I had seen photos of a friend dragon boating and thought it looked very fun and a bit different, 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! I have enjoyed every minute of paddling with the team whether it is our weekly Saturday paddle with beers on the beach catching up with everyone afterwards, or going to Korea or some other equally as exotic place to win medals.
I feel honoured to be the Team Captain of a great and diverse group of people that like to have fun but want to win medals and train hard!
I’m looking forward to another great year living up to our motto: Party Hard, Paddle Harder!
July 2012 marked the beginning on a long and tumultuous journey that has landed my face on this webpage. It was about 8 months after my arrival into Singapore when I decided to take my Saturday afternoons a little bit further afield than Boomerang at Robertson Quay. Enter: The British Dragons. It was time to swap pints for paddles and get in a boat! I’m glad that I did decide to come back to Kallang after that first Saturday afternoon shock to the system that our coaches likes to call a ‘10 minute warm up to the Bridge’. Man was I sore the next day! But I was hooked. Throw in some fantastic races in Singapore and elsewhere in Asia, as well as a great social fabric and a team of dedicated, enthused and truly awesome people, I’m still here. Now years later I admit that the ‘pints for paddles’ swap didn’t go as planned, but I’m really stoked to be part of the British Dragons. (even though I cop it big time for being an Aussie).
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..
Even though people call me JB, my actual name is not Johor Bahru.
When I arrived in Singapore in February 2015, I wanted to find a way to combine outdoor activity, team working, sport, challenge and making new friends.
After 3 minutes of googling such activity, I came to try a session with the British Dragons and I have got addicted to it!
The team is very welcoming to any nationality and it makes sure that everybody is having a great time of sport and fun on the water.
I moved to Singapore in August 2007 lived around the Kallang River and spotted the Dragon Boats out on the water. I have always enjoyed team sports, so I tried paddling, and I loved the sport, and as importantly the British Team. I was hooked. The diversity in the team is remarkable – ethnicity, age range and indeed fitness levels. (for some this is their first sport) . It’s a really great full body work out, but foremostly for me it’s an opportunity to really push yourself and enjoy the exhilaration of great team work. We work hard in the water and there is also a great social aspect. Team players welcome always at the British Team!
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.
Moving to Singapore in 2012 was a huge deal for me. Being somewhat of a home bird, I was petrified about moving to the other side of the world, away from my friends and family in the UK. I thought I’d spend a solitary year working hard (day job: Podiatrist), swimming every day, reading… It hasn’t quite worked out that way!
Dan (Team Captain) convinced me to try paddling after we met at one of those social meet up events. 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, Jess.
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.
I moved to Singapore in Jan 2013 and regret that it took me a year to find dragon boating! I was enticed to give dragon boating a try by the motto ‘party hard, paddle harder’ and that it involved being out on the water (albeit the Kallang) and joined the team in Jan 2014. Dragon boating is great in that you can choose whether to be more of a social paddler or someone who wants to commit to the team and training to race both in Singapore and internationally, so don’t be put off by the amount of training per week initially, you could get hooked! I did get hooked and have now joined the committee as International Rep which means I’m responsible for organizing our international races to exotic locations like Korea, Hong Kong and Malaysia (where to next?) and coordinating with the other expat teams
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 January 2013 and since then my weekends have been filled with lots of paddling and taking part in my dragon boating events around Singapore.
If I’m not paddling during weekends you can find me either diving or playing tennis.