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Pulling (Fixed Seat Rowing) (FS120660)

Pulling (Fixed Seat Rowing) (FS120660)

(Published Jan 2018 replacing version Sep 2013)


This information refers to running pulling for a group of young people, or to do it for themselves if they are a young person. It should be read in conjunction with the A-Z directory of activities at scouts.org.uk/a-z, and Policy, Organisation and Rules (POR) of The Scout Association.

What is pulling (fixed seat rowing)?

Pulling is propelling an open craft primarily by the use of oars where there is fixed seating, and often includes a coxswain and a crew. The term pulling is normally used for large open boats such as Gigs, Cutters and Whalers, but also includes small fixed seat boats such as the Pioneer. Pulling Permits can also include Punting (propelling a boat with a pole), Gondolas and Sculling Over the Stern.

What is a pulling (fixed seat rowing) permit?

The adventurous activity permit scheme is designed to ensure that only people with the relevant skills and experience lead adventurous activities for the young people. Therefore all activities classed as adventurous can only be led by someone holding the appropriate permit. Additionally young people (under 18) can take part in adventurous activities for themselves with personal activity permits.

A pulling permit is required for all pulling taking place except in class C water. Definitions of water classifications can be found in POR.

Levels of permit

Pulling permits can be issued for any class of water. Each class of permit can be further restricted (such as types of boat, non-tidal etc) to end up with an individual permit to the level of the competence and requirements of any person.

Types of permit

There are three types of permit available for pulling. These are:

Permit limitations

  • Look after up to six single-handed and double-handed craft or eight people, whichever is fewer, at one time. You need to remain on the water whenever the activity is taking place.
  • Look after one pulling boat containing more than two people at a time. You need to remain in the boat whenever it is being used.


When supervising other boats the holder of a pulling supervisor permit needs to designate a leader for each boat. This designation lasts only for the current activity while the permit holder is supervising.

People designated as boat leaders should hold the skills and be responsible enough control the boat safely in the waters that they are in. There is no problem with making young people boat leaders if they are up to the role, and it can be used as a useful development tool.


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