What is a dragon boat?

Our dragon boat is 48 feet long boat from head to tail and weighs about 650 pounds.  It is 4 feet wide at the middle and narrows down to 8 inches at the bow and stern. During races and festivals, the colorful dragon head and tail are attached.

How many people are in a dragon boat?

There are 22 – 20 paddlers; 10 rows of 2 per seat, a steersperson in the back and a drummer in the front.

What time of year is dragon boat paddling held?

The paddling season in Maryland runs from April through October. [Check the club website for specific practice dates.]

Where are team practices held?

We paddle on Spa Creek in Eastport and meet at South Annapolis Yacht Centre (formerly Sarles Marina) in Eastport.  The address is:

808 Boucher Ave
Annapolis, Md. 21403

What does the club supply?

Paddle, life vest and the dragon boat (we may even have spare seat pads & water bottles)

As well as self-confidence, camaraderie, motivation, instruction, and coaching.  Paddling a dragon boat is a cost-effective way to increase mental focus and physical fitness.

What do I do if I want to try paddling?

Visit the contact information at the bottom of this page or send an email to; Membership@AnnapolisDragonBoat.org.  Guests practice on Tuesdays. Arrive at 5:45pm where we will fit you with a vest, paddle, and ask you to sign a waiver.  A member of our coaching staff assists you with a short training demonstration.  You can paddle three times as our guest, free of charge.  We invite you to join the club for additional paddling.

How do I join the club and pay my membership fee?

Go to our “Membership” link, print the application and waiver forms, and mail them to the designated Membership Chairperson, as indicated.

Payment may be made online with a credit card or by mailing a personal check with your application.

Do I need to bring a Personal Floatation Device (PFD) and paddle to practice?

No.  The club provides them both.  However, if you have them, you may bring your own.

How long are practices?

Most practices are approximately 1 to 1.5 hrs. long.  There is some minimal time before paddling to do a warm-up and time after for stretching.

Do you switch sides when you paddle or stay on one side all the time?

We typically don’t change positions when we are out on the water, but we recommend that you do paddle on both sides of the boat.

What do I wear to practice?
  • We recommend comfortable quick-dry shorts or pants, any length
  • T-shirt or fitness top; for cooler temperatures, a quick-dry additional layer (with long sleeves, you will need to push up 1 sleeve on the arm “outside” the boat.) Whatever you wear will get wet from splashes.
  • Water shoes, crocs, or flip-flops.
What do I bring to practice?
  • Seat cushion (ex: kayak seat cushion, piece of cushy rubber carpet padding, garden pad)
  • Water bottle
  • Sun screen & sunglasses
  • A change of clothes, just in case – you can get wet during the practice.
Can I join the club if I don’t want to go to a race or festival?

Yes.  You can join and attend practices without going to any races.  However, you may soon change your mind!

How long is a dragon boat race?

A standard race is 500 meters in distance and can take 2 to 3min., depending on the paddlers.  Some festivals include races of 200-250 meters and “guts and glory” races of 2000 meters!

Are there any men’s teams or only women’s teams?

There are men’s teams, women’s teams, mixed (men & women) teams, and Breast Cancer Survivor (BCS) teams.  A full boat in any category requires 20 seats to be filled.

How do I find out about the breast cancer survivor team?

Information is on the club website. Contact us; we will share information by email or phone, making a personal contact if you would like.  Start with an email and go from there.

What are the jobs on a Dragon Boat?

A Dragon Boat carries 22 paddlers on 10 rows of bench seats (2 people per bench). A drummer at the front and the steer person at the rear guide and control the boat. The first 3 rows are called the stroke seats. The final 3 rows are the jets. The middle 4 rows are called the engine room. The whole boat keys off the front right paddler.