WORLD No 1 masters swimmer Cindy Ong is conducting free online coaching and it has become a hit.
She came up with the idea when the government implemented the Movement Control Order (MCO) in the efforts to stop the spread of Covid-19.
Cindy, also a private swimming coach and personal trainer based in Mont Kiara, said she initially started the online sessions, which focus on at-home total body workouts, for her clients.
However, it has since grown in popularity, and Cindy now does two sessions a day with up to 30 people per class.
“The idea started when the MCO was enforced.
“I felt really down when MCO started because I couldn’t use the pool and the gym,” said Cindy, who won five gold and two silver at the Gwangju World Masters Championships last year.
“I spoke to one of my friends who is based in Beijing.
“She had been under lockdown since earlier this year and she suggested that I do the sessions online, so I did.
“I use a free app called Zoom which is actually meant for business meetings (video conference) but can accommodate up to 100 people at one time.
“At first, it was just meant to be for my clients, but then when I posted it on my Facebook account, more and more people wanted to join including those from Indonesia and Australia.
“I focus on full-body workouts which you can do at home.
“At the moment, I separate my sessions according to their abilities.
“I can monitor up to nine people at one time on my screen.
“I keep the classes completely free to encourage people to remain active during MCO.”
Cindy is also looking to stream the sessions live on her Instagram account, so more people can benefit. Those who are interested may follow her at @cindy_ong_swimmer.
On a competitive note, Cindy, like many other elite athletes around the world, remains in the dark over competitions.
“Most competitions have been cancelled or postponed, so I am not sure yet what is left to compete in this year,” added Cindy.
“The Asian Masters Championships is supposed to be held this year but there is no news on that so far."
The Asian meet is scheduled on Aug 23-28 in Da Nang, Vietnam. Cindy had won seven gold at the Nagoya Asian Masters Championships in 2017.
She is the topped ranked swimmer in the world for the women’s 100m butterfly in the 35-39 age group.