Some Dragonboat Terminology that is commonly used within the community:
“Attention” (Your Attention, Please): Part of the starter’s calls just before “Go!” in a race. Your blade is buried in the water, ready for the first stroke, top arm high and straight.
Back paddle – Paddle the boat backwards, but keep your lead in front of you.
Brace the boat – Rest the shaft of your paddle on the gunnel and the blade flat on the water to give the boat extra stability.
Let it run – Cease paddling.
Draw – Pull paddle through water towards the boat at a 45-degree angle.
Port – Left side of the boat.
Starboard – Right side of the boat.
Sit ready – After a rest, this is your caller’s warning to prepare yourself. “Paddles up!” is usually next.
Paddles up – Position yourself for the drive, waiting for the leads to start.
Take it away – The caller’s command to begin paddling.
Hold (Hold the boat) – Bury the blade in the water, straight down, to stop the boat.
Power (Power 10) – A sequence of 10 strokes at 100% of power but maintaining the same stroke rate.
Reach for power – The last transition during the “race start”, where the boat shifts from the fast “up” rate to the longer, slower race rate.
Rotation/rotate – A twisting/pivoting of the torso during the stroke, which allows you to deliver much more power. Picture a good golf or tennis swing.
Extend – Encouragement to reach for a longer stroke.
Catch – The beginning of the stroke, where the paddle is poised above the water just before the drive.
Pull – This part of the stroke delivers your power into the water. Picture yourself unrotating and pulling the boat through the water.
Exit – Extracting the paddle from the water at the end of the pull. The exit should happen before your thigh. Do not let the paddle drag behind you.
Recovery – The in-the-air part. The paddle floats forward over the water to prepare for the next stroke.