The Youth Skill Development Program is operated by the Williams Lake Cross Country Ski Club for children up to 12 years of age, with the emphasis on fun, participation, skill development and safety. The objective of the program is to provide the opportunity for children to move through the sport at their own ‘speed’, based on their ability, skills and interests.
The program is designed to help children develop excellent ski technique through a vertically integrated continuum of skier development opportunities, beginning with Bunnyrabbits, followed by Jackrabbits and concluding with Track Attack. This reflects the emphasis on achieving program goals in an atmosphere that is fun and exciting for children.
This exciting program is held at Bull Mountain Ski Area, operated by the Williams Lake Cross-Country Ski Club. The sessions take place on Sundays from 1 pm to 3 pm and Wednesdays from 5:30 to 7 pm, starting in December and running through to early March.
We will place your child into a group at the appropriate skill level and age. Please provide as much detail as possible about your child’s ability, experience, fitness level and any medical concerns on the back of the registration form.
YOUTH SDP Schedule
Sundays 1 – 3 pm
Wednesday evenings 5:30 – 7 pm
Programs start in December and run until March.
Bunnies (up to 5 years)
The first level of the SDP is the Bunnyrabbit program, which is directed at children in the ‘Active Start’ stage of athlete development (children five years of age and younger). The objective is to introduce cross-country skiing and the healthy lifestyle associated with it through organized activity and active play. In addition, it is designed to:
- Help children develop a positive self-image
- Be fun
- Provide children an opportunity to make ski friends
- Develop fundamental movement skills
- Help children develop an awareness and appreciation of the natural environment
Jackrabbits (6 to 9 years)
The Jackrabbit Program, which is directed at skiers in the ‘FUNdamentals’ stage of athlete development (children six to nine years of age) is the second level of the SDP. The objective is for children to learn basic cross-country ski skills (both classic and skating) and to instill a lifelong interest in the sport, thereby enhancing their quality of life and health. In addition, it is designed to:
- Help children develop confidence
- Be fun
- Provide children an opportunity to ski and socialize with their ski friends
- Build overall motor skills
- Help children develop outdoor winter safety skills
JACKRABBITS CAN NOW REGISTER ONLINE THROUGH ZONE4
Track Attack (10 to 12 years)
The Track Attack Program, which is directed at children in the ‘Learning to Train’ stage of athlete development (children 10 to 12 years of age), is the third level of the SDP. The objective is for the participants to become technically competent cross-country skiers and to utilize their skills to explore a wide range of cross-country ski activities, from back country excursions to Ski Tournaments. In addition, it is designed to:
- Develop fitness through active play, games and other activities
- Be fun
- Provide children an opportunity to be part of a sport ‘team’
- Develop overall sport skills
- Expose children to a variety of ‘adventure-based’ cross-country ski activities
Bull Mountain Racers (9 years and up)
Our racing program follows Cross Country Canada’s Long-Term Athlete Development model (LTAD) and strives to provide age-appropriate instruction and training for all skiers involved. Further information on the LTAD model can be found at crosscountrybc.ca.
Bull Mountain Racers is a supplementary program delivered in conjunction with our Youth Skill Development Programs. Jackrabbit and Track Attack skiers who are interested in focussed training and races are welcome to join our Bull Mountain Racers team. The team practices one or more additional times per week, and these skiers often participate in local and out-of-town races and loppets.
Youth Recreational Skiers (10-18 years)
The Williams Lake Cross Country Ski Club (WLCCSC) is planning to continue the new Youth Fun Ski Program (Recreation) for youth ages 10 to 18. This program will run each Sunday from 1:00 pm-3:00 pm at the Bull Mountain Ski Trails starting in January until early March. No session will run on February 11 (Family Day Weekend).
The program will not run on days where it is colder than -15 Celcius at 12:00 noon on Environment Canada’s website for the Williams Lake Airport (also posted on the website at www.williamslakecrosscountryskiclub.ca)
The group will head out from the warming hut on a fun classic ski with 2 trained coaches or parent volunteers who will act mainly as guides and provide minimal instruction on skiing technique. The group will be divided up so those willing and able to go further and faster can while others can go for a shorter distance at a slower speed. Skiers may also skate ski provided they have the proper equipment and have a basic level of competence for that technique.
This program is targeting youth that have some previous cross country ski experience and who wish to ski for fun only at a recreational level (non competitive). It is a SKI for LIFE idea which will focus on enjoying nature, and skiing for fun with others who share similar interests. It appeals to young skiers and teenagers who have a wide range of ski experience and abilities along with ‘late starters’ to the sport of Nordic skiing. It applies to skiers who have skied before but have not kept up with it on a regular basis or desire a non-competitive environment in which to ski. We will have fun and improve the physical fitness of participants. We hope to develop these young skiers into life long cross country ski enthusiasts!
Parents are encouraged to come along for the ski as well.
Skiers are expected to provide their own equipment.
PARENT VOLUNTEERS: Parent involvement is the key for success of the Skill Development Program which can only continue to grow with the participation of parents. This year we may be short on coaches so we would like to have parent volunteers ski with the Bunnyrabbit and Level 1 & 2 Jackrabbits. Each parent should be prepared to ski with their child’s group for at least one session. This will help to ensure that there are at least two adults with each group.