Practice review for Wed May 26 – dragon boat

Hi everybody,
Good practice last night – lots of improvements all around.
We are working on strength and endurance training now – so I am pushing the team more.  Less work on technique but more on finesse.
Lots of individual compliments all around. People are refining their technique and their timing.  This team is really coming around…  I swear it is the best performing Gung Haggis team I have seen.  You can really feel the surge of the boat, when we all pull at the same time. 
The next step is to sustain that surge for 66 strokes per minute for 2 minutes and 20 seconds… that is only 165 strokes over 500 metres.  We can do 165 good strokes or we can do 200 poor strokes in 2 3/4 minutes to cover the same distance.
Much of the same emphasis continues… Sit up straighter so you can rotate more effectively.  If you hunch over and forward, then you compress your diaphram – leaving you with less lung capacity.  Also you then are off your centre of gravity and are more likely to injure your back.
So… sit up straighter – visualize the pole or light, running from the sky, through your body and down through your tailbone into the centre of the earth.  Rotate on its axis.  Very simple.
Remember to exit at your knee… a few people are coming back to their thighs – the longer stroke means you have less time to recover.  Get in early and get out early – this is how sprinting works.
For your exit…  Use your thumbs to push the paddle away from the boat rather than lift the paddle up.  This reduces the repetitive arm strain of lifting your paddle above the water – by swinging (or feathering) the paddle outwards, the paddle can keep a lower profile.  Your Top Arm should not move more than 6 inches throughout the entire stroke.
For this coming Sunday…  May 30
We meet at 12 noon.  Dragon Zone at Science World.
Dr. Sun Yat Sen Gardens… tour and Tai Chi lesson.  This is a Gung Haggis team tradition.  We get to explore the gardens and park, while learning about chinese philosophies such as harmony and balance.  We see how this works combining the human body with movement in Tai Chi demonstrations.  Then we integrate into our afternoon dragon boat practice.
I will propose Sunday May 30, June 6 or June 13.  We can meet at 10:00am and have the tour and lesson for 1 1/2 hour then have Chinese lunch in Chinatown before practice.  This might work better on June 13 as on June 6 we have regatta and being outside from 10 to 4pm might be a bit long…  But on June 6th – we can also use it for team bonding prior to racing that afternoon… and hopefully more people can commit to both garden tour, tai chi and race regatta on one day.
Cheers, Todd

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