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About Sculling at BIAC

BIAC offers sculling oportunities for rowers at all skill levels. As an individual sport it is especially important for scullers to be familiar with basic skills and to be competent on the water before heading out on their own.

There are two basic types of sculling shells (or boats): Open and Flat water. BIAC uses Aeros for its open water singles; these are pretty stable boats. A flat water shell is delicate and easy to tip over, requiring significant practice to master. BIAC has many types of flat water sculls including the Maas 27 and Maas Flyweight.

Sculling Lessons
Weekdays: Wednesdays, 6:00 p.m. and Thursdays, 6:00 a.m.
Contact: Mike Sullivan

Sculling Categories:

Beginners - Sculling for the first time - never rowed before. The beginner program consists of instruction in boat handling, safety, and basic on water boat moving. The Sculling Manual has a checklist of things a beginner must learn. A beginner must scull around 100 miles on their own between the boathouse and "the wires" before they progress to Novice status, less for someone who has competed previously in the sweep program.

Novice - Has passed through beginner program. A novice is such until they are no longer able to race in a Novice sculling race, which is 2 years from the date of their first race.

Intermediate - Has raced in Novice races and has experience racing and training next to other singles. Intermediates may be very competent in an Aero and not so good in a flat water single (that's fine).

Advanced - Experienced in racing singles and team sculling boats. Very competent in a flat water single.

Beginner Programs

We offer two Beginner sculling programs: the monthly instruction and the summer program. Depending on the level of a Beginner sculler, progression from one of the Beginner programs into the Center's Novice/intermediate/advanced sculling program is possible and encouraged.

Monthly Beginner Sculling Program (March to October)

BIAC offers Beginner sculling instruction programs to the general public as one of its Community Access Programs. Membership in the Center is not required to participate in this access program. The first Beginner lesson is free and, after that, beginners may sign up for one month of instruction for $100. The instruction fee can be applied towards membership.

For information on monthly Beginner sculling lessons, contact Mike Sullivan. Clothing suggestions include athletic attire that allows full range of movement but is not baggy, plus rubber-soled shoes. All instruction is conducted at BIAC.

Typical progression through the month-long Beginner program is:

  1. Beginner instruction: In an Aero, a more stable open water single with Mike.
  2. Until a Beginner is a member, they must coordinate their sessions with Mike's schedule (if a Beginner subsequently joins BIAC, they may be certified to take out club boats on their own).

Summer Beginner Sculling Instruction

From May through July, Mike Sullivan offers Beginner lessons during the week. The cost of the lesson is currently included as part of the membership. The lessons are available Wednesday 6:30pm-8:00pm and Thursday 6:00am-7:30am. To schedule a lesson during the summer session, an appointment with Mike is required. Novice Instruction takes place supervised by Mike at 6am on Wednesday mornings

Intermediate/Advanced Sculling Program

The intermediate/advanced program continues through the winter based on availability. The cost of participating in the advanced sculling program is currently included as part of the membership. Scullers meet on Monday, Wednesday and Friday mornings at 6.30 - 8am. Generally over a half dozen sculllers participate in a drop-in type arrangement. The scope of the workout depends upon the group that shows up that morning. To participate, you must be able to handle your boat safely, though there is no prerequisite for skill level. In addition Mike Sullivan will be taking out the Mosquito fleet on Tuesdays at 6 a.m. for any intermediate/advanced scullers hoping to gain valuable tips.

Generally, Beginner scullers are asked to scull 100 miles on their own in a Maas Aero or other open water boat after their initial beginning lessons before they are ready to join. Check with Mike as to what is expected before joining up with the intermediate/advanced "mosquito sculling fleet."

© Bair Island Aquatic Center 2007 -"info at GoBair dot org"