Dragon Boat Water Progression Plan – Level 1



Welcome coaches! This Level 1 program is laid out for participants to paddle once weekly for 10 weeks in the summer with the end result being a festival attendance.

LEVEL 1 PADDLERS: This water progression is for beginner, novice or seasonal paddlers who only paddle and do NOT participate in any other programs to prepare for the upcoming water season. They may be new to paddling or are return paddlers and have paddling experience. As such, there is very basic technical coaching with the end goal of doing a 500M race at the end of 10 sessions. It is important for coaches to keep the team mandate in mind during practices and working within the teams goals. 

LEVEL 1 CRITERIA: This program is formulated on the criteria that defines a level one paddler. These paddlers:

  • Enjoy group participation, community and camaraderie
  • Want to get out on the water and have fun
  • Paddle to be participate in the sport and be active in the summer
  • Want to enjoy an activity that provides well being
  • May be competitive with their own goals and enjoy being in a race but competing is not their focus

LEVEL 1 PROGRESSION GOAL: This program will prepare paddlers to be able to sustain RPE18 for 3 minutes. This is most likely longer than the body of a race but it’s a great number to work up to in pieces that over prepares paddlers for a 500M race in unfavourable weather conditions. This training will also prepare paddlers to do RPE19 as in a start and transition to RPE18 so coaches can build a race strategy.


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