Category Archives: DBWA News

Auroras – Premiers & Seniors – results from China

5 Gold               19 Silver                  11 Bronze

The 13th IDBF World Nations Dragon Boat Championships Kunming, China 18th – 22nd October 2017 saw best ever performances for all divisions.

Auroras Head Coach, Serghei Cucsa was very pleased with the outcome given the number of countries entered and the high standard of the competition.

Divisional Coaches Christopher Alexandrou, Martin Pavelka, Christopher Cheung, Maggie Boyce expressed their thanks for being allowed to work with Australia’s elite Dragon Boat athletes.

“The postponement of the 13th World Nations Dragon Boat Championships meant that athletes had an additional 3 months of training. Their focus, control and determination over this period allowed them to gain a high level of improvement both on and off the water since their selection camps. The overall results demonstrate the level of improvements since the Canada campaign. It was pleasing to see that several of the Premier paddlers who competed as U24s in Divonne-Les-Bain in July were able to use this experience to assist the Premiers in their amazing achievements”

The Premiers, Senior A, B, C paddlers were able to demonstrate in Kunming, China that they are the Future + the Heart & Soul of Australian Dragon Boating. They were able to grow on the ongoing spirit and passion of the AusDBF Auroras by showing that they do have One Heart, One Soul, One Team, and One Goal because they are Australia.

Divisional Results as follows:

Premiers 2 Bronze
Senior A 9 Silver 2 Bronze
Senior B 5 Gold 3 Silver 3 Bronze
Senior C 7 Silver 4 Bronze

State Team FAQs

Do you have concerns about trying out for the State Team? If so, read on!

Let’s address a few of those potential worries:

I don’t think I’m a good enough paddler to be on the State Team.

This is not uncommon. Many paddlers underestimate their own abilities and have self-doubts, even at the highest level of competition.  However, these concerns are often exaggerated because it is very difficult for an individual to assess how well they paddle.  Unlike other team sports, one cannot count the number of goals they made, or how many times they blocked a shot, or how fast they ran compared to everyone else. Chances are you are a better paddler than you realise. So give it a go and try out!  If nothing else, you are likely to learn more about paddling and have a great time making new friends.

I’d like to try out, but I’m FIFO / going on a long holiday / I’ll miss a training camp, etc.

You should still give it a go and try out.  Unless you are going to miss every training camp, or be on holiday for most of the season, this shouldn’t prohibit you from trying out and potentially being on the State Team.  This especially applies to reasonably fit and experienced paddlers, who tend to pick up their technique and fitness quickly after being on a break. Give it a go — try out anyway!  If you are selected for the team, there are options available to help you be ready when it comes time to race at the Nationals. Just give it a go.

I’m not sure if I can commit to the dates for the Nationals — I won’t know until my leave gets approved (or some other reason) and that won’t be until after the EOI closes

No one can ‘guarantee’ that they will be available for the Nationals, as unexpected things do happen, such as injuries, new jobs, cash flow issues and a host of other reasons.  The question is whether you have best intentions of going to the Nationals — if you intend to do what you can to attend, and you are as committed as you can be in your own personal circumstances, then that is all that is asked of you. The most important thing is to communicate with the coaches so that if your circumstances do change, they can make crew adjustments.

I think I can paddle well enough, but the idea of doing a beep test and/or lifting weights freaks me out!  I’m nervous about applying because I’m worried about the benchmarking tests.

Many people feel uncomfortable and concerned about the benchmarking tests the first time they are asked to do them. It’s a normal reaction, because it is outside of one’s comfort zone. You know how to paddle… so why are you being asked to do push ups?!  Don’t worry!  The push ups and other exercises are just so the coaches can get an idea of where everyone is at with their fitness.  The coaches know it is only the start of the season and recognise that people may have been on winter break, or have no experience in the exercises.  It’s totally okay!  We all have to start somewhere, and the benchmarking gives the coaches the information to help them build and develop the team.  So relax — people will help and encourage you during the exercises and it’s actually more fun (yes, fun!) than you would expect it to be.

State Team – Expressions of Interest – now closes 18 Nov 17

Note: New closing date for EOI – 18 November!

DBWA is now accepting Expressions of Interest (EOIs) for the State Team.  The selected crews will compete at the 2018 Australian Dragon Boat Championships (Lake Kawana, Sunshine Coast QLD, 3-8 March 2018).  At a minimum, DBWA is very keen to put forward Junior, Premier and Senior A crews, but the preference is to be able to enter teams in all age categories.  It is hoped that paddlers will encourage each other to submit an EOI to try out for the team.

