Lunds University Rowing Club Connects Sport and Friendships

Lunds University Rowing Club Connects Sport and Friendships

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Photo: Lukas J. Herbers.

Being a part of Lunds University Rowing Club is an opportunity to join competitions in Sweden and Denmark. The biggest dream of the team is to represent Sweden in the European Universities Games. But first, the rowers have to practice for the 24 hour row and raise enough money to rebuild their dock.

Lunds University Rowing Club was founded in 1992 when two students of Lund had the idea to challenge Uppsala in rowing inspired by the classic rowing races between Oxford and Cambridge. Uppsala agreed and the first Universitetskapprodden (UK-race) between the universities took place at the river Fyrisån in Uppsala in October 1992. Lund came out as the winner and since then it’s a yearly competition that takes place in Lund or Uppsala in the beginning of October.

Nowadays, Lunds Universitets Roddklub (LURK) has 22 members and most of them come from other countries.

“We are happy about all the internationals in our club, but we would like to see more Swedish students, because they could stay longer than only for one semester. That would make it easier to plan competitions for the future”, Vice President Agnes Hedengren says.

As rowing is not the most popular sport in Sweden the members try to build a bigger community and joined Akademiska Föreningen (AF) for establishing it as a university sport to students this year.

“It was a success and many people showed up for a free training. But joining the club also means that you spend lots of time at training and competitions. Time that not everyone has”, member Michael Igoe says.

The team is practicing five times a week, but only three times are mandatory. Before competitions they even meet more often to get better prepared. And as the club is organized by the students themselves they invest much more time for planning events.

Another complicated factor is that the club is located in Malmö because there is no water in Lund.

“You put lots of time into the sport. But it’s worth it because you build up many new and great friendships. And you do the sport you love so it doesn’t feel like a burden”, President Clara Hübinger says.

Every year, the club is joining around five competitions and the rowers just came back from Jönköping where they won three gold medals and one silver and one bronze medal at the national indoor race.

Now, they will practice for the 24 hour row which will be from 17.00 31st of March until 17.00 1st of April. Two ergs (indoor rowing machines) going for the whole day and the row itself will be live streamed so everyone who is interested can have a look how the rowers are doing.

Within the 24 hour row, the club hopes to raise money to fix their broken dock. At the beginning of 2017, a large storm passed through Malmö and the dock broke in half. Even if it is partly covered by the insurance, the team would like to train outside again as soon as possible and that’s why they hope to receive enough money.

“We aim for 10.000kr. Last year, we were rowing 24 hours for a charity for refugee children. There, 8000kr were donated which was amazing. But this time, we need more to finally go out again and do the sport we all love”, Michael Igoe says.

When asked if the team is joining international competitions, Agnes Hedegren explained that except from the Copenhagen race they first have to focus on national races. But the goal is to represent Sweden sometime in the European Universities Games which is a competition governed by the European University Sports Association (EUSA).

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