Learn from a Swede: Johan Flodin, 2013 Coach of the Year

The cover of the Swedish rowing magazine, October 1991: in their boat Joyride, Johan Flodin, in the stroke seat, with Bo Ekros, Per Lundberg and Joachim Brischewski, the Swedish crew who took silver medals at the World Championships in 1991 and 1992.

I was happy to read that a countryman of mine, the Swede Johan Flodin (pronounced: Yohan Flu-deen, stress on the second syllable in his last name) has been named the 2013 World Rowing Coach of the Year by FISA. Although a Swede, Johan received the award as the coach for the Norwegian men’s double sculls (Nils Jakob Hoff and Kjetil Borch) and the lightweight men’s double sculls (Kristoffer Brun and Are Strandli), two crews who became world champions at Chungju in South Korea earlier this year.

Johan was a very successful rower in Sweden back in the day. He has several Swedish championships under his belt and in both 1991 and 1992 he, Bo Ekros, Per Lundberg and Joachim Brischewski took silver at the world championships in the lightweight quadruple scull. In 1992, they also took the Queen Mother Challenge Cup – the first Swedes to ever take a cup at the Henley Royal Regatta (Swedish crews have competed at Henley before, of course, some of them reaching the final, but never won; maybe the most famous crew being Three Towns RC, who lost the Grand to Centre Sportif des Forces de Armee, France, in 1956). Johan was also racing in the Swedish quadruple scull who placed sixth at the 1996 Olympic Games in Atlanta. Although, Johan has never had a full-time paid position as a coach before taking on the Norwegian National Team in November last year, he coached Frida Svensson for several years which gained her the world title in the single sculls in 2010.

While an active rower in Sweden, Johan rowed for Strömstads RK, a rowing club in the small town of Strömstad on the Swedish west coast, close to the Norwegian boarder. Later, in Strömstad, Johan was the head master for a high school/junior college, which had a special rowing programme for high-level rowing juniors, many of whom have represented Sweden at international regattas like the Junior World Championships, etc.

Read what World Rowing wrote about Johan, who gave a talk at the World Rowing Coaches Conference in Tallinn, Estonia, the other day, here.

Below is an interview that Martin Cross did with Johan at the end of the World Championships in Chungju:

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