Would you like to look good, be fit and become a world champion in a sport that’s fun and sexy? Yeah, you can be all that and more, if you join us as we bring Dragon Boating to the frontiers of Cebu and the islands of Visayas and Mindanao.
Dragon Boating is a fun sport where we Filipinos can excel in. In fact, not a lot of people know that the Philippines owns the world records for Dragon Boating’s 200-meter open category with a time of 40.02 seconds; and the 200-meter mixed category with a time of 43.50 seconds. The 200-meter open features 20 paddlers, a drummer and an oarsman. It is the showcase event in the Dragon Boat World Championship, just like the 100-meter men’s sprints is the premiere event in the Olympic Track and Field competition. The 200-meter mixed category, on the other hand, is composed of teams with 12 male and 8 female paddlers. And we are proud of the fact that our paddlers have consistently been among the top contenders in this sport; and this is due to the fact that, coming from an archipelagic country, it is just so natural for us Filipinos to paddle around in our bancas as we explore our vast seas.
In the first-ever IDBF Dragon Boat World Cup competition held in Fuzhou, China last June, the Philippines surprised the highly partisan crowd by clinching 2nd overall (behind China) despite coming in on the day of the races itself. Not given much of a chance with the many obstacles they had to overcome to be able to compete, our team shocked everyone by taking 2 of the 5 events being contested, and almost humiliating China for the overall championship trophy! Host country and heavy favorite, China, would clinch the overall crown, but the underdog Pinoys would catch the imagination of the crowd by fighting tooth-and-nail, and giving the Chinese team the fight of their lives.
Unlike basketball or other sport, Dragon Boating doesn’t need height or bulk in order to excel. What the sport needs is teamwork and synchronization; 20 paddlers under the baton of a seaborne conductor, rowing in unison, going towards one direction, with the same force and speed. Hence, it needs discipline, camaraderie, and sacrifice; so that the strength of all are harnessed into one single, powerful, yet graceful stroke.
This will be in full display toward the end of this year, as Cebu City will host a big dragon boat competition for the first time. This will be an exciting prospect for our young athletes who may wish to try a new adventure. Dragon boating will not only allow them to develop their bodies and minds, it will also open up avenues for travel and outside education. And as the sport grows, its contributions to the province’s youth development and tourism programs grow as well. Dragon Boating also offers opportunities for cleaning up the environment, building up a commercial base for paddlers, while promoting cultural development for Cebu and its neighboring areas.
So come and join the Dragon Boat Cebu Central Philippines, and be at the helm of the sports’ development in Cebu and in the region. Early registrants will be gifted with discounted membership rates, plus free 1-month training on the rudiments of dragon-boating. For individuals or groups in Cebu interested to try Dragon Boating, please email firstname.lastname@example.org or call Pons Alvarez at: 09335076139. See you soon!
(Pictures courtesy of the Philippine Dragon Boat Federation, racedragonboats.com, nocheckedbags.com, istartedsomething.com, hdwallcloud.com, chinesetimeschool.com, festival.si.edu, peterboroughdragonboatfestival.com whatsonxiamen.com, ifrasia.com, demotix.com)