Rowing Ireland are delighted to announce that the successful coaching pathway will run again in 2022-23. This pathway is an excellent opportunity for female coaches looking to develop their leadership and coaching skills, empower themselves with a network of like minded coaches from across the sport and from other sports in a supportive and structured environment.

Pictured: Janet Walsh, New Ross Boat Club (Programme graduate 2020/21) at the Junior World Championships this summer.

What is the Women’s Coaching Pathway?

The Women’s Coaching Pathway is an exciting collaborative programme between Athletics Ireland, Cycling Ireland, Irish Athletic Boxing Association (IABA), Rowing Ireland and Triathlon Ireland. The programme gives females the opportunity to improve their knowledge, expand their network and develop leadership and coaching skills in a supported, collaborative environment. 

The programme launched in 2020 and over the last two years 55 female coaches from Athletics, Rowing, Triathlon, Cycling and Boxing have received support in personal and professional development, mentorship, coach education and co-coaching experience. The programme has been successful in progressing coaches along the pathway and participants reported increased confidence, understanding of their coaching style and feeling part of a support network.

Whats involved?

  • Personal Development Coaching Workshops with Jo Hopkins Consulting
  • Access to Coach Education
  • A trained Mentor
  • Multi sport networking opportunities in person
  • Support from their respective NGB’s Women in Sport Officers.

What does the programme cover?

  • Leadership Dynamics
  • Team Dynamics
  • Authentic Leadership Under Pressure
  • Leading Change
  • My Personal Resilience 
  • Building My Network
  • Coaching Skills 

What does the programme cost? 

The programme is being fully funded through Sport Ireland Women In Sport programme. The value of the programme is around 750 Euro per coach and includes on-line material, mentor support, face to face workshops, virtual sessions, networking opportunities and further development post course through continued group support.

Who are we looking for?

  • Ideal candidates have a desire to learn and improve in their coaching setting. They can collaborate with others and help the whole group to grow and succeed whatever their goals may be. We want coaches who are hungry for knowledge, a passion for sharing experiences and a desire to progress themselves, their sport and their athletes.  Six coaches per sport will be selected.

How to apply

Complete the virtual application form HERE by 21st of August 2022. You will be notified by 26th of August regarding your application.

Conditions of Application

Coaches should:

  • Be over 18 years of age
  • Be a member of their Governing Body (Rowing Ireland)
  • Attend all workshops (on-line and in person)
  • Actively engage in the coach development opportunities throughout the programme
  • Actively engage with mentoring and active learning sets as part of the coaching process
  • Implement their learnings within their club
  • Proactively seek advice and support from the network, Women in Sport lead and stay in contact with them throughout the programme.

Workshop and On-Line Key Dates 

Workshop 1 (in person)     24th September     9:30am – 4:30pm Dublin, Venue TBC

All virtual session below are Wednesday evenings from  6:30-8:30pm

12th October Virtual session 

16th November Virtual Session

14th December Virtual Session

18th January Virtual Session

15th February Virtual Session

Workshop 2 (in person)         4th March    9:30am – 4:30pm Dublin, Venue TBC

Programme Leads

AthleticsLilly Ann O’
RowingCeara O

On Saturday 23rd of April, our Year 1 and Year 2 female coaches from the HP Coaching Pathway met in Dublin for the first time since the programme began. With the restrictions of Covid-19, this has been the first chance for all the coaches to gather together in person. From 10am- 4pm the Year 2 coaches had their final workshop session with Jo Hopkins in a series of workshops aimed at giving them the leadership skills they need to move forward on their coaching journey.

The coaches met with other coaches from Triathlon Ireland, Cycling Ireland, Athletics Ireland and Boxing Ireland.  Lochlann Walsh (OFI Gender Commission Chair) greeted and chatted with coaches. Nora Stapleton (Women in Sport lead, Sport Ireland) also addressed all coaches.

In the evening, the Year 1 coaches joined us and all coaches enjoyed socialising over a dinner and guest speaker Stephen Maguire (Head of High Performance, Sport Ireland) spoke in conversation with Jo Hopkins reflecting on some experiences of his athletics coaching career which were significant learnings for the coaches. A Q&A was also held with Stephen.

Many thanks to Stephen for his time and to Jo Hopkins and Eliza Downey for facilitating. Claire Lambe was a key figure in organising this event. Applications for next year’s programme will begin this summer. 

Rowing Ireland is delighted to introduce the Women in Sport Leadership Programme to our sport. This is a fantastic opportunity for females working in leadership roles (or hoping to progress to a leadership role) within Rowing Ireland clubs and regions e.g. committee members, officials etc. Clubs should also consider past members that may be interested in being involved in their clubs again in a club administration/leadership capacity. 

This programme will be delivered through a series of online interactive sessions that will develop candidates to thrive within their specific role. Several NGB’s are participating in this programme, providing a diverse mix of perspectives and knowledge to draw from.

A combination of group and individual exercises will be included, ensuring that everyone is supported in reaching their own potential. Course content will be delivered by Leadership Experts and Consultants Lisa Clancy and Sarah O’Shea as well as guest speakers who will share their personal leadership experiences.

Course Details

  • January 5th – February 23rd 2021
  • 8 week online course
  • Tuesdays 7pm – 8.30pm
  • Open to: committee members, officials and anyone working within the club/regional environment. (Whilst not advised for busy coaches – welcome to apply)

Core topics

  • Leadership and Values
  • Networking and Collaboration
  • Handling Challenging Situations and Developing Resilience
  • Crisis Management and Influencing in leadership
  • Developing Your Personal Brand
  • Wellbeing
  • Change Management

Candidates will come from a mixture of sporting backgrounds across Ireland. All applications will be considered and up to three candidates from Rowing Ireland will be chosen. 

Application Form: Please download below and return by email to

Application closing date: Monday, December 14th at 5pm

WIS Leadership Programme Flyer – please share within your club!


Our sponsors and partners