Good practice on a sunny Mother's Day. Good weather – it has not rained on us yet! The only thing we could wish for better is to have more paddlers in the boat!
We started the practice stretching and talking about goal setting with Dave Montrose. Dave gave really good examples of how busy he was – and how he could reasonably spend energy on dragon boat paddling. He emphasized what he could do to help the team, and what he was willing to commit, and what his personal goals were.
We saw that Dragon Zone was hosting the False Creek Racing Canoe Club dragon boat regatta, and we watched both a race and a race start with four boats each.
12 paddlers worked hard on Sunday, refined their techniques for the push/pull drill, and the 5-5-5 drill. The really learned to use their whole paddle and to feel the resistance. We did some “ladder” drills – emphasizing the 5th stroke at 90%, as well we did 50%, 70% and 90% ten stroke ladder drills.
The latter half we focused on Race Starts and Race strategies with coach Bob Brinson. The team responded well, and Bob Brinson said the team had a real good jump on the first stroke. We practiced race starts in the the starting gates for the dragon boat regatta, and Bob simulated some race starts as Dave learned more about steering in race situations. Later we paddled the entire 400m regatta length emphasizing a strong start and strong finish.
Please remember to measure your own abilities. We have team members with a range of fitness and ability levels. We want to be able to push everybody, but not push people over their thresholds. At this point, we are now working on strength and endurance training phase – but we need to build this up gradually. If you need to take a break during a drill – please do so. Hopefully with improved strength and endurance training, you will need less and less breaks. Our goal is that you will not need any breaks during a race in 4 weeks time for the Alcan Dragon Boat regatta on June 6th, and certainly not for Festival weekend on June 19 & 20th.
Please remember to post your goals as a comment on the Goals page. Please do not post anything confidential or of a highly personal nature, as the web pages are accessible to anyone on the internet. I will look into setting up a member's section.