Vesper Boat Club - Return to Rowing Guidelines


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Vesper Boat Club - Return to Rowing Guidelines

Last Update March 15, 2021


The purpose of this policy is to provide guidance to Vesper Boat Club members as they safely return to rowing. This policy applies to all members using any Vesper owned or leased multiple person boats. The procedures outlined in this document are subject to change according to federal, state and/or local rules and regulations and/or as determined by the Board of Directors of Vesper Boat Club. These guidelines are supplemental to the Vesper Boat Club Reopening Plan.


Stay Informed

Please be sure to stay informed about best practices pertaining to COVID transmission risk mitigation. Be sure to bring any concerns to the Vesper Pandemic Committee at

Information about COVID-19 can be found on the following websites:



Self-monitor for any symptoms before coming to the boathouse. A list of symptoms is available on the CDC website. If you do not feel well, do not come to the boathouse.

Individuals who have traveled outside of the region, should consult the Pennsylvania Department of Health’s website for quarantine recommendations.



Masks must be worn in and around the boathouse, on the apron, and on the docks. If you are rowing a single, your mask may be removed once you are on the water and must be replaced prior to docking.

As per Philadelphia Department of Public Health guidelines, all Vesper Boat Club members rowing in team boats must wear masks for the entirety of the row unless all team boat members are from the same household.

According to The Centers for Disease Control, masks must be worn over your nose and mouth and fit snugly against your face without gaps.

Individuals who are in a High Performance training bubble and who are training for the Olympics or Senior World Championships trials are exempt from wearing masks on the water as per an exception granted by the Philadelphia Department of Public Health.


Social Distancing

A minimum distance of 6 feet must be maintained between all members in and around the boathouse.


“Get in, Train, Get out”

As per USRowing guidelines to minimize unnecessary exposure, “Training should focus on a “get in, train, get out” approach.

Please arrive on time for your boat reservation, do not delay in the boathouse or on the dock, and please exit the premises immediately upon completion of equipment sanitization.

The number of individuals in the boat bay or on the dock will be limited to be able to maintain 6 feet distance. If you cannot maintain 6 feet distance, please exit the boat bay immediately.


Hand Hygiene

Sanitize or wash your hands with soap prior to arrival at the boathouse. Follow hand- washing protocols regularly when coming into contact with high-touch surfaces. If no soap or water are available, hand sanitizer may be used. High touch surfaces may include doorknobs, hoses, water spigots, boat bay door keypad, boats, oarlocks, and oar handles.


Equipment Disinfecting

EPA approved disinfectant will be provided by Vesper for all sanitizing purposes. “Dip- buckets” containing disinfectant, wipes and hand sanitizer will be stationed in each boat bay.

Oar handles must be disinfected after each use. Please dip oar handles in the buckets containing disinfectant.

Rowing shell—wheels and tracks—must be wiped down after each use.

Slings, hoses, and other miscellaneous equipment must also be disinfected after each use.


Reservation System

Reserve all boats, including personal singles, in advance using the iCrew app. You must log in upon returning from a row. If necessary, this information may be used for contact tracing.


Forming Bubbles

Currently Vesper members may form bubbles of only two members. These two members will be allowed to row a 2x with each other. Members may only be part of one two-person bubble.

Same household members may only add one additional person to their household bubble.

Both two-person bubble members must co-sign and email these guidelines to

No bubble substitutions are permitted.


Changing Bubbles

For any member who would like to change bubble partners, both members may not row with any other non-same-household members for at least 10 days, or until a negative COVID test is obtained. After the designated 10-day time period has elapsed, they may each form a new double pairing following these guidelines. During the time between double pairings, the members can row singles if weather and the four oar rule permits.


COVID Positive Diagnosis and Contact Tracing

If any member is diagnosed with COVID-19 and has been at the club within 14 days of a positive test, they must inform the Captain at If necessary, the Captain or Pandemic Committee will contact the Department of Public Health.

As per the Centers for Disease Control: a close contact is anyone who was within 6 feet of a person infected with COVID-19 for more than 15 minutes. An infected person can spread COVID-19 starting 48 hours (or 2 days) before the person had any symptoms or has tested positive for COVID-19.

If a member who is in a double-bubble becomes ill or has been in close-contact with someone who is diagnosed with COVID-19, then all exposed members including the other members of the bubble (as well as any household members who belong to Vesper) must self-quarantine.

The Centers for Disease Control recommends the quarantine may end after one of the following:

  • After day 10 without testing
  • After day 7, if you have received a negative test result (test must occur on day 5 or later

In either of the above situations, the CDC recommends that you continue monitoring for potential symptoms until it has been more than 14 days since your possible exposure.


Policies for Vesper-Owned Boats Outside of Vesper Boat Club:

Members using Vesper Boat Club owned boats at alternative locations are subject to the guidance set forth in this document as well as that of the launching location or host club. If there is a conflict in policies, the rower is to follow the more conservative guidelines. Questions about policies in regards to boats outside of Vesper Boat Club can be directed to the Pandemic Committee at


Last Updated: March 15, 2021