Dragon Boat World Athlete: Passion and Love Required

This Q&A was with Dragon Boat World Athlete, Wu Chun-Chieh, National Athlete – Chinese-Taipei Dragon Boat Team.

Dragon Boat World Athlete Wu Chun-Chieh


NAME: Jay/Wu, Chun-Chieh
BIRTHPLACE: Hualien,Taiwan
AGE: 27yo
HEIGHT: 171cm
WEIGHT: 74kg
STATUS: In a relationship

Asian Dragon Boat Championship 2010, China, 2 Silvers – Open, 500m, 200m
Asian Dragon Boat Championship 2012, Thailand, 2 Golds – Mixed, 2000m, 500m
ADBF Asian Dragon Boat Championships, Korea, 2 Golds – DB22 Mixed, 500m, 200m; 2 Silvers – DB12 Mixed, 500m, 200m
IDBF World Dragon Boat Championships 2013, Hungary, 2 Golds – DB12 Mixed, 500m, 200m; Bronze – DB12 Open, 200m
East Asian Games – Dragon Boat 2013, China, 2 Golds – DB22 Open, 500m; DB12 Open, 200m; Silver – DB22 Open, 200m; Silver – DB12 Open, 200m
IDBF World Dragon Boat Racing Championships 2015, Welland, 3 Golds – DB22 Mixed, 1000m; DB12 Open, 2000m, 500m; 2 Bronzes – DB22 Mixed, 2000m, 200m
ADBF Asian Dragon Boat Championships 2016, Adelaide, 4 Golds – DB22 Mixed, 500m, 200m; DB12 Mixed, 500m, 200m

Dragon Boat World Athlete, Wu Chun-Chieh, hails from Hualien, Taiwan. He’s been into canoeing and kayaking before he found his passion and love for dragon boat. This World Athlete loves to watch sports games like NBA, MLB, Canoeing, Swimming, Rowing and a lot more besides.

“Dragon Boat is a very famous sport among the Chinese.”, he said. “It’s a traditional sport that is very significant in our culture.” When Chun-Chieh was only a young boy, he had already witnessed his father racing dragon boats. Later on he learned that the races are being held as part of the Dragon Boat Festival which falls on the on the fifth day of the fifth month (5/5) of the traditional lunar calendar.

Dragon Boat World Athlete Wu Chun-Chieh

When Chun-Chieh was 14 years old, he started to train in canoeing with Mr. CaNoe, a Taiwan-based sports club. In 2011, he decided to join the dragon boat team and since he’s an experienced canoeist, it was not difficult for him to learn and master dragon boat paddling.

Dragon Boat World Athlete Wu Chun-Chieh

We asked him a few questions about his life as a dragon boater, how the Chinese-Taipei Dragon Boat Team prepares for major races and how they rose to the top.

Q: Where does the Chinese-Taipei National Team usually train? How often do you train and do you have night trainings?

A: We do our trainings at Liyu Lake. It’s in Hualien, Taiwan, where I’m from. We train ten times a week, twice a day. Training lasts for about one to two hours. It’s usually morning or afternoon as we don’t have night trainings.

Q: Is Liyu Lake a good location for the National Athletes? How do you (the athletes) travel going to the trainings? How far is it from your place?

A: It’s a good venue for training aside from the occasional motor boats circling around the lake. I always drive to go to our practices and the distance is just about 20km from my place.

Dragon Boat World Athlete Wu Chun-Chieh
Dragon Boat World Athlete Wu Chun-Chieh

Q: How does the selection process in your team happen? Do you conduct National try-outs? Are your athletes picked from the Universities or Clubs or they need to go for the open try-outs?

A: Most of our team members started in Kayaking. We don’t have any special ways in picking team members. I guess it’s safe to say that the only requirement is passion and love for the sport.

Q: What does it take to be a National Athlete?

A: 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.

Dragon Boat World Athlete Wu Chun-Chieh

Q: How long do you prepare in competing for the World Championships? What are the preparations? Do you stay in one camp?

A: Four months of preparation. Yes, we train together as a group and we try to keep fit. We stay in one camp when the intensive training season starts.

Q: How do you keep fit? Any tips in keeping a healthy and clean lifestyle?

A: Find someone who loves to exercise and just keep training with them. I try to avoid eating out so I cook for myself.

Dragon Boat World Athlete Wu Chun-Chieh

Q: Outside the dragon boating world, who is the athlete that you admire most and why?

A: Adam van Koeverden. He’s a Canadian sprint kayaker. The very first time I saw him on TV was when he became an Olympic champion. He’s the athlete I look up to and admire the most till now.

