Water Activities Centre

 Registered Charity No: 1025713

aala Essa logo

A dragon boat is a human-powered boat, which originated in China over 2000 years ago.

For competition events, dragon boats are rigged with decorative Chinese dragon heads

and tails. Paddlers sit facing forwards, and use a specific type of paddle with one blade.


Be a part of Chinese traditions, get together a team of 10 paddlers and a drummer

and grab your slot on our Dragon Boat Dash Leaderboard. Can you beat the

winning time?

If you have enough for 2 teams we race against each other to add even more



We offer half day or evening sessions in our 2 Junior Dragon Boats, each seating 10

paddlers. We also offer BDA (British Dragon Boat Racing Association) coaching awards.


Taster session (evening 2 hours or half day 2 ½ hours):

  • Get dressed and ready for the session

  • Safety briefing and buddy system

  • Holding the paddle, paddle strokes, commands and formation on land

  • Launch boat, all aboard

  • Working together to paddle evenly as a team, practicing forwards, backwards, stopping, starting and commands

  • Timed race to go on the ESSA leaderboard

  • Games if there is time/if appropriate

  • Return to shore, return paddles and store boat


If you have more than 20 paddlers, we can put other paddlers in rowing boats and swap the group around.


Who can do this activity? Find the Scout Activity Badge here and the Girlguiding guidance here.


BDA Basic Helm (1 Day)

The Basic Helm award enables you to become the helm of a dragon boat, looking after the people on board and delivering briefings, learning new skills and playing games.


BDA Centre Coach (1 Day)

The Centre Coach Award qualifies you to coach crews under race conditions and supervise the training of helms.