women planting paddles in synchrony
Club international team practice

What are the details about practices?

All fitness levels are welcome. You will build muscles, body tone, and energy, and feel great!

Practice starts at 9:00 am, every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, regardless of weather (see Exceptions, below). Arrive at the North Dock of the Riverplace Marina by 8:30am. See location map and parking map.

screenshot of parking map near Marina
Marina Parking
Blue lines = street parking
Red diamond = public garage

The first 3 practices are free. Thereafter, you’ll have to join the club. Anyone 14 years old or more (minors must be with responsible adult) is welcome to join us for those free practices. However, only those at least 50 years old can join the club.

You must sign waivers. Contact our Membership Director before the morning you come to paddle.

It’s a water sport! You will likely be splashed. Dress accordingly and for the weather.

Identify yourself as a new paddler to anyone there. They can get you started with the right person.

We have a selection of life jackets (PFD) and paddles you can use for the session.

As safety is always an important concern for Golden Dragons, new paddlers should sit in boat #2 (ask which one it is) while you begin learning your stroke and practice getting in and out safely. Ask the caller, the person at the front of the boat who faces towards the back, which bench they would like you to sit on during this session.

If you would like to get started on learning about the techniques of dragon boat paddling, check our Learn page.

Do we always paddle every Mon, Wed and Fri?

Yes, the club plans to paddle 3 days a week year-round regardless whether it is a holiday of any kind, and whatever the weather, EXCEPT when there is a safety issue, such as:

Unsafe river: DragonSports USA declares conditions unsafe to be on the river. Examples are high winds, fast current, flooding, or floating debris. Any such declaration from DSUSA is final and remains in effect until explicitly rescinded. Check our Home page or DSUSA if you suspect a closure.

Unsafe city travel: The Portland Public Schools close or the Portland Bureau of Transportation closes some roads or bridges, usually due to weather conditions such as ice or snow. Check our Home page or local news if you suspect a closure.

At-the-dock unsafe conditions: A tiller, caller or club officer determines, usually at the dock, that conditions are unsafe, such as too few paddlers or fog.