Being an athlete comes with positive and negative consequences. Most sports only last for one season, causing an athlete to get “out of shape” and lose their motivation during the off-season. However, Friends of Port Rowing, offers year-round options to ensure that their athletes are ready to compete when the time comes.
Over the years, Port Rowing has become the largest rowing program on Long Island. It is a community-based program that allows athletes from other towns to participate and learn the love of the sport.
More than 15 schools are represented and no student athlete is turned away.
“I do it for the love of the game and love of the sport, not for the money,” said president Mitch Tampkin, who helped found the community-based program along with Monika Dorman.
“The Port Rowing community has changed other people’s lives and creates a great deal of joy and satisfaction that you are making a difference in someone else’s life.”
Port Rowing offers summer training camps for all ages, ranging from ages 13 to 19.
“I participated in the Port Rowing summer training camp last summer and it was a great way for me and the rest of my boat to stay in shape for the fall season so that we were ready to race,” said Carter Shields, who will be rowing at the University of Virginia (UVA) in the fall. “I am looking forward to rowing with Port Rowing again this summer to be ready for my upcoming season at UVA.”
The summer programs are designed to help athletes gain a sense of the true competition the sport has to offer and greater develop one’s skills. The high school training camp is broken down into three sessions with trips to Philadelphia and New Jersey for regattas.
Similarly, the middle school training camp is broken down into three sessions, yet they do not compete in any summer regattas. The middle school training camp is programed to teach young athletes the techniques of rowing and gain knowledge about how the sport is played. It is geared toward athletes who are interested in the sport, yet do not know much about it. It is a transitional camp where athletes will learn the sport first on land and then move onto the water in order to ensure that the athletes are safe and knowledgeable about the boat and the sport.
“I was inspired to join Port Rowing since I loved kayaking,” said senior Bailey Lipset, who will be rowing at Lehigh University in the fall. I have even decided to continue this sport in college because of the bond that binds the girls on the team and the idea of challenging myself both mentally and physically.” This past season, the team has made it to the national championships and the girls finished second in the nation and the boys a close fifth.
Sydney Rosenthal is a contributing writer at Anton Media Group.