The Beaver Valley Skating Club (BVSC) broke the ice on the season with its IceBreakers Seminar on Friday and Saturday at the Beaver Valley Arena.
The educational clinic welcomed over 40 skaters, officials, coaches, and parents and included on and off-ice instruction for skaters from Star 1 to competitive.
In addition to skating and coaching instruction, Skate Canada Technical Specialist Diane Stemberger attended to update participants on the skating authority’s rule changes.
“We have a technical update, and an evaluation portion where the coaches and judges will watch and evaluate considering all the changes in skating this year,” said BVSC president Shalaume Leslie. “So we’ll do a technical update with them, we’ll do a technical update with the parents so, for example, if you do this kind of a spin, this is how many points it’s worth because it’s all (based on) a points system.”
Level 3 NCCP coach Deneen Sokoloski from Vancouver led the on-ice instruction putting the skaters through a number of demanding exercises and new techniques, capped off by a jump-spin competition on the final day.
Leslie says, “It is a tremendous and unique opportunity for all skaters” to learn from Sokoloski, who has 28 years experience coaching at the provincial, national, and international levels.
The participants were separated into three age groups that rotated between on-ice instruction and various off-ice classes at the Beaver Valley Curling Club, which included yoga, jump training, drama, dance, and choreography to enhance their routines on the ice.
“They have some edge work that they’re doing, they are doing jumps, they’re doing spins, but all these other things (yoga, drama, dance etc) build on what they do on the ice, so it’s kind of cool,” added Leslie.
While the seminar provided a great learning opportunity for the skaters, it also benefitted coaches, officials, and parents, who had the chance to apply what they learned at the jump-spin competition Saturday evening.
“It gives our coaches not only valuable training techniques, but also an opportunity for them to acquire their mandatory Skate Canada continuing education points.”
The BVSC seminar also received generous support from sponsors, whom the club thanked by sporting T-shirts with the sponsors names during their skating sessions Saturday. Front and centre were Dave and Maureen Drake from Blade Runner Skate Services out of Coldstream, who donated a gift certificate for a pair of GAM skates as a door prize for one of the lucky skaters.
The Beaver Valley Skating Club offers a variety of programs from pre-Can Skate lessons, moving through the Can Skate program into the Rising Star and Star programs.
The JumpStart session is also underway and gives skaters an opportunity to ease back into skating after taking a summer break. The BVSC begins its session Oct. 5.
For more info go to beavervalleyskating.com