British Rowing aim to double indoor rowing in five years

With a goal to double participation in indoor rowing in the next five years, British Rowing was delighted with the wide range of sector experts attending the first British Rowing Indoor Rowing Forum.

Representatives included leisure operators, equipment manufacturers, event organisers, charities and digital experts, along with organisations such as the CSP Network, Youth Sport Trust, BUCs and Sport England at the London event.
British Rowing took the opportunity to launch its new indoor rowing strategy, ‘Go Row Indoor’, which will see the sport’s National Governing Body bringing together industry partners, addressing barriers to participation and growth, and providing a collective voice and profile for the sport of indoor rowing that hasn’t previously existed.
Outlining the goals of the British Rowing Indoor Rowing Forum, Helen Rowbotham, director of innovation at British Rowing and chair of the day, said: “This is a superb opportunity to bring industry partners together, share research and insight, discuss and get feedback on new campaigns, products and innovations, while also informing the sector of the direction of British Rowing’s indoor rowing activities.
“We want to create a collective voice for the sport, bringing together partners who can address the current barriers to participation, such as lack of knowledge and perception of indoor rowing.

“We are taking a collaborative approach with the sector, creating pathways supported by industry training, coaching, guidance, research, product development and events. Ultimately we hope to further open up the sport of rowing and broaden its appeal to include the mass consumer fitness market.”
Current plans for the launch of Go Row Indoor in 2017 include new class models for gym and studio, the appointment of Master Trainers, instructor training programmes, the development of online leagues, software partnerships, national and regional events and a consumer awareness campaign. Along with a platform for British Rowing to present the strategy and plans to increase participation, the Forum also provided delegates with ample opportunity for feedback and discussion.
Rowbotham added: “There are nine million gym members in the UK, the majority walk past a rowing machine on a regular basis. If we can sell the benefits of indoor rowing to just a small percentage of this marketplace, and create an offer that appeals to them, we believe we can double the number of indoor rowers in the next five years – and create a generation of indoor rowers that feel connected to our sport.”
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