DRAGON BOAT RACING

by - April 03, 2012


In October (last year) I signed up for "I Always Wanted to Try That" activity.  The "That" was Dragon Boat Racing.

Okay, let me just say that in reality I hadn't ALWAYS wanted to participate in a Dragon Boat Race.  In reality, I only learned about it a few months earlier. BUT, when you I see a sign up sheet that says:  "Here's Your Chance...to Participate in a Dragon Boat Race", all of a sudden that is exactly what you've I've always wanted to do.

I read the fine print very carefully.  The fine print said no experience required AND all fitness levels accepted. And bonus, the fees associated with the race go directly to a pretty cool charity.

So, in my "I can do this" delusion optimism, I signed up for the race.


We arrived at the lake at 8:00 in the morning. (Mighty early for me on a weekend).   But we were greeted to a beautiful morning sun on the lake.  It almost made it worth getting up so early.

There were three heats for the day. While it felt like you were competing with the other boat on the water, you were actually competing against the clock.  --Of course, if the other boat reached the finished line first, they beat you on the clock as well.  But because there were three heats the time was  combined to determine the winner.

My boat was made up of newbies (like me) and fill ins. I felt like we were sort of the hodge podge group.  I was not at all sure that we should have been "competing". Maybe we were there for the morale boost it gave whichever other boat was paddling beside us.

We assembled on the pier to learn a) where we were to sit in the boat AND b) what we were supposed to do once we were in the boat.  We had a different coach for the second race than we did on the first.  {You see? Hodge Podge}
The first coach was visibly surprised that there was an entire team of first timers! He must not have gotten the memo. 

The coach gave us a quick run down on the vocabulary so that we would know how to respond to the directions.  Things like:  "Steady the Boat"-Paddles in the water to 'steady the boat'. "Paddles up" means hold your paddle straight up (out of the water) and get ready to plunge it in when the next command is given.  

My plan? was simply to do what everyone else did when everyone else did it.  Oh, and try not to be intimidated by the team doing all of the fancy warm ups while we have our vocabulary lesson.
Turns out, the key to success is to be in synch with the other paddlers.  There are 20 paddlers (10 on each side). One nano second off and you I was locking paddles with the person in front of me or knocking the paddle of the person behind me.  Can you imagine how awful that is? It's like you are the only person that can't clap in time with the music. Embarrassing. 

But, if you decide to give it a go, I finally found the real secret. It's not all 20 paddles entering the water at the same time. Rather, it's 20 paddles reacting like dominoes. My paddle goes in AFTER the one in front of me. I'm not in time with her, but JUST after. I think I could get the hang of this if I decide to do this again.

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32 comments

  1. Hello Kimberly, in response to your comment: I too haven't read Harry Potter or Twilight. But I did love the first book now I am awaiting my library to tell me when I can pick up the second book.
    I would give this book a try if I was you. Not because they are popular but because they are captivating. They are nothing like I have ever read and loved them.

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  2. This post made me smile, Kimberly... Too funny! Sounds like it was a fun time though :)

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    1. It was fun. I actually think that if I joined the Dragon Boat club (just 30 min away) & I practiced that I might REALLY enjoy it.

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  3. This sounds so fun. I laughed at the warm ups. I'm stopping by from Live Laugh Rowe

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    1. I'm so glad we got pics of the warm ups. No kidding...it was very intimidating. I was like: "What about that 'no experience' thing?

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  4. Good for you for trying this! It looks like a ton a fun! :) {I'm stopping over from Live Laugh Rowe}

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    1. Hi Jess, Thanks for stopping over. It was fun. And thank you for the "good for me"...it really did take courage. I've never been athletic, so I'm definitely experimenting with putting myself out for new experiences.

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  5. Hopping on over from Live.Laugh.Rowe. You sound just lovely and I wish we could just sit and chat about life and the irony of it all. I blog at www.feelLOVDeveryday.blogspot.com and am almost to my 1-year anniversary in starting to blog. I haven't opened up my Etsy shop yet, but that's a whole 'nother story. A fact about me? I used to be a rocket scientist. A lot of things "don't take a rocket scientist to figure out" but we're prepared in case something does.

