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Coach Barrow opts for specialised approach in 2014

National rowing coach Roger Barrow has adopted an alternative approach to our elite athletes’ training this season, writes Mark Etheridge.

The rowing code, in the shape of the lightweight men’s fours, produced one of South Africa’s three gold medals at the 2012 Olympics in London.

A number of the elite rowers were in attendance at the Commonwealth Queen’s Baton Relay’s tour of Gauteng and Tshwane this week, after their regular Roodeplaat Dam workout in the morning.

Speaking of the new approach Barrow said: “The crews are looking on fire, more like athletes, but we still have not make any specific crews yet.

“We will be in a camp in March and we have taken a different approach this pre-season as we’re trying to specialise the training of the athletes and seeing how we can improve each athletes and then put the best together.

“We plan to go to Italy early April to see where we are at and how the preseason has helped us. We’re keeping this year pretty simple and maintaining the focus on the basics of training with limited travel (funding also helps this!).”

However, there is still international competition on the schedule for the High Performance Centre (Pretoria) based squad.

“We will go to Henley in the UK and then Lucerne, Switzerland in July before coming home to Tzaneen for pre-Worlds training camp.

“We should know where we are properly in April, when we’ll know whether the crews are on fire or not.”


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