Our Novice Men’s and Women’s Squads welcome complete beginners. The athletes are gradually introduced to the racing season, following a training program set by professional coaches to enable them to compete at a high level by the end of the year.

The novice squad is formed in October. The first stage of becoming a novice at UCLBC is coming to meet us and sign up at the Welcome Fair. This might be online this year but we shall still be having a virtual stall you can ‘visit’! Then the following weekend is the Give It A Go weekend which gives people the chance to try rowing on the river before deciding whether they want to join up or not. Following the give-it-a-go weekend, the novice squads are put together and regular training is started. Whilst lockdown measures are still in place, we shall hopefully be able to get you on the water as soon as possible!

Weekly training:

Training is done on the river on Wednesday afternoons and at the weekend,  land training is done at Bloomsbury Fitness through the week. The whole club also comes together for weekly circuits. Through training often on the water, and in the gym, we get everyone up to a good standard as quickly as possible.


The novice squads enter numerous races over the year. These include: Cambridge Head, the Allom Cup, WeHORR and HORR, BUCS Head/Regatta and more. After the summer exams they aim to qualify for Henley Women’s and Henley Royal Regatta alongside the seniors, albeit in the beginners category.

Training camps:

There’s are two main training camps in the year. The first is in January (based at the boat house in Chiswick) and another one in Avis (Portugal) in the Easter holidays. These are very beneficial for everyone’s rowing and a lot of fun!

Our Novice Women in Avis, 2019


Give It A Go sign-up form:

Novice Women’s Captain – Niamh Flood

Niamh UCL

Novice Men’s Captain – Tim Widmayer