Cal Women’s Crew Camp
Improve Your Skills And Have Fun at Cal Crew Camps
US Sports Camps is pleased to once again partner with the top ranked Cal Women's Crew Team for another competitive summer of crew. The three camp sessions will be directed by the highly accomplished and experienced Cal Women's Crew Coaching Staff.
The Bears finished the 2016 regular season at #1 in the country and backed up this stellar season as the National Champions at the NCAA Rowing Championships. This is a program that has established a tradition of excellence at or near the top of the women's collegiate rowing.
- In depth view of the top collegiate women's crew program in the country
- Video technique analysis on the erg and on the water
- Campers receive a Cal Camp Tank Top
- View More Details ⟩
Camp Director Al Acosta
Al Acosta, a 1993 University of California, Berkeley graduate who became a five-time National Coach of the Year leading the Stanford women’s lightweight team, is in his third season as head women’s crew coach for the Golden Bears.View Al Acosta's Bio ⟩
Acosta, who grew up in Berkeley, attended Berkeley High School and graduated Phi Beta Kappa from Cal with a degree in fine arts in 1993, started the Stanford lightweight program in 2001 and guided the Cardinal for 13 consecutive years. He led the squad to four straight IRA national titles from 2010-13 before the school posted a runner-up finish this past spring. Acosta was honored as the National Lightweight Coach of the Year for the first time in 2008 when Stanford earned a bronze medal at the national regatta, as well as for each of the team’s national championships.
In 2013, Rowing Magazine named Stanford as the “Crew of the Year” as the top collegiate rowing program in the country. In addition to on-the-water success, Acosta’s student-athletes have achieved a 100 percent graduation rate during his tenure.
Prior to accepting his role at Stanford, Acosta worked with the country’s top junior programs, the Oakland Strokes rowing program, for eight years. He served as head girls’ coach from 1994-96 and as head boys’ coach from 1997-2001. His boys’ varsity eight captured California state titles in 1998 and ’99 and finished among the nation’s top three in 1997, ’98 and ’99. In addition, Acosta was the head men’s master’s coach for the Lake Merritt Rowing Club in Oakland from 1997-2001.
On the national level, Acosta served as chair of the Collegiate Rowing Coaches Association Lightweight Committee from 2007-09. He has also been a head coach and associate head coach at national team development camps for both high school boys and college women.
Acosta and his wife, Linda, have two children and reside in San Francisco.
Camp Director Vanessa Tavalero
Vanessa Tavalero is in her sixth season with the California rowing program. She served as a volunteer assistant coach her first year on the staff before being elevated to her current role.View Vanessa Tavalero's Bio ⟩
Tavalero is a graduate and former rower at Washington, where she also was an assistant coach from 2010-11. She rowed on the Husky varsity eight boat beginning in her sophomore campaign.
Rowing as a senior in 2000, Tavalero led the Huskies to a second-place team finish at the NCAA Championships, also claiming second in the varsity eight grand final. That boat also won the 2000 Pac-10 Championship and was victorious at the Henley Regatta. The conference championship was the third of three straight Pac-10 titles for Tavalero and the Huskies in the varsity eight.
During her freshman season, Tavalero also won the Pac-10 championship in the freshman eight.
Tavalero's efforts at Washington helped the Huskies garner back-to-back team NCAA Championships in 1997 and 1998, her freshman and sophomore seasons.
Tavalero also served as an assistant coach at UC Davis (2009-10), the novice coach at Sacramento State (2007-09) and the novice coach for Capital Crew (2004-07).
Prior to attending Washington, Tavalero was a member of the U.S. Junior National team from 1994-95.
A native of Fair Oaks, Calif., Tavalero graduated from Washington in 2000 with a degree in metals and jewelry.
High Performance Camp: July 28th-31st
Check-In: Sunday at 3:00 PM at T. Gary Rogers Boathouse
Check-Out: Wednesday at 11AM at T. Gary Rogers Boathouse
Daily Camp Hours: SUN 2PM-7:30PM, MON-TUES 9AM-5PM, WED 9AM-11AM
Racing Camp: July 31st-3th
Check-In: Wednesday at 3:00 PM at T. Gary Rogers Boathouse
Check-Out: Saturday at 11:00 AM at T. Gary Rogers Boathouse
Daily Camp Hours: WED 2PM-7:30PM, THURS-FRI 9AM-5PM, SAT 9AM-11AM
Both camps will focus on sweep rowing.
Please click on "More Important Camp Details" for specific information about each camp.
High Performance Camp
Suggested skill level: 3-6, out of 10
This camp is ideal for experienced rowers with at least one racing season completed who would like to take their rowing to the next level and experience what it is like to row at an elite Division I university. This camp is specifically designed to cover the breadth of rowing with a focus on skill development. There will be in-depth lectures and discussions of the rowing stroke, training regimens, and racing tactics. Coxswains will be given individual feedback and the opportunity to review recordings of their calls.
Suggested skill level: 5-10, out of 10
This advanced camp is designed for rowers with 1-2 racing seasons. Athletes will get a first hand look at what it is like to train and race at the Division I level. Camp will have a high level of intensity, rowing instruction, conditioning work, and lectures with a racing focus, including seat racing, race strategy, starts, sprinting and erg testing. Coxswains will be given individual feedback and the opportunity to review recordings of their calls.
