In the UK, its close to 1 year since the COVID-19 pandemic took hold of the country and halted the rowing community.
For many, training schedules were altered to adjust to the new, 'training from home' lifestyle. This meant begging for or borrowing club ergs, weights, spin bikes and anything else you could get your hands on. Like everyone else, we had to adjust quickly however the communication to our athletes was simple. Keep training and keep eyes on the prize. We think that it is important for people to stay motivated, regimented and connected despite the change in training and lack of contact and this worked well for the remainder of the 2019/2020 season, despite no regattas and lack of crew boat rowing.
Heinz site is a great thing. Would we have changed the way we approached the remainder of the 2019/2020 season? Absolutely not. For the athletes that kept training and improving their craft were, in fact, investing into their future selves whether they knew it or not. Fast track to the 2020/2021 season and we are now half way through already. In the UK, racing has been almost none existent and training has not been the same since the pandemic started. There has been sporadic periods of time in which crews have been able to get onto the water but there is very much a looming question of 'will there be a regatta season or not?'.
Whether there is or not, we retain our stance, keep up the work, keep investing. Eventually, you will thank your former self once races return and performances count. We are lucky in that every athlete we write plans for and work with in person, continue to train throughout the lockdown and even continue to improve.
Our advice is, for those that are struggling, change up your training and focus on a short term goal. This goal does not need to correlate perfectly to your usual training but be sure in some form, it will still have a positive impact when you return to the water. Perhaps try to improve your 5km run time or a 60 min max watts session on the spin bike. Stay connected to your squad and coach. Whether you have a WhatsApp group or partake in zoom sessions together, you are all in it together.
We are all looking forward to a return to racing and every day that goes by is one day closer. Don't waste this time now, perhaps invest in yourself or your squad and try out one of our training programmes? We'd love to hear from you and your experiences of training during lockdown. Use our forum page to give us your best (or worst) lockdown sessions!