Lapsed Gold Members seek more rowing options

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A recent survey has revealed that the majority of British Rowing Gold Members who have dropped out of the sport did so because they no longer have enough time to row.

Seventy one of the 349 former Gold members believed that work commitments conflicted with rowing schedules, with a further 43 saying that training schedules are too inflexible to incorporate into their lifestyles.

Fifty-two per cent of the 349 former Gold members who took the survey were male, and 37% of all participants were aged between 25 and 34.

The next biggest age group was 16-24, which accounted for 30 per cent of rowers who have recently dropped out of the sport.

A significant 96 per cent of participants revealed that they had not considered taking out a Silver (non racing) membership with British Rowing, and 72 per cent had not heard about our Explore Rowing scheme – aimed at keeping people interested in more social, fun and challenge-focused activities on the water.

Additional comments ranged from ‘it would be good if the clubs near me (Putney) would advertise some taster days or come-and-try days’ and ‘I found it difficult to find a club locally that would accept my (very) novice status and not expect 7 days a week commitment’ to ‘I very much enjoyed my time in the UK and rowing definitely added very positively to this experience. Thanks!’ and ‘I still miss rowing very much and will probably be persuaded back someday, just not yet. The social aspect of being part of such a friendly and supportive squad helped me very much at a difficult time of my life and I will always have very happy memories of my rowing.’

The survey revealed that the majority of lapsed members felt that there were not enough alternatives to intensive, race-focused rowing, and that the strains of working full-time and training six times a week can be too much to tolerate.

We want to hear your thoughts about how you are keeping your existing members happy in the sport. Have you devised a training plan to suit rowers who are unable to commit to six days of training each week? Have you managed to introduce rowers to the different opportunities offered by Explore Rowing? If so, let us know by emailing