Dragons hit the water

SUNDAY marked the first paddle for Sale’s newest sporting club, the Gippsland Water Dragons.

Dragon boating began in Australia about 20 years ago, when a Canadian physiotherapist promoted it as the ideal rehabilitation exercise for people recovering from breast cancer.

Ten years ago, the Gippsland Waratahs dragon boat club was formed as a partnership between Sale and Bairnsdale to support local breast cancer survivors.

Many Sale residents would be familiar with the sight of a dragon boat making its way around Lake Guthridge or along the Sale Canal.

However, dragon boating is increasing in popularity across the world and Sale’s paddlers wanted a club with wider appeal – and created a new club. The new club is hoping to attract new members and welcomes everyone.

Currently the club has male and female members whose ages range from 16 to “somewhere in the 70s”.

Dragon boating is an easy sport to take up, with new paddlers able to begin at any level of fitness.

Club activities range from twice weekly training, social events both on and off the water, up to competing at regattas.

Current members have participated in state and national championships, the Masters Games and international events.

For people who do not want to compete, the club offers the chance to exercise with a fun, supportive group in a beautiful environment.

For people interested in trying dragon boating, the club is offering one month’s free membership, which includes use of all equipment and coaching from qualified coaches.

The club has an approved COVID-safe plan in place for all activities.

For more information visit the club at the Port of Sale or email gippslandwaterdragons@gmail.com

The club usually trains Saturdays from 10am and Tuesdays from 5.30pm, but this can be changed to suit weather conditions.