The Hague, Netherlands, January 3, 2019 – Edouard Rowlandson is enjoying life back on the FIVB Beach Volleyball World Tour, but he knows that if he ever needs a break he has the perfect place to go.
The Frenchman is working his way back onto the World Tour after more than two years away from competing. He stepped away from playing from June 2016 to September 2018, but following his return he is currently playing alongside his long-time partner Youssef Krou at the 4-Star Dela Beach Open in The Hague.
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During his time away he and his wife moved to Les Deux Alpes in the French Alps where they opened a business, welcomed their first child, a daughter named Eden and enjoyed the life in the mountains.
“I had a two year break and didn’t think about when I was coming back,” Rowlandson said. “I went and lived in the mountains and opened a coffee shop with my wife. When you open a new business it involves a lot so you don’t really know when you’re going to stop.
“The experience was very interesting and new to me, having a job and getting up to go to work, but I’ve always been in love with the mountains and skiing.”
Rowlandson and Krou played together from 2014 to 2016. Their best finish came at the 2014 Xiamen Open in China, and they also won bronze at three other Open tournaments.
The 30-year-old returned to action in September 2018 when he and Olivier Barthelemy won gold at the Montpellier 1-Star. He then paired up with Krou and the pair featured in three tournaments before the end of 2018.
With the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games on the horizon and Paris 2024 coming soon after, Rowlandson now splits his time between his home in the mountains and the French Federation’s training base in Toulouse.
“I didn’t touch a ball for a year and a half,” Rowlandson said. “For a year and a half, the most was three days just for training. Coming back, I didn’t lose a lot in my body condition so I kept going to the gym and working out so I didn’t start from a very low condition.
“In February 2018 I decided I wanted to come back and come back and go as hard as possible and finish what I started with Youssef. When Youssef and I ended we knew we hadn’t finished what we were capable of doing, it was almost the start of building our team. It is important to focus on goals and visions and we see Tokyo 2020 and Paris 2024 as our vision.”
The tournament runs from January 2-6 and is being played on indoor beach courts at the Sportcampus Zuiderpark. It is the second year in a row that The Hague has hosted a tournament at this time of year and it has proved popular among the players who are able to compete at a top-level tournament when they would normally be involved in warm weather training.