00 – Do the Thomas Test, stretching exercises and a core circuit - plus a run, walk or bike ride.

Sunday 29 March

09.30 to 11.00 - there will be something not sure what yet - plus a run, walk or bike ride.


Remember to always warm up.

Cleaning protocols for Concept2 ergos.

Record your activity to take on other clubs - record your training on the Tees Rowing Club group on Strava as part of the Fulham Reach BC Strava Challenge. Get involved and prove to the rest of the country that we are still training hard as a club!

Star Club - launch hardship fund

Star Club has launched a hardship fund (contributions are Gift Aid eligible) for members to contribute towards subscriptions of (primarily junior) rowers who would otherwise be unable to participate in rowing because of financial constraints.

The hardship fund will be a long-term addition to club life and community support. The club is keen to encourage juniors from less privileged backgrounds to try rowing and Covid-19 has accelerated the launch of this initiative for Star Club.

Shanklin Sandown Rowing Club - community volunteering

Juniors from the club are volunteering to help vulnerable people in the local community with shopping etc.

Champion of the Thames Rowing Club - weekly club training and socials

To keep the club spirit going, Champion of the Thames has a series of weekly training activities through Zoom which has been sent round to all club members via email and the club’s Facebook page. There is also a Saturday evening social too – one evening there was a club quiz!

The club hopes this will help provide ongoing connectivity and reduce isolation over the coming weeks.

Runcorn Rowing Club - crew league

Runcorn has set up an indoor rowing league between crews with 27 members in the league and five crews. They average out 2k times to give roughly equal chances.

The club league is for anyone and everyone and includes competitors of all ages, from 14 to 72 years, and all abilities from novices to ancient masters.

Thames Tradesmen’s Rowing Club - fun Twitter challenges

Without a boathouse because of an ongoing lease dispute – now resolved – Thames Tradesmen’s have been promoting the club much more on social media over the last few months.

Since the COVID-19 lockdown started last month, they have been keeping their 750 Twitter followers entertained with weekly quizzes.

Challenges include a scavenger hunt, GPS art competition, wearing rainbow kit – inspired by the NHS rainbow – and recreating a famous sporting event. Prizes are provided by Crewroom.
The challenges are part of a wider club strategy called ‘Rowvelution’, aiming to reposition the club within the community by being open to all and diverse.

Read more

Curlew Rowing Club - online clubhouse

At the start of the lockdown, Curlew Rowing Club set up an online clubhouse via Slack to keep its 150 members informed and engaged – and to ensure their wellbeing during this period of social distancing.

About 70 people use Slack. In addition, coach Alex Brown posts home workouts every day to keep people motivated.
The Curlew committee chose Slack because the design looked better and had useful options for their virtual clubhouse, including direct and private messaging, sharing links and video calling. They wanted to be able to really interact with the membership rather than sending out mass emails which had the danger of becoming a one-way conversation.

Curlew is determined to support members as much as possible with reduced membership fees during the lockdown. If anyone loses their job then they don’t lose their membership – they still have access to Slack.
The committee wants to make sure that everyone can come back to the real clubhouse when things open again.

Read more