When I was living in the UK, I had seen photos of a friend dragon boating in Asia and thought it looked like a lot of fun, so when I was relocated to Singapore in 2011 with my job and needed to find some friends, I found the British dragon boat team! The first thing I noticed was how friendly everyone was and it seemed like a great team to be a part of. Since that first time paddling, I have enjoyed every minute with the team, whether it is our weekend paddling sessions with beers on the beach on Saturday catching up with everyone, or going to international races with the team, we’ve been to South Korea, Malaysia, Shanghai and many more places, but ice dragon boating in Inner Mongolia was particularly memorable!
I became Team Captain in 2017 after having had a few other positions on the committee, I feel very honoured to be the Captain of a great and diverse group of people that train hard, but know how to have fun together too. We welcome everyone, and I would really recommend you come down and give it a try, you won’t look back! We are a team that live up to our motto: Party Hard, Paddle Harder!
I arrived in Singapore in 2011, drank beer at Boomerang for about 6 months and then decided I needed healthier weekends. Google took me to the Brits and I haven’t looked back! The Brits and Dragon Boating have taken me all over the Asia, including Korea, Hong Kong, China, Malaysia, Thailand and around the Kallang more times than I care to remember. The view from the river on a Saturday afternoon looking across the Singapore skyline is spectacular and certainly got sparked my interest in the beginning. The ongoing fitness challenges, the total racing addiction, including medals, and most importantly, the life-long friends I’ve made have meant that this is my 7th year in the boat! Onwards to more medals and memories!
Despite not knowing how to swim, I joined the team back in 2013 after I got bored of my weekends at the gym & joining night runs. Thankfully, personal floating devices were invented and it was a requirement to have it before hopping into the boat.
On my first day, I found myself sitting at the tail end of the boat and remember thinking that the entire session would be just an introduction to the team and a short casual run at the river. Thirty minutes later, I was doing sprint sets and fighting to stay alive. ‘Is this how newbies are welcomed?’ I asked myself.
Little did I know, the team was preparing for the Singapore River Regatta. Never have I imagined that it will be the start of my great paddling experience.
Being the Men’s Captain of this bunch of crazy but good people, I am thrilled to help the team in every way that I can — drinks included. I am excited to help people realize that this exhausting team sport can be very rewarding too.
So, if you are keen for a different kind of workout, something that involves sun, water, alcohol, BBQ and lots and lots of adrenaline rush, come down to Kallang and join us.
Unlike the rest of the outgoing personas listed here, I am born and bred in Singapore! What other ways for a coach to do, bring the expatriate paddlers out for local delicacies and educate them on the nuances and idiosyncratic ways of the Little Red Dot.
I have this little peeve with contact sports. That said, I still enjoy a good competitive team spirit and bonding. So in 2004 when choosing a sport curricular, Dragonboat became the glaring choice. That first trial with the school team proved my decision right.
Even then, I could never have imagined Dragonboat to propel me so far forward, more than a paddler. I am a confident steersperson, earning myself an accolade with the Team as one of the best. I am also a Technical Coach, with the British Dragonboat team and other similarly illustrious teams. And I am an International Race Official with the International Dragonboat Federation (IDBF), going around the world running world-championships with the IDBF Family. I help run Dragonboat Events for corporate team buildings both locally and overseas. Wheww.. What a list!?
The amount of friends and fellow sportsmen I met through Dragonboating is endless! I tried to count them for this write up but I gave up at 1,022 or thereabout. The sheer amount of new friends and connection through this enduring sport is truly amazing!
If you have yet to pop by Kallang for a session with the British Dragons, what are you waiting for?!
I won’t go easy on you just because you’re new, but I definitely will be keen to bring you round the island with fellow local paddlers, to the chomps and chows, afterall, an athlete needs his carbo-loading.
Off the boat, I am dressed up in my shirt and pants at work with a local financial firm. Or out with my trusty bike for a spin around East Coast Park. And oh yeah, eating, cannot miss that. It is Singaporeans favourite pastime afterall…. True story..
Hi! I’m Steve (or Koko to most of the team!) and I’m the Secretary / Social Media Guy of the team.
I joined the team in 2015 because I wanted to join a social team sport, and can certainly say that paddling with the British Dragons more than met any expectations I had! Simply put, joining the team is one the best choices I’ve made, and I’ve met fantastic people and experienced wonderful things along the way (both in or out of the boats)!
You really get back what you put into the team and more, so I encourage any newer paddlers to really throw themselves in at the deep end, and I assure you – you’ll like where you end up.
If you’re reading this maybe you are considering trying dragon boating? Or maybe you’ve already joined us for a few sessions and are thinking about signing up as a member?
I have three words for you – Go For It!
I joined the team in 2015 after being struck by how friendly & welcoming everyone was. Up until then I had only been living up to the first half of the Brits motto “Party Hard, Paddle Harder!”. Luckily for me, whatever your fitness level is when you join, the coaches & captains will build you up & encourage every step of the way. You’ll be winning medals in no time!
Joining the Brits was the best thing I’ve done in Singapore and I highly recommend it to anyone looking to get fit & have fun.
The previous Team Captain convinced me to try dragonboating after we met at a meet up group when I arrived in Singapore in 2012. I was really nervous turning up to training on that first Saturday afternoon, but the nerves didn’t last long. Everyone was SO friendly and welcoming, it was hard not to like! There’s a great mix of people on the team of all ages and backgrounds. We even have some Aussie’s – it’s not ideal but they’re good paddlers so I don’t complain too much 😉
Many, many training sessions and some incredible race weekends later; I am the proud owner of a collection of medals. And I’ve made some really great, life-long friends on the team. One of which is my fellow Social Secretary, Queen-of-Organised-Fun, Izzy.
The team is never far from my thoughts, seeing as my flat is home to the team kit. So if you’re looking to try something new, make new friends, and join the team.. don’t forget to get the t-shirt!
There is nothing else that combines the power, intensity and team work of dragon boat. I joined the Brits for the international mix, winning mentality and the fun lowing crew – and I haven’t looked back. To dragon boat is to live.
Give us a try.
I joined the team in May 2016, having been in Singapore for less than a week. Jumped into the back of a boat during 10k training; my poor, unsuspecting arms. Coming back was the best thing I’ve done. I couldn’t have asked to meet a better group of people. I can’t quite believe I’m on the committee after such a short time, but I guess it’s a testament to how welcoming and nurturing the team is. It’s wonderful to be part of such a vibrant and exciting team and I hope to do the team proud.