So, before rowing, I had tried swimming without much success. I wasn't sure if rowing would be any different, but when the offer came, I decided to give it a shot. The offer was made through Tuam Cancer Care where I happened to be part of an exercise class. I thought, if they're kind enough to offer a trial, why not take the opportunity?
Well, my main goal was to keep my word to myself and challenge myself to try something new. I knew I had to break it down into smaller steps to make it easier for myself. First, I researched where the rowing sessions took place, then I just had to show up, introduce myself, and give it a go. I was a little nervous, but I decided to trust the guidance of the experienced rowers. It’s obvious that they know what they are doing.
I have loved it! It's been an incredible journey. Of course, I don't get it right every time, but the supportive atmosphere makes all the difference. There's no pressure, and the more experienced rowers always reassure me that it's okay to make mistakes. The physical benefits have been great too. Rowing has improved my upper body strength and breathing, which actually helps with my golf game. It feels like it opens up your lungs and gives you a sense of freedom. It is good for building core muscle strength, coordination, and balance.
Rowing is such a soothing experience. When you're out on the water, all the chatter in your head seems to fade away. You become fully present, focusing only on the rowing and the water. Moreover, being part of a rowing club creates a wonderful connection with others. Meeting new people and spending time with fellow rowers is incredibly energising.
I would say, just go for it! Don't hesitate or sit on your thoughts. Give it a try, because you'll never know if you don't try. It's okay if you don't end up liking it; it's all part of the journey. But unless you try, you'll never discover the joy and fulfilment that Row to Recovery can bring.
Thank you to Sheila sharing her experience with us. Her journey in rowing is truly inspiring, and we hope it encourages others to step out of their comfort zones and try something new. As Sheila said ‘Don’t sit on a thought’ contact us today if you want to give it a try.
Rowing is a cerebral low impact sport that utilizes the whole body and is accessible to all, regardless of fitness level. While a certain level of fitness is helpful, full training is offered by certified coaches and absolute beginners are welcome. Nor is age a barrier, our members range from early forty to late sixty.
Regaining a level of fitness, learning the skill of rowing, training and being part of a rowing crew in a very supportive, non competitive, fun manner are just some of the many benefits cancer patients have found when they join our crew.