The group was inspired by the Paddlers for Life network of dragon boating clubs for women recovering from breast cancer, their friends and family

The group has two Dragon Boats – Emma (the little boat) is based on Edinburgh’s Union Canal at Bridge 8 Hub and Isla Mae (the big boat) is currently moored at Lochore Meadows.

The group paddle out most weekends and the ethos is mostly non-competitive. We paddle to improve our fitness and we talk and laugh to improve our lives!

You don’t need to be physically strong and fit – as long as you can get into the boat and hold a paddle we can work on the rest (although we do not advise coming out on the water with us during chemotherapy).

The group is wonderfully supportive and friendly you are very welcome to come along and join us on the water – your first paddle is free – then annual membership is only £60!!


Dragon boating has been proven to help with upper body and arm lymphoedema. This is the fluid collection and swelling which can occur after surgery and radiotherapy. The vigorous use of muscles in the arms and upper body helps to move this fluid back into the circulation.


After completion of treatment for cancer we are often left with mind numbing fatigue and a feeling of having been abandoned after the support which we received during treatment seems to stop. Our bodies have changed and our strength can feel reduced.


Going to a gym or swimming pool can feel daunting when you are trying to find your way back to fitness. Dragon boating provides the emotional support of being with people who’ve been where you are now!

Dragon boating provides a way to exercise at a level which suits you with new friends around you to provide support and encouragement.