The lack of water isn’t stopping a former Skibbereen rower coaching his Junior 12 crew

March 27th, 2020 11:48 AM

By Kieran McCarthy

Ross O'Donovan at home in his sitting room as he holds a remote coaching session with the Lee Valley Junior 12s which includes his daugther Roisin.

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THE lack of water isn’t stopping one former Skibbereen rower who now coaches juniors at Lee Valley Rowing Club.

Ross O’Donovan learned his trade at Skibbereen Rowing Club under the watchful eye of the legendary Dominic Casey, and it seems the latter’s work ethic has rubbed off on his former student. Even though the rowing season has been suspended until further notice, O’Donovan is keen to keep training his Lee Valley Junior 12 crew, including his own daughter Roisin, so they will be ready to rock once they get back on the water. Embracing video communication software such as Zoom, WhatsApp and Google Duo, it allows O’Donovan to coach remotely from the comfort of his own sitting room.

‘I started this to keep up the spirits of the kids and their families during these uncertain times. It gives a routine, some bit of normality and it’s important to get a break too from the wall-to-wall coverage of Covid-19,’ O’Donovan said.

‘We do erg training and circuit training four times a week, I can see them all so I’m able to comment on their technique and offer my advice.

‘It’s going well so far and I’m training up another coach this week so he can look after his crew and keep them active.’

O’Donovan knows that his crew will be back on the water at some stage but until then he’ll continue his remote coaching. Even Dominic Casey would nod his head in approval of this innovation.

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