Adaptive rowing

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Oksana Masters & Rob Jones of the US in the mixed sculls (TA 2x) final at the Paralympics, London 2012. The rowers are fixed to the seat.

Adaptive rowing (or para-rowing) is a category of rowing race for those with physical disabilities. Under FISA rules there are three categories for adaptive rowers:

PR3 (previously LTA - Legs, Trunk, Arms) 
Use of at least one leg, trunk and arms. Also for those with visual and intellectual impairments. Rowed with standard boats and sliding seats.
PR2 (previously TA - Trunk and Arms) 
Only use of trunk muscles. Boat has fixed seat.
PR1 (previously AS - Arms and Shoulders) 
Limited trunk control. Boat has fixed seat and rower is strapped at upper chest level to only allow shoulder and arm movements.

At FISA World Championships there are now 9[1] boat events (standard nomenclature is used):

  • 4+ Mixed PR3
  • 2x Mixed PR3
  • 2- Men PR3
  • 2- Women PR3
  • 2x Mixed PR2
  • 1x Men PR2
  • 1x Women PR2
  • 1x Men PR1
  • 1x Women PR1

Racing was held over 1,000 m (rather than the standard 2,000 m), but from 2017 the distance was changed to the standard 2,000m.[2] In mixed events half the crew must be male and other half female (coxswain may be of either gender and may be able bodied). Single shells for the PR1 category must have stabilising pontoons attached to the riggers.

Adaptive events were added to the World Rowing Championships in 2002 and took place at the 2008 Summer Paralympics in Beijing, China.


  1. ^ "Rules of Racing" (PDF). FISA. January 2018. Retrieved 31 January 2019.
  2. ^ "Summary of proposed changes to the FISA Rules of Racing, related Bye-Laws and Event Regulations" (PDF). FISA. Retrieved 13 February 2017.

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