Busting Out, Ottawa's Breast Cancer Survivor Team

Tuesday, June 21, 2016

Bustin out bord 270.jpgBusting Out is Ottawa's only breast cancer survivor team. Many of them have been paddling since the team's inception in 1998, inspired by the first breast cancer survivor dragon boat team that had begun two years prior in Vancouver.

The original team started in 1996 as part of a study to test the effects of rigorous upper body exercise on women who had undergone treatment for breast cancer. After the study, the newly-formed dragon boat team decided to continue training together, as dragon boating offered not only exercise and health benefits, but also the support and camaraderie of their fellow women.

This year Busting Out will be competing at the Tim Hortons Ottawa Dragon Boat Festival in the Breast Cancer Survivor Race, where breast cancer teams from around the country will compete. After the races, the traditional Flower Ceremony will be performed, where the racers will bring their boats together and listen to a greeting, a song is sung and a poem is read. At the end of the ceremony, all paddlers, as well as survivors and supporters on the shore, throw pink carnations into the water and watch them float away on the current.

With over 65 members, Busting Out meets twice a week to paddle along the Rideau River. They come from all walks of life but have one thing in common: they are survivors. If you would like to learn more, click here. Or come to the Tim Hortons Ottawa Dragon Boat Festival to see them compete on June 26th, 12:30 p.m. at the Breast Cancer Survivor Race.

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