Housing & Roommates
If you have a roommate request and have not already given it to us, please do so as soon as possible. Roommate requests are not guaranteed, if you don't have a roommate request, you will be placed in a room with someone near your age.
Linens: Not provided
Room Key Deposit: No
Suggested Spending Money: $30
The staff live in the dormitories with the campers and participate in evening activities. Drugs, alcohol, and tobacco are strictly prohibited, and constitute, along with general misconduct, grounds for dismissal from camp without a refund.
Due to University and NCAA Policies, we are not allowed to offer any transportation to and from camps. The airport closest to the Berkeley campus is Oakland International Airport; San Francisco International Airport is also within a reasonable distance. There are several options that we suggest. There are a few shuttle services that offer transportation to and from Oakland & San Francisco International Airports. Reservations must be made at least a few days in advance, you can make reservations over the phone or online (see below).
Phone: 1-877-467-1800 (Local, Bay Area) 1-415-467-1800 (Long Distance, Outside Bay Area)
All campers commuting from the airport should be dropped off at the Boathouse with their belongings. They will be transported to their dorm rooms on the UC Berkeley campus after the first training session.
US Sports Camps does not provide hotel accommodations for campers or parents. If traveling from out of town, we recommend the following hotels:
- Hotel Durant (Please call 510-845-8981 to reserve your room)
- Hotel Shattuck Plaza (Please call 510-845-7300 to reserve your room)
- Holiday Inn Express & Suites Berkeley (Please call 510-548-1700 to reserve your room)
- Double Tree by Hilton Berkeley Marina (Please call 510-548-7920 to reserve your room)
- Berkeley City Club (Please call 510-848-7800 to reserve your room)
A detailed camper registration packet containing check in location, health/release forms, emergency contact numbers, and a checklist of things to bring will be emailed to all registered campers in the spring. The US Sports Camps health and release forms do not require a doctor's signature and they will be collected on the first day of camp. Campers must bring their health and release forms with them to check-in on the first day of camp.
We cannot offer scholarships due to NCAA regulations. Our affiliation with NCAA coaches and schools puts us in a position where any scholarship money can be seen as an inducement to a future collegiate athlete. This puts our coaches and our host universities in jeopardy of damaging their status with the NCAA and incurring penalties at the hands of their organizing body.
If five or more campers register together, each camper is eligible for a $20 discount. If 10 or more campers register together, each camper is eligible for a $40 discount. Teams can register online or via mail/fax.
To register your team online: Please have a team contact reach out directly to the USSC office at 1-800-645-3226 to receive a discount code to identify your group. Campers may then register individually through the website at their convenience and apply the coupon code during check-out.
*Please note, this information is subject to change.
*This Camp is open to any and all entrants.
Sample Daily Schedule
- 7:00 AM Breakfast
- 8:00 AM Depart for first workout
- 11:30 AM Return from workout
- 11:30 AM - 1:30 PM Lunch
- 2:00 PM Depart for second workout, lecture, row
- 5:30 PM Return from workout
- 5:30 PM - 7:00 PM Dinner
- 9:00 PM Evening activities with counselors
- 10:00 PM Lights out
The T. Gary Rogers Rowing Center, the Bears home since 1924 and steeped in over 94 years of tradition, is a virtual Olympic museum. In fact, the Boathouse is believed to be home to more Olympic gold medalists than any other facility in the world. No fewer than 27 Olympic gold and nine World Championship gold medals have been won by Cal oarsmen who trained at the T. Gary Rogers Rowing Center.
Located at 2999 Glascock Street in Oakland, the T. Gary Rogers Rowing Center lies between the Park Street and Fruitvale Avenue bridges.
Camp ReviewsSubmit a review
August 3, 2017: This camp helped my daughter in so many ways. The coaching and critique were terrific and having the exposure to college athletes was so positive.
— Maureen C. Parent
Loved the counselors
August 3, 2017: I had an amazing time at camp! I love all of the new skills that I am now able to bring back home and share with my club!! I loved the counselors, they were very encouraging and knowledgable! I will definitely be going back next year and I can't wait!
— Ella S. Camper
August 25, 2017: It was an amazing experience to row with Cal rowers and to be coached by their coaches. Just training next to them pushed me to work harder.
— Skylar N. Camper
Can't wait to go back!
My daughter raved about camp and is so excited to go back next summer...she wants to know if she can do more than one camp! She talks about the connections she made the coaches and the camaraderie she felt at camp. Can't wait to go back!
— Nicole K. Parent
I loved being around and meeting so many new rowers!
I loved being around and meeting so many new rowers! The girls were all wonderful, and I loved being around so many people that loved that same sport that I do
— Shannon G.. Camper
I cannot wait to apply what I've learned!
I cannot wait to apply what I've learned at camp to the water this season at NBRC!
— Brianna L. Camper
I learned so much from watching myself on tape.
Camp was great. I learend so much from Coach Sarah and the staff and it was so cool getting out on the water in the Cal Varsity boats. The video was also really cool, and I learned so much from watching myself on tape. The coaches did a great job of pointing out where I can improve. I can't wait till next year!