Dragon Boats offer summer fitness

The KIDS team paddling in Kamloops. Photo supplied.

For those looking to stay fit once the snow melts, the answer may be found on the Thompson River in Kamloops, B.C.

Starting in April the Kamloops Interior Dragon Boat Club (KIDS) will take to the water three days a week to begin training, in addition to attending a number of festivals around the province.

KIDS president Reggie Black first joined as a runner to cross train. Six years later she said she stays for the camaraderie.

“The KIDS are very positive and fun and the coaches are very experienced,” she said. “This is a perfect cross training activity that strengthens your upper body, core and legs. It also helps with focusing and timing.”

Practices, held at Pioneer Park in Kamloops, include a warm up, dry-land training, paddling, drills and a stretch.

The members, who are all 55 or older, not only train at home but also hit the road to represent Kamloops in dragon boat festivals and will host a festival at home in August.
“We enjoy that we represent a city on the river. When we compete at other festivals outside Kamloops, like Vancouver, Nanaimo we are very proud that we can paddle with the best of them,” Black said.

She added that anyone who is curious about the sport is welcome to join a practice for free. Paddles and life jackets are supplied. The club will also host a “learn to dragon boat” program in May.

“If anyone has seen a dragon boat and thought that would be fun to do, come and give the water sport a try.”

For more information or to register visit kamloopsinteriordragons.ca.