Chynna Chan's picture

Badass Woman of the Month: Hiro Fukumoto

The Urban Dictionary defines a badass as someone who does what she wants when she wants, where she wants. You won't find her on Facebook because she is probably out being cool somewhere. (Like Dragonboat Racing!!)  She feels no obligation whatsoever to justify her beliefs, values, convictions, morals, etc., with anyone. She likes her music because it sounds cool to her. You won't find her if you look for her because there is no sure way to identify her. We are everywhere. One does not think that she is badass; she KNOWS it, and that's that.

Welcome to our first Badass Hiro Fukumoto!

Here are the deets…

What brought you Dragon Boat Racing? What made you think, hmmm I think I'll try this out?

I actually got "into it" before getting into an actual Dragonboat one summer. I had a couple friends that had joined Penn Dragon Boat (now PDBC) and I wanted to get back into exercising/sports more regularly so I came out to their land practices. I enjoyed the team dynamic and encouraged me to get back into exercising.  Now, I like the feeling of having supportive and encouraging friends around. Being a part of PFP with it’s the strong and fierce women has pushed me to train harder get stronger than I have before, physically and mentally.

What do you do for a living?

I’ve been an operating room nurse at CHOP for the past year and a half. I was a nurse, on an inpatient surgical unit for two years, prior to that.

How do you keep calm, cool and collected when you feel like freaking out at the start of a race?

It helps knowing you're part a team. That it's not me alone in the boat. As we're lining up or before approaching the start, I always close my eyes for a second (when appropriate HA HA and not when anyone is giving instructions etc...) and take a one or two deep breaths. 

Do you have a personal mantra?

(Not sure if it's necessarily a personal mantra HA HA and I have to be reminded this sometimes too but) not stressing over something you can't change and focusing on what it is you can.

What is your paddle of choice?

A Zre paddle

What is it about the sport/team that appeals to you the most?  Has that changed? Or remained a constant?

I guess I sort of answered this earlier. What drew me to PFP was the competitiveness and strength of the team that I had seen from festivals. The reason why I have still paddle has remained the same.

What advice would you give to any newcomers?

Enjoy the time on the water! Everyone has started at the beginning. You probably will have your limits pushed physically and mentally but you're doing it with an entire team of encouraging teammates.

Hiro graciously allowed herself to be our guinea pig! With her being the first – we are still tinkering with what to ask. We hope you have enjoyed reading about one of our amazing teammates! We want to continue the Badass Woman of the Month – but we need a little bit of help from our audience.

What do want you to know about our Badass’? Please send me your requests of those burning questions that you have to and put Badass ?? as the subject.

If you want to come take a peek at what Amazeballs Women we have and what Philadelphia Flying Phoenix is all about or if you have a passion for fitness and competition – check us out! No Experience needed!! We always have Meetups where you can sign up to come to a practice! You can use the Meetup App or signup – right from our web page. Paddles up!


Christine H's picture

Philadelphia Spring Regatta

This past Sunday, the PFP armada made its presence felt at the Philadelphia Canoe Club Spring Regatta on the Schuylkill River! It was a 7.1 mile race in our own territory. The race included multiple turns, and we were blessed with wind gusts of 25+ mph! It was a cold, blustery day - not spring-like at all! Thank goodness for the firepit outside of the PCC club house, which was well-tended by Emilia.

Wahine Warriors Bonnie, Janet, Ninja, Christine, Meegan and Rosemary raced in an OC6. Emilia, Nono, Karen and Adamski paddled hard in a C4. Sunny, Hiro and Ann Torockio impressively braved the winds in OC-1s. Hype raced in her surfski.

Our crew did an excellent job. We had several new racers who never raced in a small boat before! Hype blew through the course in her surfski. The well-trained C4 crew quickly took off after the mass start to finish the race among faster surfskis and kayaks. Badass Sunny in her OC-1 kept pace with a mixed OC-6 crew the entire time! The OC-6 Wahine women were right behind them, finishing strong only a little more than a minute behind a mixed crew. The fearless solo paddlers in OC-1s paddled hard amid the larger boats and the gusts of wind to finish their first races of the season. A valiant effort was put forth by all!

It was a nice way to usher in spring, minus the spring weather.

By Christine Hsu and Meegan Coll with Photos by Sunny Jackson and Nina Rebman


Ann Torockio's picture

PFP in the Media: Philadelphia Neighborhoods

A few weeks ago a reporters, Mark McCormick and Michael A Guise, visited a Philadelphia Flying Phoenix Row Fit training session. Checkout the interview video below and read their article about PFP and our head coach, Hype Mattingly here.