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Rules of Rowing

Proposed rules changes for the 2015 USRowing Rules of Rowing

Each year the Referee Committee receives proposals for modifying the USRowing Rules of Rowing. These follow the format found in the front of the Rule Book. This year, in addition to receiving several proposed rule changes, the Referee Committee received an extensive proposal to re-structure the Rules of Rowing into three parts: Rules - designed for competitors and coaches; a Referee Procedures Manual - designed for USRowing officials; and an LOC Manual - designed to assist event organizers in structuring and running successful events. A proposal was also submitted by members of the High Performance Committee to restructure Article VI of the Rules dealing with Trials events.

Proposed changes will be reviewed by the Referee Committee during the year. Once the changes are reviewed and any clarifications added, the proposals will be posted to the USRowing website October 1-31 for public review and comment. Any pertinent comments received will be reviewed and the proposal modified appropriately. The final version of the proposals, accompanied by the Referee Committee’s recommendations, will be sent to the Board of Directors for its consideration at the December meeting. 

Questions or comments can be directed to your Referee Regional Representative or John Wik, Director of Referee Programs at USRowing at

The Proposed Rule Changes for 2015 have been organized using the following format:

Re-structure of Rules of Rowing Documents

  • Author letter describing the re-structure of the Rules of Rowing and summary of the overall intent and approach (Link to PDF)
  • Proposed re-structured Rules of Rowing following the format required in the Rules including: The Rule, the Proposed Rule Change, and the Reason for the Rule Change (Link to PDF)
  • The Proposed companion Referee Procedures Manual (Link to PDF)
  • The Proposed companion LOC Manual (Link to PDF)
  • The following document presents the entire re-structured rule book, Referee Procedures Manual, and LOC Manual, as proposed under the reorganization of the content. It has been prepared to allow the reader to better understand the complete proposal. There are ongoing discussions regarding the formatting and other layout issues, but it accurately represents the vision of the final product. (Link to PDF)

Re-structure of Trials Rules Documents

  • Author letter from the HPC submitting proposed restructuring of Article VI - Trials Rules (Link to PDF)
  • Proposed re-structured Article VI of the Rules of Rowing following the format required in the Rules including: The Current Rule, the Proposed Rule Change, and the Reason for the Rule Change (Link to PDF) and addendum (Link to PDF)

Summary of Proposed Rules Submitted by Members, USRowing Staff, and Referee Committee

  • Proposed Rule Changes as submitted by the membership of USRowing, USRowing Staff and Referee Committee (Link to PDF)

Click below to view the 2014 USRowing Rules of Rowing.

If you are interested in purchasing a copy of the rules of rowing in book format, please contact USRowing at 1-800-314-4ROW (4769). The cost is $5 and includes shipping. To get a free copy of Adobe Acrobat Reader, please go to Adobe's website at: