Ellen Keane has not had the easiest of preparations for this year’s ParaSwimming World Championship in Portugal but was still in irrepressible form when talking to media earlier this week.

She was being unveiled as an ambassador alongside Kellie Harrington for Dublin City Council’s new campaign to promote the benefits of sport and physical activity across the city.

That she was doing so over zoom was partly explained by the fact she is currently in isolation having tested positive for Covid.

“I’m just mostly trying to recover because there isn’t enough research done about the impacts of Covid on athletes and the impact it could have on sporting performance,” she told us.

“Having a World Championships in two weeks is not ideal at all but it’s the world that we live in at the moment.”

Having been so careful and managing not to contract it in the run-up to Tokyo last year was I guess the most important thing. The only way to really avoid it is to not go outside, which isn’t realistic and isn’t something that you should be doing even for your own mental health.”

When I was competing on Dancing with the Stars it was all over the place but luckily I didn’t catch it then either.”

“Anyway it is what it is and at least I didn’t catch it in Tokyo, that was my biggest fear. It’s just one of those things I have to accept now.”

“I know how to prepare,” she said looking ahead to the World Championships where she will compete alongside fellow Paralympians Nicole Turner, Barry McClements and Roisin Ni Riain as well as Amy Sheridan.

“My routine and my race practice are pretty solid and I guess this year as well, being a post-Olympic and Paralympic year, the pressure is off in terms of every athlete having their ebbs and flows and definitely post Games, a lot of people tend to dip a little bit.”

At least she has Denny her dog for company in isolation and he was also keen to make himself heard during her media duties.

“It’s great to have Dublin City Council bringing us both together for this and to give Paralympic Sport equal billing with the Olympics.” The team does a lot of great work around inclusion and I’m looking forward to doing what I can to highlight the great facilities we have around the city.”



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