1st annual 24 Strokes for Heart rowing marathon a success
courtesy of Wave Weekly
courtesy of Wave Weekly

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- The Jacksonville men’s and women’s rowing teams partnered up with the Brooks Rehabilitation Adaptive Sports and Recreation Program and the Jacksonville Rowing Club to log more than 1,300 miles in the 24-hour marathon that stretched from Friday to Saturday at the Negaard Rowing Center. 

The event dubbed the 24 Strokes for Heart Ergathon was part of the American Heart Association’s National Wear Red Day designed to raise awareness for women’s heart health. 

Overall, the 82 total participants rowed 2,159,531 meters or roughly 1,342 miles.  The rowers got started at noon on Friday and continued nonstop until noon on Saturday.  There were at least two rowing machines being used at all times with up to 16 being used simultaneously.

The JU men’s rowing team had 30 participants and recorded 1,026,594 meters, while there were 27 female rowers that rowed 844,699 meters.   

There were 23 representatives from the Brooks Rehabilitation Adaptive Sports and Recreation Program that participated in the event.  They recorded an impressive 236,638 meters, many of which were upper body only. 

“I was really proud of how our JU team members represented the American Heart Association, as well as themselves and their university,” said JU rowing coach Jim Mitchell. “It was inspiring to see the rowers from our Brooks Adaptive Rowing program participate. As a whole, the participants surpassed the amount of meters I thought they would, and they had a good time exercising and working for a great cause.”

Both the men’s and women’s teams kick off their spring schedule on March 9 at the Keuper Cup in Fellsmere, Fla.