About us

Breasts Ahoy

Southern New Brunswick's Breast Cancer Survivor Team

Welcome to Breasts Ahoy! We are a team of dragon boat paddlers from Saint John, New Brunswick and surrounding area who have survived breast cancer and wish to celebrate life by paddling together to promote fitness, health and having fun. We paddle from spring to fall and meet throughout the winter to participate in membership activities, fundraise, and plan the next paddling season.



Our Mission

To help people who have had breast cancer understand they can live a full and active life, despite the physical limitations imposed by the disease. To celebrate being alive.

Team Goals

To maintain a team of breast cancer survivors strong in body and spirit by paddling for fitness and fun. To spread the word that one can celebrate life after breast cancer.

Our Vision

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About Us

History of Breasts Ahoy

In May 2002 four women became acquainted at a weekly exercise class specifically designed for those recovering from breast cancer surgery. During this period they were introduced to the idea of dragon boating for breast cancer survivors.
In August the four met and formed plans to make dragon boating a reality for breast cancer survivors in Saint John and the surrounding area. Their goal was to be paddling on the Kennebecasis River in the spring of 2003. More survivors signed up at each meeting and they agreed on a team name Breasts Ahoy (in keeping with Maritime roots). They developed a team logo, the team colours, a mission statement, a plan to move ahead and a temporary website. After fundraising and with help from sponsors, the team purchased a dragon boat. They received support from the medical community. The team chose an executive and formed other committees to carry on team operations.

Breasts Ahoy members have attended Dragon Boat Festivals around the Maritimes, Montreal and Vermont and participated in international festivals in Vancouver, BC in 2005, Peterborough, Ontario in 2010, Sarasota FL, USA in 2014, Florence, Italy in 2018, and Vancouver BC in 2022.



About Us

History of Dragon Boating

History of Survivor Dragon Boating:In the fall of 1995, a research project was being conducted by Dr. Don McKenzie, a sports medicine physician and an exercise physiologist, at the Allan McGavin Sports Medicine Centre at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver, BC. This study looked at cardiorespiratory fitness levels in two groups of women – one group had been treated for breast cancer, the other group had no history of breast cancer. The breast cancer group had many anecdotal stories about the “don’ts” they had been told after treatment. Most of this advice restricted activities involving the upper body. Though well intentioned, there was no published research that supported this information. A desire to return these individuals to an unrestricted, active lifestyle, as well as the lack of scientific proof to the contrary, were the impetus behind Dr. McKenzie’s idea to form this first all breast cancer survivor dragon boat team. Dragon boating was chosen as the sport for several reasons:



Membership Structure

Breasts Ahoy has four classes of membership

Active Member

Is a breast cancer survivor who participates in 75% of team activities including paddling, festivals and committee work.

Associate Member

Is a breast cancer survivor who is unable to participate in all activities such as paddling.

Supporting Member

Any individual who has an interest in and supports the team.

Team Administration

The Elections for the executive and committee chairpersons are held in November every two years. Team committees oversee the year round activities of the team.