Rowing is easily adaptable and provides athletes with a physical, sensory or intellectual disability the opportunity to be active on the water, get involved in a fun and friendly environment, and participate in competitions. 

Adaptive rowing is suitable for a wide range of persons with a disability, including but not limited to spinal cord injury including paraplegia and quadriplegia; amputations; visual impairment and blindness; cerebral palsy; spina bifida; intellectual disabilities and hearing impairments.

Para-rowing events were added to the World Rowing Championships in 2002 and to the 2008 Summer Paralympic Games in Beijing, China. Since rowing’s inclusion to the Paralympic programme, the GB Rowing Team has won gold medals in Beijing, London and Rio.




Scottish Rowing adopts the International Rowing Federation (FISA) Para-Rowing system of classification which places rowers into classes according to how much their impairment impacts rowing.

These internationally recognised classes are:

  • PR3-PD (Physical Disability)
  • PR3-VI (Visual Impairment)
  • PR2
  • PR1

Rowers who have a disability but do not meet the Para-Rowing eligibility criteria may be eligible for an Adaptive Rowing Classification. These classes are accepted at events that offer Adaptive Rowing Competition

  • AR3-PD (Physical Disability)
  • AR2-LD (Learning Disability)
  • AR2
  • AR1

For more details on classification: