Rowing is the chief discipline in the sport and encompasses many sub categories. The main sport of rowing is divided into two styles called Sculling and Sweep.
In sculling, the body movement is symmetrical (the body travels in a linear direction in the centre of the boat) and the sculler holds the handle of a sculling blade in each hand. – Sculling originated as a means of travel with the participant standing upright in the stern of the boat with the oar locked in a rowlock in the middle of the transom. The oar was ‘stirred’ in a figure of eight pattern to achieve propulsion
In sweep, the body movement is asymmetrical (the body moves to one side of the boat) and is counter balanced by a partner. The oarsperson has a single blade attached to a single handle which is held with both hands. Sweep rowing dates back to the Romans, Ancient Greeks and Ancient Egyptians and attained its pinnacle with the Romans developing the quinquereme, a battleship with five decks of oars on each side.