EOIs are to be submitted before 18 November 2017 by going to the Jotform link below and completing the required questionnaire. Paddlers who are currently on the Australian Nationals team (Auroras) must still submit an EOI, but do not need to do the initial bench marking.

Remember, you cannot fail these tests!  They are simply benchmarks; the coaches will be looking for you to improve on your tests each time you do them.  So there is no need to be afraid — everyone is very supportive of one another and the coaches will help you through the testing process.  If you have any concerns about the testing (e.g. have bad knees or injury), please , DBWA Coaching Director, to discuss.

Paddlers should note the slight decrease to the weights for the upright row.  It has been decided to decrease the weight in the hope of allowing people to achieve higher numbers within the 2 minutes.  The 10kg will be used in preference to the 20kg bar, as people are likely to have more access to the lighter-weight bar.

Please read the following information and watch the videos to understand the technique to be used for the tests.

1. Upright row with bounce (Not Strict) – in 2 mins

The start of the video shows approximate width of hands; they should be just inside your hip width. There are two ways of doing the move. The first three moves uses a single bounce with stopping between each one. The last few seconds of the video shows a double bounce, with no stopping between the repetitions.

The main things to remember are:

  • Keep your hands close to your body throughout the move.
  • Keep your elbows above (higher) than the weight.
  • Don’t go any lower than the point where you have straight arms/body – your hands do not go past your knees.
  • This is more of a leg exercise than an arm exercise (see below).

The arms control the move, but it is the leg drive which allows the weight to be lifted up to the level of the arm pit. If you do not go to straight arms at the bottom, or bring the weight up to your armpit with your elbows high, that rep will not count.

2. Push ups

You can use this clip to practise the 3 sec cadence that will be used on testing day.  Remember, it is full push ups on your toe and making sure your elbows bend to create a right angle (i.e. no partial push ups). On the day, to help ensure this, you will partner up with another paddler, who will then put their fist on the ground at your sternum position.  The push up will involve lowering yourself so that your sternum touches their fist time (i.e. one touch per push up). If you do not do the correct technique, you will get a warning.  If one’s technique is lost for a second time, then that will be the count for the maximum number of repetitions.

3. Sit ups – in 2 mins

For this you are looking to ensure your shoulder blades touch the ground each time, and your elbows touch the top half of your legs each time. If you do not do full technique that sit up will not count. See the video below for the correct hand position for junior and senior women, and for men, as they are all different.

4. Beep test – to end of level stated

The distance is 20m on hard ground (e.g. pavement) or 19m on grass.  The beep test requires one to run in a straight line, then rapidly change direction, once they get to the line. One has to touch the line before the beep to be counted.  You cannot start running again until the next beep, so it helps to practice your timing. If you miss the line once, you will get a warning.  If you miss touching the very next line, that will be recorded as your level.  NOTE: if you have bad knees, please get a doctor’s note and liaise with , DBWA Coaching Director, to discuss and arrange for alternate testing (e.g. ergo testing) to be done. .

It may help reading up on techniques that can help with your beep test performance.  Turning on the line is a skill, and it helps to practice it.

5. Plank – 3 mins

The plank is to be done on elbows and toes, with the body straight between shoulders and heels.  If your bottom raises, you will be warned.  On the second warning you will be considered out and your time will be recorded.  Likewise, once any part of your body drops to the floor (e.g. knee, chest) that will be marked as your time.

First Aid/CPR Courses – for current and aspiring sweeps and coaches

It is an AusDBF requirement for all coaches and sweeps to have and retain first aid accreditation.  The required course is nationally accredited and is known as ‘Provide First Aid’.
DBWA intends to run the Provide First Aid course in November 2017 and May 2018.  The exact dates will be confirmed when final arrangements are made with the presenter.
These courses are to intended to assist coaches and sweeps in that capacity and are available ONLY to current coaches and sweeps and to those individuals who have demonstrated commitment to becoming a coach or sweep (e.g. have been selected for the coaching course, or are actively pursuing sweep accreditation).
Please forward any questions about the course or eligibility to Laura Hughes,.

Congratulations, Cockburn ladies!

Congratulations to the Cockburn ladies crew who competed at the 2017 Australian Championships in Albury-Wodonga!

Due to various factors, this small crew of paddlers were the only participants representing WA at the Nationals this year.   Vivienne Wigg was also honoured as the WA flag bearer for the event.

The ladies did a great job. They competed as Senior A paddlers, despite being a crew made up of mostly Senior C and Senior B members, and made it not only to the semi-finals in both their 200m and 500m events, but finished 7th out of 17 teams in the 200m x 10s boat event!  Great work, ladies!  Congratulations!

