Rowing Catching On With Kids

By: Matt Barnes Email
By: Matt Barnes Email

News 12 at 6 o'clock, Friday, July 11, 2008

It may be summer time for kids but instead of sitting on the couch playing video games, some are enjoying the great outdoors and learning how to row.

"The whole theme of this camp is to have fun," said Michael Townsend, director of the summer camp. "They first go through a swim test and then we show them a safety video. We then let them row an a rowing machine called an erg, and then we get them on the water."

And that's when the real fun begins, especially for those learning the sport for the first time.

"It's such an incredible team sport because you can't do anything by yourself. You have to do everything with everybody," said first-time rower Sam Reid. "If you try to do it by yourself, it doesn't work."

Sam is just one of many first time rowers who hit the water this week. A sign of a growing trend seen at the boathouse.

"The first time I did this camp, there were about seven people. Then last year, there were 20 and now there are a ton," said camp volunteer Blair Robillard

"Every day at school, all the kids do is talk about rowing and what they did at rowing practice and that's attractive and makes people want to come and see why and what makes it so addictive," said Townsend.

And by the looks of things this week, looks like the future of the sport here in the CSRA is evry bright.

"I didn't really want to come first. I was actually forced to come but about halfway through, I was having a lot of fun," said Reid. "The whole purpose of me coming out here was to give me something to do, and it's just been awesome."

"I think it's a lot of fun,", said Robillard. "It beats sitting on your couch all day!"


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