The sport of Dragon Boat has taught you many lessons that you can apply in real life. Teamwork and camaraderie for example, are just two of a number of life principles that you may have picked up or developed from the sport. To make your dragon boating life more meaningful, you should embrace all the learnings from it, especially those that make you an expert about life.
Qualities like mental toughness, being a team player, or having a winning mindset are just some of the takeaways you have acquired from dragon boat. Here’s a few compilation of some of the most inspiring words of wisdom by national athletes from around the world; and here’s hoping that you may embody these amazing qualities to help you and your team in stepping up your game, in sport, and, in life.
1. Leave your Ego by the Dock Site
“That one crucial part is for members to leave their ego at the door. You can have a team full of the best athletes in the world, but if they can’t check their egos and blend with humility, it’s a recipe for disaster.”
Christine Pezzulo, National Athlete – Team USA
2. Paddles Up! Persevere!
“Keep going, keep your head up, be proud! Always reach further, I was told I would never walk again! I could not, WOULD not accept that! You keep battling! Afghanistan was my war, now my injury is my war! Life is for living; live it to the max.”
Mark Harding, National Athlete – Great Britain Dragon Boat Team
3. Listen to the Beat of the Drum
“I always maintain a healthy respect for my paddlers of all levels, since I am often paddling in the boat with them too. I am aware that as a sole person I may not see or understand all things of all paddlers at all times. So I encourage healthy discussion and conversation from my paddlers. This two-way dialogue encourages respect and cohesion amongst the paddlers.”
Dennis Wright, National Athlete – Auroras – Australian Dragon Boat Team
4. Keep a Fit Mind and Body
“I think the key to success in sport is staying physically and mentally energetic by staying motivated and free from physical obstacles like injuries and illnesses.”
Carl Marco Wassén, National Athlete – Dragon Boat Team Sweden (Sverige)
5. Paddle with your Heart
“We play sports like dragon boat because we love doing it. The awards and medals are only a small part of it. Yes, you will strive to be the best but in so doing, loving and enjoying the sport is already an ultimate goal achieved.”
Nutcharat Chimbanrai, National Athlete – Thailand Dragon Boat Team
6. Practice builds Confidence
“Never give up and have a big goal and ambition. One needs to be very confident on training and during competition. The most important thing is to keep training and practice a lot.”
Wu Chun-Chieh, National Athlete – Chinese-Taipei Dragon Boat Team
7. Motivated to Motivate
“One thing that keeps me going when I’m tired during a race or in training is the knowledge that my teammates around me are hurting just as much and that my opponents are pushing themselves even harder.”
Kiyoshi Morishita, National Athlete – Dragon Boat Team Canada
8. Synchronised for One Goal
“Unity is important especially in a team because without it you will not achieve your goal. For example, when our team is focused on a certain programme today, it requires everyone to be united in following and doing it; when others did not perform well, we need to do it again and again until we have perfected it.”
Riza Canonoy, National Athlete – Philippine National Dragon Boat Team
9. Celebrate Victory, but..
“The victories in the past give self-confidence of course and also the necessary composure for the upcoming challenges. However, one shouldn’t relax on the victories from the past; there will always be new aims, new opponents and therefore also new duties.”
Marc Rößler, National Athlete – Team Germany (Deutschland)
Photo Credits: Ed Nguyen Photography