Kootenay Rhythm Dragons want you

The Kootenay Rhythm Dragon Boat team invites you to try your hand at dragon boating.

Kootenay Rhythm Dragons practicing on Kootenay Lake.

Kootenay Rhythm Dragons practicing on Kootenay Lake.

The Kootenay Rhythm Dragon Boat team invites you to try your hand at dragon boating.

Whether you are interested in competing, or simply keeping fit and having fun, they invite you to join them. You don’t have to be abreast cancer survivor to be part of the team, you just need a desire to have fun and exercise. All ages and abilities are welcome.

A dragon boat team consists of 20 paddlers sitting two abreast, plus a steers person who steers the boat from the rear and a drummer who sits at the front and coaches the team.

The team of paddlers works in unison to propel the boat forwards from a standing start. Timing, strength and endurance are key elements of a successful team. The fourth and most critical is teamwork.

Dorothy Hatto, a long-time paddler and board member emphasizes the fun aspect of the team and the out-of-boat activities. “We meet every week, year-long for coffee,” she says.

When asked what she loves most about dragon boating, Hatto replied “All the nice people. It’s a very social sport and that’s what I like about it. All the friends I’ve made, friends forever.”

All Nelson women are encouraged to have a go at this exciting sport that epitomizes team spirit.

Jill Cowan, a breast cancer survivor, has been a member of the team since its inception in 2004.

“It was the camaraderie and knowing others had been through what I’d been through,” she says. “I love that competition is open to everyone, even if you’re going through chemo. Friends and survivors, paddling together.”

Paddling is scheduled several times a week and there are different groups for all interest levels. The season begins with dryland training in April, and paddling from May to September.

Come and learn the basics of rhythmic paddling and be part of a great team. For more information contact Dorothy Hatto at 250-551-3104.