Career to date and the future of rowing in Ireland

Neville Maxwell

Neville Maxwell is a former professional and international rower.  He is currently a Director of Rowing Ireland and  the Chairman of the High Performance Committee. He competed at the 1996 Summer Olympics and the 2000 Summer Olympics and is a multiple world rowing championship medalist.

In this episode, we discuss Neville’s introduction to rowing, his professional career, experiences at the Olympics, thoughts on retirement and his current position as High Performance Chair and Director of Irish Rowing.


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0:55 Introducing Neville Maxwell and his major rowing accomplishments.

1:30 How Neville started off in the world of rowing.

3:34 How it is being involved in a minority sport in Ireland

4:40 About turning pro in rowing

6:58 How Neville worked with gold medalist Thor Nilsen

8:25 What made Thor want to become involved in the Irish rowing scene

9:52 The first experiences of the world championships

11:17 A typical week of training during the height of success

13:12 The dynamic in the boat

14:28 How they make sure everyone in the team is reliably healthy to compete

15:56 The lead up to the 1996 Atlanta Olympics

18:35 What it was like just missing out on a Coxless Four medal

19:42 Why they went out hard at the start of the race

21:05 Qualifying for the Sydney games

23:22 Being part of the golden era of rowing

24:43 The international power-houses of rowing

25:44 Memories of the Olympic villages

28:26 Mental training

32:19 How rowing styles have changed over the years

34:05 The influence of technology on the sport

35:15 Retirement from rowing

36:20 Adapting to regular life after pro rowing

38:45 On Cyclist Bradley Wiggins attempt to come out of retirement to try professional rowing

40:35 Parallels between high performance sports career and the professional work environment

42:58 High Performance chair for Rowing Ireland

44:59 Preparations for Tokyo 2020 with Antonio Maurogiovanni

46:57 The significance of the O’Donovan brothers in Irish Rowing

49:42 Implementation intentions and strategies for the High Performance team training in Ireland

51:21 The loss of Morten Espersen to Irish Rowing as high performance director

52:56 How things stand in general now for Irish rowing

54:41 The future weight category for the O’Donovan brothers

58:36 Athletes to look out for in the run up to the next games

1:00:52 Young people starting out in rowing today