Lightweight athletes

Lightweight info

This note is for Wayland Weston Varsity athletes, including novices moving up to varsity and selected novices who are considering rowing as lightweights this spring.

US Rowing is going to be aggressively involved in education and monitoring around lightweight rowing. Top of mind is the long-term health of athletes. This is a major and welcome shift of policy by US Rowing.

The basic principle is that, starting this year, only “natural” lightweights will be allowed to compete in this division. No more “making weight” on race day, no more sweat runs. The limit is 130 pounds for girls, and 150 pounds for boys. Athletes should eat to fuel, your weight is whatever is healthy for your body, and from that, the lightweight roster is determined. If you prefer not to race as a lightweight this spring, that’s great! There will be plenty of fast boats to go around.

With that in mind, here’s the term process for the lightweight athlete.


1. Think over whether or not you would like to compete as a lightweight for the spring season.

2. Talk it over with your parents. Have them sign the parent’s permission form (to be attached).

3. Make an appointment with your physician.

4. Tell Paul Hoffman ( of your decision, and the date of your physician’s visit. (Paul is coordinating the team’s lightweight registration.)


5. Have your physician fill out the attached form. It requires them to provide a fair amount of historical data, so give them warning of what you need beforehand.


6. All forms – signed by a doctor, parent, and athlete – must be RECEIVED by Paul Hoffman. Paul Hoffman – 45 Old Concord Road – Lincoln MA 01773. Keep a copy for your records.

A note about the calendar

US Rowing has noted that there are NO EXCEPTIONS to its mid-March deadline for organization registration. It would be a bummer for you to be excluded from racing in the spring because you waited too long to get your forms in. Things can go wrong, doctor’s appointments get canceled because of snow, the dog eats the signed form, etc. Give yourself extra time.

Final framing comment

It’s important to remember that WWRA is NOT primarily a lightweight program. Over the course of the spring, athletes of all weights will be placed in boats that have the best chance of doing well. It is possible that one or more of these boats will be in lightweight events. Getting into a potential lightweight boat will likely be a competitive situation, so you should choose the weight class at which you feel strong and vibrant. It is quite possible that some athletes preparing as lightweights will not actually end up in a lightweight boat. The most important thing is that you do what is healthy for your body. Eat to fuel, be strong and healthy, and then find out if that means that you will race as a lightweight.

Your coaches look forward to working with you to enhance your strength and fitness, and to create fast boats!


Wayland Weston Rowing Association, Inc. - PO Box 5508 - Wayland, MA 01778-1032

Many images courtesy of
Site questions or comments to