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One Man One Dream. Keeping up with Kingsley Ijomah


14 Jul 2020 | Emma Benham

Kingsley Ijomah is a man on a mission, to achieve the dream he didn’t even know he had. Earlier this year Gravity 9 said goodbye to one of their top programmers as he left the business to dedicate himself to his training ahead of the 2020 Paralympics where he was due to represent Nigeria in the rowing regatta.  After accidentally discovering a love, and a natural affinity, for rowing back in 2012 Kingsley has gone on to compete for Team GB in the 2018 World Rowing Championships and, is currently waiting to hear on a potential world record(more about that in the coming weeks).

As proud supporters of Kingsley and his achievements Gravity 9 will be following his continued training, the challenges and the successes along the way, as he maintains his fitness levels and prepares for Tokyo 2021. Over the weeks we will chatting to Kingsley about all elements of his training and journey; from the technology that has become vital to his success to the mindfulness preparation and personal growth achieved through sport.

When the World Stopped

When the world ground to a halt back in March due to Covid-19, understandably, the Olympic and Paralympic Games were postponed for a year. Despite utter disappointment Kingsely is a man you can’t keep down. Dedicating himself to maintaining his Olympic fitness levels Kingsley has thrown himself into personal challenges, alongside his daily training regime!

Lockdown was a challenge in itself for Kingsley. After months of training to reach his Olympic fitness levels being unable to get out on the water or to training with his coach at the rowing club was as much a mental challenge as it was a physical one.

It took so long to achieve this fitness levels and be ready for the Paralympics, I was determined not to let that slip away. Despite rowing in a single scull, training is very much a team sport. I work with coaches and trainers who guide and support me on a daily basis. Not having them around, plus not being able to get out on the water was tough.”

The Challenge

However, Kingsley found focus and drive by working with his coaching team over Zoom and setting challenges which he could work towards in maintaining both physical and mental fitness.

“I was excited when the club suggested I row a marathon. I was confined to my home, with just my Concept2 rower, this challenge gave me an interim goal to work towards, so I threw myself into it.”

On (insert date) Kingsley set out on his marathon, overseen on Zoom by his coach and trainer. 3 hours and 34 minutes later Kingsley completed the distance, gliding over the finish line, 6 minutes ahead of the current world record, an accidental bonus to a personal challenge.

What’s Next?

While Kingsley waits for the verification of his achievement with the Guinness World Records and Concept2 he is already preparing for his next challenge later this month, a mere 100k which he is hoping to achieve in 8 hours.

“My drive to succeed and determination to reach each milestone along the way has allowed me to be in touching distance of a dream I didn’t even know I had. While I’m ready for Tokyo now, I know that by continuing my training and maintaining my focus on challenges along the way I’ll be even fitter and more prepared this time next year.”

Follow Kingsley’s journey to Tokyo 2021 with twice monthly updates on the Gravity 9 blog and social pages.