What is Coastal Rowing?

Coastal rowing is the “adventure side of rowing”. Utilized for ocean-rowing or inland rowing on rough-water lakes and rivers, coastal rowing adds a new dimension to traditional flatwater rowing. The standard boats are singles, doubles and coxed quadruple sculls and the races are traditionally 4-8 kilometers in length. The boats themselves are quite different than flatwater boats with added stability and toughness that also makes them ideal as “learn-to-row” boats. In addition to their own equipment and technique, coastal rowers must also be aware of tides, currents and be able to maneuver through rough water and near other marine traffic.

This is our sport. Coastal rowing.

Thrills, spills, waves, crashes. Coastal rowing. This is our sport

Posted by World Rowing Coastal on Monday, June 4, 2018


We asked Janice Mason, a Rowing BC Board Member and Olympian who completed the 750-mile Race to Alaska in 2016 why she suggests coastal rowing to others.

“Coastal rowing is a fantastic way to enjoy rowing in our vast, open, beautiful environment. One can experience such a variety of conditions that you would never get out into in a racing shell. The boats are much more stable thus more relaxing for new rowers (less tippy) and even fun for us old experienced rowers whose joints aren’t quite as mobile as when young.”


Whether you are looking for an opportunity to race among the world’s best coastal rowers, or are a weekend warrior looking for another opportunity for adventure on the water, now is the perfect time to get involved in coastal rowing. 

Get Involved.

In the lead up to the 2018 World Rowing Coastal Championships, a variety of opportunities will be available to try coastal rowing for the first time, or fit in some training in the coastal shells before signing up to race.

Find out more about coastal rowing opportunities near your community.

Boat purchasing opportunities can be found on the World Rowing Coastal Championships website.

2018 World Rowing Coastal Championships

The World Rowing Federation (FISA) has awarded the 2018 World Rowing Coastal Championships to Sidney, BC. The regatta will take place October 11-13, 2018.

A new rowing society – OARCA Coastal Rowing – has been formed in BC for the purpose of hosting this event. The Organizing Committee is heavily supported by individuals from Vancouver Island, but also draws interest and expertise from across the country. Organizing Committee members include past Olympians and other long-time rowing enthusiasts from BC, AB, MB, QB, and PEI.

With the sport especially popular in Europe, this is the first time the World Rowing Coastal Championships has ever been hosted in North America! This presents an amazing opportunity to grow the sport in BC, Canada and the United States.

Find out more about the 2018 World Rowing Coastal Championships here.

Racing at the World Rowing Coastal Championships

All BC rowers are encouraged to consider racing at the World Rowing Coastal Championships. As the Host Nation, Canada does not have a restriction on the number of entries we can put in. Boats will be made available by Euro Diffusion for all athletes racing. There is no entry fee to race, but boat rental fees will apply.  Find out more about signing up to race here