Bring a Friend Day
On Sunday 5th March we held an Open Day when we invited everyone to come along and have a go and experience Dragon Boating.
Conditions were unpleasantly cold, wet and windy as the regular members launched and dressed the boats in preparation for the arrival of the guests.
First, all visitors completed necessary paperwork in the gym. With formalities done, Coach James Blake welcomed all and gave an outline of how the session would proceed. He gave a brief explanation of paddling techniques stating that the emphasis today would be on timing. He demonstrated correct fitting of a buoyancy aid and then described the safety procedures in the unlikely event of a capsize.
By the time we were ready to move outside the rain had stopped and the sky was brightening.
Fiona (Fee Fee) Joyce distributed buoyancy aids and paddles to the guests, then club Captain Mark Roberts lead the warm up before dividing the group into two equal sets of experienced/inexperienced paddlers and settling each group of twenty into their boats. With the numbers of visitors and members, we were able to use two 20-man boats, making it even more fun.
The water session started with a few minutes of steady rate paddling as the beginners very quickly found their technique and rhythm. This was followed by a couple of 200m and 500m pieces and then an element of competition was introduced as the front eight paddled together and compared their time with that achieved when only the back half of the boat paddled.
Owing to the previous days’ rain, the river level and flow rate had been rising throughout the morning and when the environment agency issued a red strong stream warning the session had to be cut short.
After a warm down the group moved back into the gym where the energetic ones had an opportunity to try out an ergo, while the rest of the group had bacon or fish finger butties with tea or coffee.
And finally, our drummer Dan who has graduated to become a paddler in the GB Junior Squad was presented with a birthday cake and the traditional song on reaching the ripe old age of 12years.
Congratulations Dan on both counts.
Thanks to everyone for helping with the day. We do hope everyone had fun and we will see you again!
If you have missed on the day, simply contact us on firstname.lastname@example.org to have a go.