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In our sixth season,
the latest news June, July 2013
Paddlers for Life join the celebrations at Ambleside YHA Grand Opening 28th. July, 2013

Jane did a fantastic job organising the Paddlers for Life presence at the official opening of the Ambleside YHA following refurbishment.
Paddlers for Life , Windermere at Ambleside YHA grand opening.

Visitors to the YHA opening day enjoyed many activities including the chance to paddle a dragon boat with Paddlers for Life. Paddlers had eight outings during the day usually with six to eight members of the public joining the fun of paddling dragon boats, racing and even 'tug-of-war'!
The teamwork of Paddlers for Life ensured the public were given sound training and a super experience which they clearly enjoyed.

Thanks to everyone who paddled, gave safety briefings (Roz), helmed the dragon boats (Jane, Roz, John and Chris), provided support cover from the 'rib' (Steve and Bill) and liaised with the public to promote our activities (Sue, Rowena and Louisa).
It was a great day out for members of the public to meet Paddlers for Life, Windermere and a wonderful new start for YHA Ambleside.

21st July, 2013. Another glorious sunny day on Windermere.
There was a good turn out again on sunday as paddlers made the most of the weather.
There were enough paddlers today for two full crews in both boats.
This included some new paddlers and visitors trying out dragon boat paddling.

Paddlers for Life Windermere had a strong presence at Brockhole Visitor Centre Open Day
in a 'Meet the Dragon' day organised by Sue P-J on 14th. July, 2013.
It was a great team effort to enable members of the public to try their hand at dragon boat paddling.
More photos in the gallery.

Barbara and Fran were busy organising creative activities for younger children.
Sue P-J, Sue and Rowena managed a PfL stall organising paddlers with the various important bits of documentation as well as giving information about cancer survivor dragon boat paddling.
A great pool of helms, Peter, Helen, Roz, John, Chris and Elaine prepared themselves for a busy day while Steve and Nick crewed a safety boat for the day.
There was a wonderful turnout of paddlers ready to share their love of dragon boating with some novice paddlers in taster sessions.
All this enthusiasm and some gorgeous weather for paddling made for a brilliant day that showed Paddlers for Life at their best.
More photos below or in the gallery
Public Paddling Session 2 Public Paddling Session 3

30th. June, 2013 A day for visitors.

Following this year's theme of unsettled weather, several visitors turned up to paddle in dull conditions.
This meant we could get two boats out on Windermere to give the visitors some basic paddling techniques and then a 'baptism of fire' with two short races.
The afternoon session was soon curtailed as strong winds and gusts quickly came in and a
sensible decision to get the boat out of the water.

9th. June, 2013. Two fantastic coaching sessions with Keni.

Good conditions at last for a wonderful coaching session with Keni.
Paddlers worked on their stroke technique in the morning and worked on race starts and transitions for a short sprint race in the afternoon.

Peter, Helen and Chris helmed.
See the gallery for more photos.

June 9th. 2013, Eye Dotting Ceremony

It is traditional each year, on the fifth day of the fifth lunar month (usually June) for crews of paddlers to re-enact the frantic rush to save poet and courtier Qu Yuan, by powering long narrow boats with the ferocious heads of dragons mounted on the prow through the water, to the frenzied, rhythmic beating of drums. Part of this ceremony is to 'dot the eyes' of the dragons by painting in a pupil to the dragons' eyes. This traditionally re-awakens the dragons and allows them to release their powers to ward off evil spirits and protect the health and wellbeing of the dragon boat crew. Buckwheat was thrown on the water and 'hell money' burnt by paddlers as part of other traditions linked to the ceremony.
Sue and Keni were honoured to complete this task for Paddlers for Life, Windermere.

Red ribbons were attached to the boats to signify good fortune, smooth 'sailing', and blessings for the crew. Then the crews charged the boats towards the shore shouting "Awake. awake, awake."
See the gallery for more photos.

June 2nd. Paddling video clip,

June Dragon Boat Paddling Session 2013 from Paddlers forLife on Vimeo.

June 2nd, 2013 Paddling Session.

The wind was still with us so another interesting day of paddling for helms Aly, Helen and Tony.

They took us through some active paddling sessions which included coaching to improve the paddling stroke and some race practices over distances of around 250 metres.

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