Photos: Yu-Hsuan Hsieh, Pei Shao, Allie Gau, 周馬耀, Ed Nguyen

*This interview has been edited and condensed

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25 More Dragon Boat Accounts to Love on Instagram

The global usage of Instagram is ever increasing and is now estimated at 400 million active users monthly. While thousands and thousands of dragon boat-themed accounts are now active on this photo/video-sharing mobile app; whether it’s for social or marketing use, it’s all good publicity for the sport.

The utilisation of this social networking service varies in a lot of ways: to promote the team, to inspire team members and followers, to feature paddlers, coaches or sponsors, to advertise dragon boat products and services, to broadcast upcoming races, and so on and so forth.

No matter. To us paddlers or dragon boaters, these dragon boat accounts that we follow make us feel good; and while a multitude of accounts emerge on a daily basis (perhaps hourly, or by the minute even), this just means that our sport is growing exponentially, which is a good thing. If your team is not on Instagram yet, consider creating one. It’s going to be worthwhile.

From visually inspirational images and videos, to helpful health tips, to motivational quotes; these accounts may have, in one way or another, mirrored the dragon boating/paddling life that we aspire.

Here are 25 more dragon boat accounts that will not only ‘re-fresh’ our Instagram feed; but will also make us smile, laugh or give our creativity the much needed boost.

1. UBC Thunder

2. Shell & Turcas Dragon Team

3. Chinese Youth League Dragon Boat

Lego dragon boat paddle today! #cyldb

A photo posted by CYLDB (@cyl.dragonboat) on

4. Empire Dragon Boat Team

Beautiful day of racing in Burlington! Thank you @ridethedragonvt for amazing hospitality and fun times! #bestfestival

A photo posted by Empire Dragon Boat (@empiredragonboatteam) on

5. Dubai Diggers

6. PLK Paddlers

7. Paddlers Anonymous

#paddlersanon Christmas party last night 🎅🏻🎄 #family

A photo posted by Paddlers Anonymous (@paddlersanon) on

8. Dragon Boat Steelcraft

9. Dragon Boat Banyoles

10. National University of Singapore (NUS) Dragon Boat Team

11. Western U Dragon Boat Club

12. Toronto International Dragon Boat Race Festival

13. Montgomery Dragon Boat Race and Festival

Your 2014 Grand Champions! The Bravest from the Montgomery Fire Department. #mgmdragonboat

A photo posted by Montgomery Dragon Boat Fest (@mgmdragonboat) on

14. Lian Dragon Boat Club

❤️ Lian club ❤️ #lian_club #team #teammates #Bushehr #Iran #team #dragonboat #dragon #boat

A photo posted by Lian club (@lian_dragonboat_club) on

15. Water Vipers

16. Dragon Hearts Thunderbreaker

17. Sky Dragon Team

Ceremonia Despertando al Dragón! #wakeup #dragonboat

A photo posted by Sky Dragon (@skydragonteam) on

18. Emerald City Dragon Boat Club

Glorious Fall paddle right before the wind kicked up. #dragonboat #dragonboating #realoregon #dexterlake

A photo posted by Emerald City Dragon Boat Club (@ecdbc) on

19. Persian Gulf Dragon Boat

20. Doha Dragons – Qatar Dragon Boat Team

21. Intertek Dragon Team

Dragon Festivali tarihinde verilmis en iyi poz 🙂 Kupa kazanmayi bilene yakisir :)) 🏆😎💪

