About Our Junior Squads

Lea Rowing Club has both recreational and competitive junior rowing squads. Juniors who would like to row recreationally, can join our Junior Club Squad. For juniors who want to row competitively, Lea R.C. has Girls’/Boys’ Performance Squads. There are opportunities for juniors to move between these squads

All new members will enter through Junior Club Squad, unless they are an experienced rower in which case they may join the Junior Performance or Junior High Performance Squads. Each part of the junior structure has been created for the best development of each child. Progression may be different due to commitment and technique consolidation and whether the junior wants to move into a more competitive squad. Children can move in both directions. Each part of the structure has been made to ensure that the junior will receive the best possible attention and the feeling of being at the right place.

Becoming a Rower:
A Lea R.C. Junior Rower’s Story

Becoming a Rower – A Lea R.C. junior rower's story

You can read more stories and news from Lea R.C. Junior Squads on our News & Results page

Junior Club Squad


The Junior Club Squad (JCS) at Lea R.C. is for those aged 12 (Year 8) to 18 years old, who would like to row recreationally once a week. Members can also participate in the weekly Junior Club Squad gym session.


“It’s a great place to meet friendly people and exercise to feel good about yourself” JCS member

“It’s great because everyone here is very supportive of you, and also the coaches support us in how we row” JCS member

Junior Club Squad FAQs

Is this squad for girls and boys?

Yes, this is a mixed squad.

How much does it cost?

For fees applicable to the current season can be downloaded from Membership & Fees on our Resources & Downloads page.

For information about bursaries please send us a message or email Junior Rowing via our Contact page.

Do you run taster sessions?

We do not run taster sessions.

Can my child start straight away or do they have to do a ‘learn to row’ course first?

Your child does not need to have done a learn to row course before joining JCS. If there is space at the water sessions we will agree a start date with you.

If there is a waiting list for the water sessions your child will be invited to join JCS Gym and will be put on the waiting list for water sessions. If your child is not able to attend the gym sessions s/he can still be put on the waiting list for the water sessions.

My child has additional needs. Can s/he row?

Please contact Junior Rowing via our Contact page to discuss.

How long are the sessions and when are they?

JCS water sessions are on Sundays and are one and a half hours. JCS Gym is currently run on Fridays evenings and also is one and half hours. For more information on times the sessions are run please contact Junior Rowing via our contact page.

Does my child have to be at a certain level of fitness to join?

No, if your child would like to try rowing, JCS is for juniors at all levels of fitness.

Does my child need to be able to swim?

Yes, your child must be able to swim at least 100 meters in light clothing to be able to row with JCS.

Do I need to buy any equipment?

No, we supply boats, buoyancy aids and any other relevant equipment.

What should my child wear/bring to the session?

  • Your child should wear kit that is not too loose (it can get caught in the boat/equipment), leggings or shorts, t-shirt, high viz top, hat if hot/very cold, sun lotion if hot, layers if cold, trainers, towel, change of kit, bottle for water.
  • If it is very hot, t-shirts rather than vest-style tops are recommended to avoid sunburn.

Do you sell kit?

We sell high viz JCS t-shirts.

What will the coaches teach my child?

  • Understanding the health and safety requirements for rowing on the water and safety around the boathouse.
  • Gaining basic skills and knowledge of rowing terminology.
  • Experiencing sculling (two oars) and possibly sweep (one oar) rowing.
  • Care and handling of equipment including launching and landing boats.
  • How to cox a crew boat and how to steer.
  • Using the rowing machine and how to set the monitor.
  • Experiencing rowing both in a crew boat and on their own.
  • Competence in different types of boats.
  • The importance of warming up and cooling down.

Are the coaches qualified?

Our Head Coaches and Lead Coaches have at least a Level 2 United Kingdom Certificate in Coaching (UKCC), as well as safeguarding and first aid training. All adult coaches have a DBS check.

More information about our coaches can be found on our Coaches page

Do you organise capsize tests?

Yes, we will organise these once or twice a year depending on the number of participants who need to complete one. Junior members who have not completed the test need to wear buoyancy aids at all times. These are supplied by the Club.

