Having rowed at GUBC for the past 4 years I have had the privilege to see the club grow from strength to strength in both numbers and success. The club has allowed me to fulfill a number of dreams and ambitions which before coming to university were just exactly that- dreams and ambitions. I couldn’t leave GUBC without writing a small piece to explain to people why I row, and why anyone considering rowing at Glasgow University should commit everything they can to the sport.
Rowing quickly becomes one of the biggest parts of your life if you choose to fully commit however for me, this has 100% been worth it. The sport itself becomes addictive. While many of the sessions in the middle of winter can lead to you to question why you would drag yourself out of bed to row on the river Clyde with numb hands and throbbing legs, the satisfaction of completion outweighs the pain every time. The sport requires you to regularly push yourself to your limit and constantly leaves you aspiring for more. The commitment and motivation required to find that extra gear becomes unquestionable. Particularly when you find yourself in a crew with eight other people who you know are relying on you and are equally experiencing the relentless pain that comes with rowing. Although at times your legs may feel they can’t take another stroke, your chest feels like it may explode and everything in your body is telling you to stop, the knowledge that every person in your crew is committing every ounce of energy they have is more than enough motivation for me.
GUBC has much more to offer than rowing itself. The social atmosphere is one of the biggest reasons to join and fully involve your-self in the club. The intensity of the training results in those you train with very quickly becoming your best friends. The squad atmosphere drives the training forward and provides support when times get tough. I would not have achieved what I have were it not for the many different people over my 4 years who I have had the privilege to train, race and equally as important, let off steam with.
Joining the club in first year, finances were scarce with volunteer coaches doing a fantastic job with the resources available. However, over the years there has been a significant amount of investment in the club, in that we now have a full time Director of rowing, a full time senior coach and a part time novice coach. Our boat fleet has slowly grown and continues to do so with the invaluable funding. This would not have been possible without the ongoing support from Glasgow University Sport, SportScotland and Scottish Rowing. With a yearly training camp to Lovere in Italy, it is clear that the club is moving in the right direction.
From my four years at GUBC I have achieved 3 bronze, 1 silver and 4 gold BUCS medals. I have achieved a dream to row for the u23 GB rowing team as well as winning Elite Lightweight Quad at Henley Women’s Regatta. I have represented Glasgow University at the European University Championships and won gold at the Commonwealth Regatta.
Whilst I have enjoyed a great deal of success, I have Andy Barton our Director of Rowing to thank for making these dreams come true. For your coaching, direction and continued support, you have helped me become the athlete I am today. Thank you for motivating me through tough times and for celebrating the highs with me- it’s been a ball.
I cannot deny that GUBC has played a massive part in shaping the person that I am today. I have made friends who I will have long beyond my years at university and memories that I will treasure for the rest of my life. Now as I prepare to dawn the black and gold of Glasgow University for my final races with GUBC, I look forward to ending the season on a high and wish the club every success in the future.
“Don’t cry because it’s over, smile because it happened.”