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    1. Thanks for stopping by. Just visited your blog & enjoyed it. And how cool is it that I now know a rocket scientist. :)

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  6. Saying HI from Live, Laugh, Rowe. That paddling looks really fun!!!

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    1. I'm glad you stopped by. It was fun. I may want to do it again.

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  7. Love the pics and your willingness to try this! I'm afraid they might have thrown me in the water!
    Visiting you via Live,Laugh,Rowe! I blog over at Stuff I Tell My Sister. Mine is a very random blog about every day "stuff". I'd love for you to visit! Do you have a fb page? Paula @ www.facebook.com/sisterstuff . ♥ Great to meet you, Kimberly~

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    1. Thx for stopping by. I just checked out your blog & enjoyed it. :) I love "every day stuff". FB is something I have not yet connected to the blog. So much to do...that is on my list. :)

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  8. Hey Kimberly! I am stopping by from LIve, Laugh, Rowe and I am glad I did! One random fact- I highly dislike working out, but I am working past that & training for a 5k run. I blog at http://mylifeasmindy.blogspot.com/ and I am your newest follower! I will swing by again!

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    1. Hi Mindy, I'm so glad you stopped by. I'm very impressed that you are training for a 5K. I too hate working out. :) But know I need to get my body back "in shape". Good for you for the 5K training!

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  9. First of all....I love that you signed up for a Dragon Boat Race!! How fun is that??!! I found you over at Kelly's Live, Laugh Rowe blog. (Isn't she the nicest?) My blog is mostly about crafting and my love for it. Sometimes I'll put up a recipe or something a little more personal. (http://wwww.silohillfarm.blogspot.com) I do live on a farm, but here is my dark secret....in the fall, my farm becomes Haunted Corn Maze. And since you like to volunteer......maybe you want to come be a haunter this fall??!! Seriously, it's loads of fun, but if anyone ever told me 30 years ago I'd be doing this....I would have laughed my head off! Gotta grab life when you can! Nice to meet you!

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    1. Hi Danni, Thanks for stopping by. Life on a farm...a real big one too! I had to go check it out. Gotta tell ya, I don't do well with "haunted" anything. I would be the worst volunteer. All I could really do is sit at the top of the hill with cider or hot chocolate to comfort those that were too scared to go in. :)

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  10. Hey Kimberly! Came by from live laugh rowe! Kelly's great, right?! How fun would dragon boat racing be!! I would love to try that! My step brother lives in Seattle, I've never been but it sounds so beautiful! Its nice to meet you, and I look forward to more of your adventures!

    Jill
    Https://iknowtheplansihave4you.blogspot.com

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    1. What a delight to meet you too. I just spent some lovely time at your blog. too. You are quite creative.

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  11. I forgot my random fact! I was going to college for nursing but I have a not so secret phobia of sick people! Before I had children I would say that I didn't want kids cause they puke, now I have 3 and they really do!

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  12. I stopped by to say hello from Life Laugh Rowe and I tell 'ya... I learn something new every day - like I never heard of dragon boat racing. Now if I get that question in Trivial Pursuit I will know!

    A random fact... when I'm asked to do something on someone's blog I do! Like leave a random fact or stop and say hi.

    ~Bliss~

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  13. That sounds like so much fun! I've always wanted to try it, too, but it just never worked out. You're inspiring me!!

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    1. I'm so glad you stopped by. I'm so glad I did it. I really want to do it again...but I want to be better.

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  14. Greetings! Thanks SO much for following my blog! It made made my day! I'm hoping you'll find something you'll like there! Have a great Easter! :) Sophie

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    1. Hi Sophie, I couldn't resist your blog. :) So glad to follow it and to see you here too.

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  15. This sounds (and looks) like so much fun! I don't think I've seen anything even remotely similar here! Do you think you'll do it again next year?

    x Jasmine

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    1. I'd like to do it again. But I think I should actually join a team and practice regularly for it to be more fun.

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