Press Release - Erg Ed Comes to Ann Arbor

Seattle, WA – The George Pocock Rowing Foundation and USRowing are pleased to announce Ann Arbor Public Schools as a recipient of the 2017-2018 Erg Ed Grant Award. This grant provides Ann Arbor Public Schools with erg equipment, access to the Erg Ed Curriculum, and comprehensive teacher training throughout the year. The second 2017-2018 Erg Ed Grant recipient will be announced late 2017.

Kim Jackson, District PE/Health Department Chair 6-12 for Ann Arbor Public Schools, believes “Erg Ed is important because it exposes many students to aspects of a sport (rowing) they may never have known existed before participating in the program.” It also allows Ann Arbor Public Schools to “further diversify our Physical Education curriculum to keep the interest of our students and keep them motivated to move.”

“Rowing has been part of the Ann Arbor high school athletics culture for sometime now,” says Kit Bennett, Director of Washtenaw Rowing Center and Head Coach of Skyline Crew. “Providing our student-athletes with an option, that doesn’t require starting the sport at the age of 5, really is phenomenal.” Recognizing the benefits of rowing and the opportunities it provides students, Ann Arbor Public Schools supports scholastic rowing teams at three public high schools: Skyline High School, Huron High School, and Pioneer High School. Implementing the Erg Ed program district wide for middle and high school students builds on the district’s existing structure to support student’s entry and participation in the sport.

Washtenaw Rowing Center is partnering with Ann Arbor Public Schools to help support the implementation of Erg Ed, in addition to providing opportunities for students interested in taking their Erg Ed skills to the water. Bennet remarks, “rowing is traditionally seen as a “country club” sport, our hope with Erg Ed is that we will break down this perception and make it more accessible to the whole city.”

This grant opportunity is only possible because of the enthusiastic and generous support of USRowing.  Through their support, Ann Arbor is the fifth city in the nation to receive an Erg Ed Grant. “US Rowing’s commitment to the expansion of Erg Ed is a testament to the power of partnerships.  Together we’re bringing new kids to the sport everyday, and raising awareness on a scale that wouldn’t be possible with this type of cooperation,” says Matthew Lacey, Executive Director for the Pocock Foundation.  USRowing’s investment in the expansion of Erg Ed stems from their vision to improve youth wellness as well as connect more young people to the sport of rowing.

“We are excited to continue our Erg Ed partnership with the George Pocock Rowing Foundation, expanding the program to Ann Arbor this fall,” says Patrick McNerney, USRowing CEO. “Erg Ed promotes an active lifestyle and introduces the sport and its values to a wide range of students. The program has had a positive impact on kids of all ages and backgrounds, and we look forward to building on the success we’ve seen in Memphis, Allentown, Chicago and Portland.”

Launched in 2010 as part of Seattle Public Schools physical education curriculum, the Pocock Foundation’s Erg Ed program teaches teamwork, exercise intensity and goal setting through a fun, highly engaging, five-day core curriculum. More than 12,000 students across eight school districts will participate in Erg Ed during the 2017-2018 academic year.


About The George Pocock Rowing Foundation

The George Pocock Rowing Foundation is a non-profit based in Seattle, WA. Through building and supporting rowing programs and facilities, the Pocock Foundation promotes access to rowing, excellence in rowing, and uses rowing as a means to foster physical activity, health, leadership, and community engagement.

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