Julia Lindsay


Year of Birth 1997

Hometown North Vancouver, British Columbia

Nationality Canadian

College St Cross College

Undergrad/Graduate Masters

Year 1st

What are you studying? Psychiatry

What is the most interesting part of your course? Do you have any professional or academic plans after? I’m in a preliminary research phase at the moment, but I am really looking forward to starting to work with patients. My research project is about understanding the patient experience with a particular treatment in a clinical trial. I am considering pursuing a degree in Clinical Psychology or a DPhil once I have finished my Masters.

Future ambitions? I hope that during my career I can make concrete improvements in people’s lives. I would also love to own a jetski.

How do you balance rowing and academic life? Putting everything into my calendar really helps me, otherwise I tend to forget tasks. Although rowing is a considerable time commitment, I find rowing makes me more focused and productive in the time I do have for my academic work.

When did you start rowing, and why? I started rowing in 2011 because I wanted to be an athlete but wasn’t coordinated enough for any other sport (and also hated running at the time). My cousin Martin had recently started rowing and I thought it seemed cool so I tried out for my high school team. Ten years later we’re both trialling at Oxford at the same time which is really exciting for our family!

What was your first club? Crofton House School Rowing, which was such a great introduction to rowing. I am always grateful to my high school coach, Cinda Ewton, who created an environment that was exactly the right blend of serious and fun.

What is your favourite part of rowing for Oxford? The history of the Boat Race is unparalleled in this sport. From my first day in Oxford, I passed a window display about rowing at a shop on the High Street and realised this town was different from anywhere I had lived before. Seeing the rivers dotted with crews and flanked by boathouses is a daily reminder that I’m lucky to part of the history of rowing in this town. Just as importantly, the athletes, coaches and staff at OUWBC are incredibly kind.

What’s your rowing history, and what has been your biggest achievement so far? I’ve been rowing for ten years: five in secondary school and five during my undergraduate degree. My biggest achievement has been winning Head of the Charles, the largest regatta in the world, with my undergraduate team, the University of British Colmubia.

Have you raced in the Boat Race before? No.

Your favourite race so far? Head of the Charles 2019 Collegiate Ltwt 4+. It’s such a fun regatta because it’s like one giant reunion with every rower you’ve ever met. We won in 2019 which made it even sweeter.

Do you have any race day habits or superstitions? I used to have a lot of them but over the years I’d forget to wear my lucky socks or run out of my pre-race food and have to resort to something else… So eventually I just gave up and now I go with the flow.

Your sporting idol? That guy who set the world record for time spent planking. Eight hours and 15 minutes, I believe. I can’t do anything for that long except sleep.

If you could have any sportsperson in your crew, who would it be? Hillary Janssens, 2018 world champion in the women’s pair. She was on my undergraduate team and I’ve always looked up to her because she’s incredibly tough and dedicated to training.

What gets you through a tough session? Do you have a mantra, rituals? Disconnecting from it a little helps me. I tell myself that I can’t feel my body and instead think about the event I’m preparing for, which has been the Boat Race this year.

Any hobbies, other interests outside rowing? Knitting, yoga, road biking and film photography.

How do you motivate yourself and your teammates, especially with Covid restrictions? Working out together over Zoom has been really helpful. I feel much more motivated during tough sessions when I can see everyone else also sweating away in their bedrooms and back gardens.