A photo posted by Intertek Dragon Team (@intertekdragonteam) on

22. UCI Elements

23. North Eastern Dragon Boaters Association

Nedba #p21

A photo posted by NE Dragon Boaters (@nedragonboaters) on

24. Lorestan Dragonboat

مربی ارزشمند لرستانی "مهدی فاضلی" در سال 84 با شروع فعالیت قایقرانی در استان فعالیت خود را در دراگون بت به عنوان ورزشکار شروع کرد و در هشت دوره مسابقات کشوری این رشته شرکت کرد." مهدی فاضلی"در کارنامه خود 5 دوره مربی تیم دراگون بت لرستان بوده که نتایج قابل دفاعی برای جامعه ورزشی لرستان کسب کرده.مقام چهارمی سومی و دومی کشور در رشته دراگون بت تنها بخشی از رزومه اوست که در این چند سال دو بار هم تیم لرستان به عنوان پدیده و شگفتی ساز مسابقات شناخته شد.فاضلی مدارج مربیگری درجه دو و سه و بین المللی را کسب کرده و همچنین تعداد زیادی از شاگردان وی در تیم ملی و مسابقات جهانی و آسیایی عضو ثابت تیم ملی بوده اند.مربی تیم لرستان سه بار به اردوی تیم ملی دعوت شده که یک بار آن به عنوان مربی اصلی تیم ملی اعزامی به مسابقات قهرمانی آسیا در چین نماینده ورزش لرستان بوده که در آن مسابقات تیم ایران مقام چهارم را بدست آورد. #iran#lorestan #khoramabad #khorramabad #goproapp #gopro_4life #goproir #goodfriends #goprophotography #goproiran #goproiranfanpage #goproeverything #gopro #goprophotography_ #nature #natgeo #everydayiran #خرم_آباد #لرستان #لرها #lorestan_e_kohan #lorestaniha #lorestaniam #lorestantravel#iranemoon #yaftenews#lorestan_e_kohan #everydayiran #akkaskhoone#دریاچه #کیو#بام

A photo posted by @lorestan_dragonboat on

25. University College Dragon Boat Club

*Different search engines, Iconosquare, and Instagram Web were used to help populate this list.

In the coming 2016, we shall feature a list of the Most Inspirational Paddlers on Instagram. Let us know if you want to anonymously nominate a friend, coach, team manager or a teammate. Share with us a brief intro or just simply send us a link of their account in our email: eugephemisms [at] gmail [dot] com

25 Dragon Boat Accounts to Follow on Instagram

Whether these accounts have posted five or five hundred media, regardless if they have twenty or two thousand followers; these accounts do not only share tastefully edited or unedited images and videos but they also contribute a great deal in promulgating the sport of dragon boat.

If you or your team is on Instagram, whether the post is your own or a repost, more than creating the best collages or finding the right filter; it’s always a delight to see dragon boat images, videos or memes which inspires and energises. Also, it’ll be great if you could provide your followers (and future ones) with the appropriate captions and hashtags.

Generally speaking, in sharing our photos or videos, we can be as creative as we can be and at the same time be really funny or inspirational, too. We can be as informative and yet not too braggy and self-important. We can post anything that we fancy, just so long as it’s original and ‘Instagram-worthy.’

Since Instagram is best used real-time, you may also want to mention the dragon boat race that’s ongoing or where your team practice or team excursion is happening by using the location setting or simply state the city or country in the caption field.

Wherever you are paddling, be it in Poland, Singapore, Puerto Rico, Canada, United Arab Emirates, United States, Trinidad & Tobago, Australia or Isle of Man, it will be good to know that an exciting dragon boat event is happening in your area.

#dragonboat #dragonboatrace #dragonboatfestival

With the help of Iconosquare, Instagram Web, and search engines, we have digitally populated these trendsetters for this year (2015) and may you be enthused by these fun and inspiring dragon boat accounts—follow them and take note of how they effectively make use of the hashtags.

1. Ryerson Dragonboat Club

2. Dreadnought Dragon Boat Team

3. Dragon Boat Pinatar

4. Dragon Boat MVP

5. Dragon Boat Innovate

6. Dragonboat Club Master Russia

View this post on Instagram

#Kazan #not_our

A post shared by Dragonboat Club Master Russia (@dragonboatmaster) on

7. Hammerheads Dragon Boat Club

8. A-Team Dubai Dragon Boat Club

9. Waterloo Dragon Boat Club

10. Aquaholics Dragon Boat Club

11. Orlando Dragon Boat Club

12. Catch22 NYC Dragon Boat

13. Pennsylvania Dragon Boat Club

14. George Brown Dragon Boat Club

15. Smokipoludnia Poland

16. Oar Struck Dragon Boat Club

17. Hawaii Dragon Boat Festival

18. SIM Dragons Singapore

19. San Juan Dragonborn Club

20. HKU Dragon Boat Team 香港大學龍舟隊

21. XGenerals Dragonboat Team

22. ACCA Dragon Boat Racing Team


23. GWN Dragon Boat

24. One West Dragon Boat

25. DLSU Dragon Boat Team

So the next time we’re rendering our desired saturation, shadows, tilt shift and contrast or we’re choosing between Juno, Ludwig or Willow to filter our post, let’s not forget to use the dragon boat hashtags to promote the sport. We need dragon boat to be out there and be at par amongst the more popular ones.

*We shall feature the next 25 Accounts to Follow on IG before the year ends. We’ll also keep a lookout for the 2016 Dragon Boat influencers on Social Media (e.g. Twitter, Facebook). Meanwhile, keep on spreading the word and the love for the sport!