Brazil is not short of rowing. With its many rivers and the need to cross these bodies of
water, rowing becomes a necessity. The flat water version of rowing that is known at the
Olympics and on the international racing scene, is less common. But Brazil is preparing for
a big rowing push that has plans in place through to 2016.
Rowing in Brazil is concentrated in just a few
pockets of activity. The country has three training
venues based in Rio de Janeiro, Sao Paulo and
Porto Alegre. They are centred in these three
large cities due to the rowing clubs’ connection
to major football clubs. There is also a regional
influence on rowing centred around Italian and
German colonisation. This has meant that the
sport is stronger in the southern parts of the
The biggest idols in Brazilian rowing are the
Carvalho brothers who are two-time Pan
American Games champions (1983 and 1987).
They also finished seventh at the 1987 World
Rowing Championships in the pair.
Currently there are 495 rowers registered in
Brazil, 35 of them are at the senior level. The
top rowers, following the results of the regional
championships, receive aid from their clubs
(financial or otherwise). There is also a federal
government programme that supports a number
of athletes that have recorded favourable results.
“The reality for the majority of athletes is hard,”
says Julio Noronha who was Brazilian Rowing’s
technical director and now works for the Brazilian
Noronha admits that Brazil has a number of
hurdles when it comes to the development
of the sport. Noronha notes that it lacks an
outlet in the school and university system.
“We don’t have a culture for sport to be practiced
and encouraged at school and university,” he
says. “Rowing is basically initiated through the
Brazil, however, can claim a degree of success
at the Beijing Olympic Games. The country
qualified a lightweight women’s double for >