The ladies team consisted of:

  • Barbara Harris
  • Bernie Constable
  • Carlie Byrne
  • Cherie Cobban
  • Chris Martin
  • Hermie Bourchier
  • Lyn Paul
  • Lynne Kostanic
  • Maggie Marshall
  • Ruth Dennis
  • Sharon Corsbie
  • Vivienne Wigg (also WA flag bearer)

Indian Ocean crew to compete in Hong Kong

Best of luck to the Indian Ocean Dragon Boat Club (IOD), which is sending a crew to Hong Kong to compete at the Hong Kong International Dragon Boat Races!  The competition will be held in the Hong Kong harbour on 2-4 June 2017 and is expected to be an exciting event with plenty of Chinese dragon boat tradition and fanfare. (Photo:

In order to maximise their crews and ability to race in multiple events, IOD put forth an EOI for paddlers from other clubs to join them and several paddlers took up the offer.  Members of the Cockburn Blades and The Lakers will be competing with IOD in Hong Kong.  Best of luck IOD crew and may you bring home some bling!

The crew members and races are as follows:

Indian Ocean Dragon Boat Club

Brian Marsden Craig Palmer Frank Sumich Geoff Burgess Gordon Waycott
Hannah Parker Hubert Hiemstra Jason Swiney Jenna Coghill Jesse Cai
Jodie Boulton Julian Freeman Julie Houghton Karen Irvine Kelly Munro
Matt Bowman Mike Rammer Osvaldo Celenza Peter Irvine Phil Moferdin
Richard Parker Ryan Allen Sandy Burgess Sarah-Jane Knowles Sue Martin

*Plus Team Managers Terry and Teresa Parker

Cockburn Blades Dragon Boat Club

Bernie Constable Carlie Byrne Kristin Priest Sharon Corsbie Simon Williams Tim Byrne

The Lakers

 Daniel Foucar

Categories entered

200m 10s racing

  • 2 x mixed 10s teams
  • 2 x open 10s teams
  • 1 x womens 10s

500m 20s racing

  • 1 x open 20s
  • 1 x mixed 20s
  • 1 x fancy dress

State Championships – 19 March 2017 – Day 2 results

Congratulations to all clubs who competed in the 2017 State Championships.  The racing was excellent, with some extremely close and exciting finishes (see photos at the bottom of this page).

The medals standing was as follows:

1,000 m races

  • Youth
    • 1st – Fremantle Cygnets
  • Women
    • 1st – Lakers
    • 2nd – Amazons
  • Mixed
    • 1st – Indian Ocean
    • 2nd – Cockburn Blades
    • 3rd – Forza

500 m races (10s)

  • Womens 10s
    • 1st – Perth Pirates
    • 2nd – Cockburn Blades
    • 3rd – TIED – Forza and Lakers
  • Mixed 10s
    • 1st – Lakers
    • 2nd – Cockburn
    • 3rd – Forza
  • Open 10s
    • 1st – Lakers
    • 2nd – Indian Ocean
    • 3rd – Forza
  • Youth 10s
    • 1st – Lakers Youth
    • 2nd – Fremantle Cygnets – Team 1
    • 3rd – Fremantle Cygnets – Team 2
  • Womens 20s
    • 1st – Lakers
    • 2nd – Cockburn
    • 3rd – Fremantle
  • Mixed 20s
    • 1st – Cockburn Blades
    • 2nd – Lakers
    • 3rd – Indian Ocean
  • Open 20s
    • 1st – Lakers
    • 2nd – Indian Ocean
  • Youth 20s
    • 1st – Lakers Youth
    • 2nd – Fremantle Cygnets
Team Gold Silver Bronze Total
Lakers 5 1 1  6
Cockburn 1 4  5
Indian Ocean 1 2 1  4
Fremantle Cygnets 1 2 1  4
Forza 4  4
Lakers Youth 2  2
Perth Pirates 1  1
Fremantle Swan 1  1
Amazons 1  1


The race times for the heats are available here:

Photos of some of the great finishes of the day are below.  Note that the finishing tower photos tend to ‘stretch’ the boats and have a level of distortion that is necessary to distinguish the order in which boats crossed the line.  The best way to view these photos is to see how much of the dragon’s nose, head or neck is in front of the following boat and you will quickly realise how close these races were!

Closest finish of the day: Race 25 – Lakers Youth (1st) and Fremantle Cygnets (2nd) who were separated by 0.040 of a second!






Race 3 – Mixed 10s x 500m, heat 1





Race 7 – Mixed 10s x 500m, heat 2




Race 19 – Mixed 20s x 500m, heat 2