Frequently Asked Questions

Why Rowing?
Rowing boasts the highest calorie consumption of any sport. Rowing is low impact. No bad knees or elbows. Rowing is often used in physical therapy for rehab of other sports injuries.
What’s the difference between a rowing machine and a real sculler?
A quality rowing machine provides the same exercise as a rowing shell. The difference is largely that rowing a shell is outdoors and on the water. Rowing a real sculler doesn’t feel like exercise, it feels like you’re boating and having fun. For many people this is the difference between loving to exercise and boating it!

How do I get to the lake?
All the shells we make are designed to be easily car topped on any type of roof rack carrier. We also make a safe, inexpensive, foam block system that doesn’t have to be attached to the car. Our boats can be car topped upside down (so you don’t have to worry about rain collecting) or right side up in fiberglass slings for short, quick, trips. See our accessory page for details.

Can one person carry it?
Yes! Most of the boats only weigh about 45 lbs. and can be easily carried or car topped by one person.

How do I store it?
It is ok to store your Little River shell outside; simply set it down in a set of land racks and strap it down. Others prefer to hang their shell above their car in the garage with a set of ceiling slings. This is especially convenient for quick loading and unloading.

Is it hard to learn?
With proper instruction, either by instruction video or a personal lesson, most people learn to row in one afternoon. Little River provides lessons to our customers from Maine to Florida. Some people like to start with a set of outrigger floats to really insure safe learning. They are available for rent or purchase.

Can my kids row?
Yes, kids often pick it up quicker than adults. The outrigger floats are a good idea for children under 15, for safety. We also have a couple of models that carry a passenger seat.

How do I know what type of shell is right for me and my family?
There are two things to first consider when choosing your shell: the water conditions you will mostly be in and your personal athletic ability. These two issues must be balanced when making your decision.

If you’ll most likely incur windchop or boat wakes when you row, you will prefer an open water design. The beginner or intermediate athlete will enjoy the Heritage, Sprint or Cambridge. The intermediate or advanced athlete will prefer the Cambridge, or in light chop, the Pro Am. If you’ll most likely be rowing in calm (no chop) water you can row in any type of shell or skiff. Choose on of the features and stability level you like.

How stable are shells, verses the Heritage?
All shells are unstable without the oars. Shells need to be about 3 feet wide at the waterline (30″ for women) before it is stable enough to safely climb in without holding onto the oars. This is wider than kayaks because in a shell, we must sit higher than our feet. So all shells, by name, have an element of balance involved. Active people can learn to balance a shell in a half-hour or so, especially the open water type shells. Flat water types take a good bit longer to master.

If you don’t want that instability, consider the Heritage. It is stable enough to get in with ease without the oars. It is safer for cold weather rowing, and only about 1 mile an hour slower than open water shells.

Why not build a Catamaran Shell? Isn’t that more stable?
It turns out to be a bad idea in waves. The problem: when a wave goes under one hull, that hull goes up; that oar goes flying, and the other oar goes down, digging into the water. You can’t prevent this. In a mono hull, you can lean your body left and right to keep the boat relatively flat, and this really maters in waves.

Is the Heritage available lighter?
Yes, the Heritage 15 in carbon weighs in at 62 lbs

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