My child would like to commit to more rowing sessions, can s/he attend on other days as well?

Your child would need to move to the Girls’/Boys’ Performance Squads which are our junior competition squads and this would depend on your child’s age, ability and commitment. This would be done in consultation with the coaches.

What happens if the weather is bad?

If the weather is not good enough to row outside, the coaches will do an indoor session with the group. A session may be cancelled due to snow for example. In this case we will contact you to let you know.

Does JCS run over the holidays?

Yes, we run most of the year with two weeks off at Christmas.

How can I book a place for my child, find our more, or visit the club?

Parents or guardians should contact Junior Rowing via our Contact page for more information or to arrange a visit.

Junior Performance Squads


Lea Rowing Club’s Girls’/Boys’ Performance Squads are our junior competitive squads. They are a great place for children to learn and enjoy rowing and, if they demonstrate sufficient commitment to the sport, to develop into competitive athletes.


Junior Performance Squad FAQs

Is this a squad for girls and boys?

The High Performance Squad is mixed. The girls and boys in the Performance Squads train separately. There is a mixed group for those who want to row recreationally (see Junior Club Squad).

What age can you start to row at Lea R.C.?

Juniors can start rowing with Lea R.C. at 12 years old (Year 8). Most girls and boys begin at 12–14 years old, although some juniors join us when they are older.

What are your achievements?

The Junior Squad has been one of the club’s biggest success stories over the years. We were proud to win sports club of the year at the 12th Annual Hackney Youth Sports Awards, announced in February 2018. Our achievements on the national and international stage are too numerous to mention here. Some highlights are below and more detailed information is on our Hall of Fame web page.

Our international achievements
In 2018, four Lea Junior girls (Rosa Millard, Ella Sharman, Molly Foxell and Laura Ellington) represented Great Britain, winning the annual J16 GB vs France competition in an eight. Two of our junior boys (Jasper den Dulk and Louis Powell) represented England in the double sculls at the Home International Regatta.

Lea R.C. Junior Champions
In 2018, Lea Juniors were crowned British Champions in both WJ18 2- (Elsa Froggatt-Brown, Rachel McDonald) and WJ16 4+ (Rosa Millard, Laura Ellington, Ella Sharman, Molly Foxell, Lyla Downey) categories.

Lea Blues
Former Lea R.C. Junior Maddy Badcott rowed for Oxford twice in the Oxford-Cambridge Boat race, being elected President in her final year. Maddy Badcott also rowed for Great Britain at the Coupe de la Jeunesse.

What is the level of commitment to become a competitive athlete?

  • Rowing is a highly competitive, medium endurance sport and takes place outdoors all year round.
  • Members are expected to commit to regular training in the gym after school in order to develop the correct movement patterns, technique, strength and fitness.
  • Junior training takes place in school term time, though some older groups of athletes continue to train during the school holidays.
  • Racing in junior rowing takes place in year groups and attendance requirements rise as young athletes get older, rising to eight to ten sessions per week for 16–18 year-olds.

Do you offer courses?

We do not offer any courses but but juniors may join our Junior Club Squad, our entry level, at any time throughout the year.

Are the coaches qualified?

The coaches will have at least Level 2 United Kingdom Certificate in Coaching (UKCC) and will have completed a First Aid training course and attended a Safeguarding and Protecting Children workshop. All coaches are DBS checked.

More information about our coaches can be found on our Coaches page.

Are there any other requirements to join?

To join Lea R.C. juniors need to be able to swin at least 100 metres in light clothing.

How much does it cost?

For fees applicable to the current season can be downloaded from Membership & Fees on our Resources & Downloads page

How do I find out more?

If you would like to find out more about rowing with Lea R.C. Juniors, want to come and have a look or would even like to attend a training session to see what it’s like, please ask a parent or guardian to contact Junior Rowing via our Contact page

To enquire about joining Lea R.C. as a junior lease go to the contact link on our Join Lea R.C. page:


Lea Rowing Club

The Boathouse,
Spring Hill,
Hackney, London E5 9BL


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