Row for Us!

All athletes welcome, no experience necessary! Learn more about Irvine’s first Intercollegiate Sport and our tradition of excellence.

Crew welcomes inquires from all students interested in rowing for UC Irvine. We look for tall, athletic individuals who are committed to working hard and wish to compete in the oldest intercollegiate sport and one of UCI’s founding sports.

A premium is placed on “tall” athletes, 6’2″ and above,  as height is an advantage in rowing (stroke length/leverage). There are also opportunities for those who weigh less to compete as coxswains who steer the shells and coordinate race strategy. Lower weight limits for coxswains are 125 lbs for men’s boats and because of this, it is quite common for women to cox men’s boats in collegiate competition.

Interest is welcome from both experienced and novice rowers.  Those rowers new to UCI with rowing experience from high school, clubs or other universities may sometimes begin workouts with UCI’s varsity. Each season UCI welcomes new students who may have previously rowed at Newport Aquatic Center, Marin Rowing Assn., Serra HS, Long Beach Junior Crew or Capital Crew.

However, like other top schools across the country, the majority of UCI’s candidate student-rowers did not compete in rowing prior to starting university.  No previous experience is required.  And you can be either a new, continuing or transfer student. We have even seen some graduate students down at the boathouse from time to time.

The majority of UCI’s boats enter Heavyweight competitions.  Some UCI boats qualify as Lightweight events with restrictions on rowers as follows:

  • Boat average of 155 lbs
  • No individual rower over 160 lbs

Check out the Team Facebook Page for videos and photos of current and recent crews to get an indication of the operation of the Men’s program.  Candidates can also review the photos, videos and other components of this website for recent and earlier years of the program.

Practices begin in the Fall and continue throughout the school year. Some preliminary competitions are held in late Fall and early Winter, but the major races occur in the Spring.

UCI’s boathouse is located on Shellmaker Island, about 4 miles from campus. During a typical practice, the crews row the length and width of Newport Bay, one of the most beautiful marinas on the west coast. UCI’s 2000 meter home race course is located on Lido Channel, the “main street” of Newport Bay.

UCI races the crews from five other UC campuses (UCLA, Cal, UCSD, UCSB, UCD); Pac-10 schools (USC, University of Washington, Oregon State University, etc.); and local universities (Long Beach State University, San Diego State University, University of San Diego, Loyola-Marymount University, etc.).

At UCI, rowing is an academically focused intercollegiate sports program with an emphasis on excellence in all university pursuits. The crews boast successes on the water with 5 Olympic showings, and in the classroom with numerous Scholar-Athletes and alumni who continue on to graduate school and tremendously successful careers ranging broadly across all industries.

UCI’s proud rowing heritage includes regular regatta wins; conference championships (WIRA); national awards; and US Olympians.

The Men’s crew maintains a busy race schedule, and travels yearly to regattas throughout California. It is also an annual goal to qualify for the ACRA races in Gainesville, Georgia.


Fill out a recruitment questionnaire here.