Para-rowing Programs

  • Empty Chairs
  • At the Dock

Row New York’s para-rowing program provides land-based and on-water workouts for para-athletes of all abilities. The program offers all levels of involvement: para-athletes can row for recreation, rehabilitation, and competition. Athletes begin the program learning the basics of rowing on ergometers, then move to on-water rowing on stable barges, and for competitive athletes, to rowing shells fitted with pontoons. Our para-rowing programs take place with our experienced coaches on the calm and safe waters of Meadow Lake in Flushing Meadows-Corona Park in Queens.

Feedback from our adaptive athletes:

“I really love rowing. I like the idea of being an athlete! I like that it gives me a challenge and a goal. I like that it’s different – all my friends do wheelchair basketball and racing – not many people know about rowing.”
“Rowing helps my brain – it keeps me focused. I love it and I get to make new friends. Rowing also make my hands and wrists stronger.”
This program provides 10 weeks of land-based and on-water rowing activities to middle school students with disabilities who visit our Meadow Lake boathouse in Flushing Meadows-Corona Park.
This program is for novice rowers looking to learn a new activity or experienced rowers who enjoy rowing for its great fitness purposes.
This program is geared toward athletes who desire to compete at indoor competitions on the ergometers and eventually on-water regattas in racing shells, including C.R.A.S.H.-B’s in Boston and the BAYADA regatta in Philadelphia.

Why New York City?

We live in a city surrounded by water, but many residents, especially those with disabilities, have few opportunities to participate in recreational or competitive on water activities. Cities around the country are creating para-rowing programs for their community members. Row New York is excited to create strong and unique programming for New Yorkers with disabilities.


Rowing develops both mental and physical skills and the potential for lifetime fitness.

Para-athletes can row at any level – for recreation, for competition, and for rehabilitation therapy.

Rowing provides an opportunity for the integration of para-athletes within their local rowing communities.

Rowing allows each athlete to focus on his/her own physical progress while also contributing to the success of the team.

As stated in an article in Palaestra, a forum for physical education and recreation for people with disabilities:

Adaptive rowing, for people who spend their waking hours in wheelchairs or on crutches, provides a respite, a chance to leave that chair or discard those crutches, a chance to think and feel – even look – like any able-bodied rower…. Adaptive rowing can help satisfy the quest for personal independence, physical self-sufficiency, mental self-dignity, and total freedom on the river.

Note: Athletes who take Access-a-Ride to the Queens boathouse should request  ”Parks—the Boathouse at Flushing Meadows.”

Visit our volunteering page for more information about how to get involved with these programs.

If you’re interested in para-rowing, contact Jennie Trayes at or call 718-433-3075.