Over six million Canadians lace up ice skates every year – and the Comox Valley is no exception. As fall approaches, experienced skaters are heading back to the ice, and it’s an ideal time for newcomers to get started.
This year, the Comox Valley Skating Club has upgraded their extensive program of skating classes with a special focus on making skating accessible to everyone. Things kick off with two Free Try-It Days, Monday, Sept. 23 and Wednesday, Sept. 25, 5:15 to 6 p.m. at the Comox Valley Sports Centre. Everyone is welcome, regardless of experience and comfort level, to enjoy one or both of these sessions. All you need is a helmet; skates can be rented on site for a small fee.
“We’re offering this as an invitation for anyone curious about skating. It will definitely be fun,” says CVSC coach Greg Ladret. “Or if you haven’t skated in a long time, this can be a great re-entry.”
Kids’ classes get started the week of Sept. 30, with three different programs for beginner and novice children, held at the two full-size indoor ice rinks at the Sports Centre:
PreSchool Canskate introduces skating to three to four year olds. The focus is on entertainment and fun while building the child’s confidence and on-ice skills.
Canskate is a “learn-to-skate” program for children five and older. The program uses a badge system to allow students to move at their own pace through seven skill levels. Teaching covers the basics of forward and backward skating, stops, edges, spins, jumps, balance, and control.
Pre-power is an action-packed, high energy instructional program focusing on balance, power, agility, speed and endurance, using an awards program which keeps the kids motivated.
As skaters progress beyond these courses, the CVSC offers Junior Academy, which works as a stepping stone to the more advanced figure skating program. Intermediate and senior figure skaters have opportunities to compete, take tests, and develop as athletes and artists.
All courses are taught by professional coaches with support from trained program assistants.
Skating provides a great workout that develops balance, strength, coordination, courage and focus, says CVSC coach Dawn Ladret. “Hundreds of kids have taken our programs over the years. Many have progressed on to hockey, figure skating, ringette and speed skating; others have simply enjoyed learning this classic Canadian sport,” she adds.
“It’s always wonderful to see them become comfortable on the ice, gain skills, and develop personally through learning to skate.”
Registration takes place Saturday, Sept. 21, 9:30 to 11 a.m.; Monday, Sept. 23 and Wednesday, Sept. 25, 5 to 6:30 p.m. in the Sports Centre lobby.
For more information go to www.comoxvalleyskatingclub.ca, or contact the club at 250-339-9872, firstname.lastname@example.org.
– Comox Valley Skating Club