Dragon Boating: The Importance of Stretching.

Stretching before and after a training session or race keeps muscles flexible, strong and healthy, which is very important – especially when using muscles in a repetitive way, such as constant paddling.

Dragon Boating is a physically demanding sport, guaranteed to increase your overall fitness with a combination of strength and endurance training.

But also requires an element of aerobic fitness, and a certain amount of power.

And for power, you need muscles.

While there is obviously an emphasis on upper-body strength, it does well to note that the sport actually comprises of a full-body workout.

When it comes to any kind of exercise, it is important to look after your muscles. And you’ll quickly realise that Dragon Boating works a lot of different muscles.

Besides the obvious muscles groups involved, such as the arms and shoulders, there are a lot of other muscle-groups utilised.

The most worked muscles in Dragon Boating are the following:

  • Shoulders
  • Arms
  • Back
  • Legs
  • Core
  • Chest

So how do we look after all these muscles, so they’re kept in powerful, working order?

Stretch!

Stretching is vital when it comes to Dragon Boating in any capacity, whether it be social, competitive or at an elite level.

And while stretching has obvious benefits in warming up your muscles before heading out on the water (sometimes in cold conditions), stretching is also a great way to decrease stress, enhance your range of motion, and improve circulation.

Stretching before and after a training session or race keeps muscles flexible, strong and healthy, which is very important – especially when using muscles in a repetitive way, such as constant paddling.

Remember, Dragon Boating is a full-body workout, so it’s really important to check with your coach and devise a warm-up and warm-down plan.

There’s nothing worse than sustaining an injury and being out for part, or all, of the season.

How?

So what stretches can we do to keep our muscles healthy, and reduce the risk of injury?

See the image below for some basic stretches you and your team can try together, to help get your muscles warmed up before jumping in the boat!

https://www.researchgate.net/publication/330995083_Popsugar-fullbody-stretch

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Book Review: Cilka’s Journey.

A review of: Cilka’s Journey – By Heather Morris.

Source: https://www.allenandunwin.com/browse/books/fiction/popular-fiction/Cilkas-Journey-Heather-Morris-9781760686048

TITLE:

Cilka’s Journey

AUTHOR:

Heather Morris

GENRE:

Historical Fiction, Romance, Holocaust

PUBLISHED:

2019

PAGES:

324

GET IT HERE:

amazon.com

Overview:

Cilka’s Journey, by Heather Morris, is the sequel to ‘The Tattooist of Auschwitz‘, which is based on true stories from World War II in Nazi Germany.

The novel follows the journey of Cilka Klein, who is taken to Auschwitz-Birkenau Concentration Camp when she is just 16 years old. When she arrives, Commandant Schwarzhuber notices her beautiful long hair and separates her from the other prisoners.

Cilka suffers ongoing sexual abuse from two S.S. Officers and is given horrific tasks, which she must do to survive. But these tasks and her perceived position of power create feelings of anger from the other prisoners.

When Auschwitz-Birkenau is finally liberated when Cilka is 18, she is condemned for her role at the Concentration Camp. Cilka is charged as a collaborator for sleeping with the enemy and sentenced to 15 years hard labour in a Siberian Prison Camp – Vorkuta.

Imprisoned once again, and guilty only of surviving, Cilka faces challenges both new, and yet also horrendously familiar. She finds herself taken under the wing of the female doctor at the camp, and begins training as a nurse, determined to help others survive.

Cilka’s story is one strength, determination and survival, even in the harshest of circumstances.

My Thoughts:

Just like ‘The Tattooist of Auschwitz’, ‘Cilka’s Journey’ saddened me deeply. Her story is one of many million suffering souls, forced to experience the unbearable.

The novel carried over nicely from the first installment, with flashbacks of Cilka’s time in Auschwitz-Birkenau to provide context and perspective. The Author, Heather Morris, did her research (and well) – providing a harrowing experience of what life must have been like for thousands of people post-war.

My only criticism of this book is the same one I had for ‘The Tattooist of Auschwitz‘, which was that the novel sometimes seemed rushed – especially toward the end. It seemed as though the ending was squashed in as an afterthought, becoming a tad predictable.

That being said, ‘Cilka’s Journey’ was still an exceptionally moving, heartbreaking and gut-wrenching account of the atrocities of both during and after World War II.

Whether you have read the first novel or not, ‘Cilka’s Journey’ is worth the read.

My Rating: 4/5

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