Making Waves: Checking in with BLJ Community Rowing

Leanne Yenush

Back in January, we announced our partnership with BLJ Community Rowing, the first and only Black-owned and operated rowing organization in the US. BLJ Community Rowing in Philadelphia has the mission of making the sport of rowing more accessible by removing boundaries and creating opportunities for anyone in the community -- all you have to do is show up.          

As the owner, founder, and head coach of BLJ Community Rowing, Brannon Johnson puts her heart and soul into serving her local community, and demonstrates every day how rowing can be a powerful vehicle for change.

Brannon's dedication is an inspiration to us all — so in March, we partnered with fellow Philadelphia native and Hydrow Creative Director Kevin Hart to surprise BLJ Community Rowing in person with two new custom Hudson boats

Check out Kevin Hart surprising Brannon: 

At an in-person celebration, Brannon and the BLJ team christened the two boats with champagne and announced their names: “The Johnson,” named for Brannon’s parents, the reason she started rowing, and “Vivre Noir,” French for “To Live Black”. These boats will be instrumental in getting new rowers on the water, expanding opportunities for more people to experience the awesome community and connection of rowing.

“This is absolute proof that if you consistently work, stay the course, and hold on with everything inside of you, dreams really do come true.” - Brannon Johnson 

Be sure to check out a special workout with Aquil and Brannon in the brand new BLJ boats. Look for it in the on-demand library: 10-min Breathe “Friends of BLJ Row”

We can’t wait to share more about BLJ Community Rowing with the Hydrow community as our partnership continues to grow!  

--  For more information and to donate to BLJ Community Rowing, click here.