Frequently Asked Questions
I am interested in registering my child for skating lessons, how does your CanSkate program work?
This year, due to public health restrictions, spots in our CanSkate classes are limited. We also have a limited number of program assistants and may therefore have to restrict the number of beginner skaters between the ages of 3 and 5 who cannot stand on ice without help and walk a couple of meters by themselves .
CanSkate is Skate Canada’s official “Learn to Skate” program. It is regarded by other ice sport organizations as one of the most preferred curricula to develop the skills needed to participate in ice sports. The CanSkate program is designed to teach the fundamentals of skating for all children, those who have never skated as well as those who have some skating experience. It is a fun. The program inculcate a love of not only skating, but physical activity for life.
All CanSkate programs are taught by professional NCCP coaches who are assisted by Program Assistants. For more information on how CanSkate laid the foundation for professional athletes, please visit SkateCanada.
- Pre CanSkate: This 45-minute class is designed for children 3,5 to 8 years of age who have little or no skating experience. Skaters are taught how to fall down and get up, skate forwards, make snow, walk backwards, etc. Skaters move on to the CanSkate ‘1’ session once they have completed their Pre-CanSkate level.
- CanSkate: This 45-minute class is designed for children 4 -12 years of age who range in experience from having very little time on the ice to those who have extensive experience on the ice but are looking to learn proper skills, balance and coordination on ice.
There are six stages to the CanSkate program and skaters are grouped together by skill level/ stage progression. The ice is divided up into groups and there may be as many as four different groups of max 9 skaters in each group during one session. If you have already skated with us, we have a record of what levels you achieved during your last program session. If you are new to us we will assess and place your skater in the appropriate level. We will check every child to make sure they are in the right group. For more information on the Stages of CanSkate please use this link
- STAR group: This is a 45-minute class for skaters who have already completed Stage 6 of the CanSkate program. This is figure skating program where skaters learn basics of figure skating disciplines like freestyle, dance, skills, synchro. We offer those disciplines in private lessons as well.
- AdultSkate group lessons are not offered at CSL FSC. Adults can register for private lessons with a coach. Make sure to contact a private instructor to ask for their availability in advance before starting registration process. You can find the list of private coaches and their contacts on Our Coaches page.
When can I register for a program?
Registration dates can vary from year to year and by season. We recommend that you create a profile on our website ahead of the registration date and be ready to register your skater online once registration opens.
For Fall-Winter Sessions: Registration usually begins mid September.
For Spring/Summer Sessions: Registration usually begins end of March or early April.
Dates will be announced ahead of time on our website.
How should I register for a program?
The only way to register for our programs is through our website online. Create an account with us online before the registration date and set up your profile so you can be ready to register right when it opens. Be sure to enable email notifications as this is how we will provide you with important information regarding your sessions such as cancellations. CSL Skating Club does not use your email for spam or any non-pertinent information.
If I have more than one skater in my family, does every skater have to pay the SkateCanada membership fee or is it one fee per family?
The $44 Skate Canada Membership Fee must be paid for every skater registered with the CSL FS Club. The membership fee provides insurance for each member, providing our club and skaters a safe environment in which we can enjoy skating.
Do sessions fill up quickly?
Yes! Our CanSkate program is very popular and many classes offered will reach the maximum number of skaters before the starting date. We do have waiting lists when sessions fill, but it is best to register early to guarantee a spot.
What is the ratio of coaches to skaters in group programs?
We aim to have one coach for every 9 or less skaters on the ice. There are also Program Assistants to ensure that skaters get the help they need.
Do I need any special equipment for CanSkate program?
All Skate Canada member clubs and skating schools who offer a CanSkate program must ensure all CanSkate even Teen CanSkate participants Stage 5 and under must wear a CSA approved hockey helmet while on the ice. Hockey helmets are designed to help protect against head injuries occurring on ice, whether from a fall or collision. You must have your own equipment. Skaters who arrive to class without the proper equipment will not be allowed on the ice.
What should my child wear to skating lessons?
A properly adjusted, strapped CSA approved hockey helmet must be worn on ice at all times. A bicycle or a ski helmet is not permitted.
Any kind of single-blade ice skates are allowed in CanSkate programs - figure skating, hockey, recreational. Please make sure that blades are well-sharpened and skates are properly fitted and laced up (not too tight, not too loose) to ensure stability of the ankle. We recommend to wear blade protectors when not on ice in order to preserve blades in better condition.
Gloves or mittens are compulsory. Knee and arm-protectors are optional, but recommended for beginners.
No uniform is required this year. Dress your child in warm and comfortable clothes suitable for physical activities in +5 C temperature (jacket, pants, neck-warmers). For protection of you child, please avoid loose-hanging items, like long scarfs, layered skirts and bijou.
Can I rent helmets and skates at the arena?
No. There are no skate and helmet rentals available at our club. Be sure to purchase them in a store and arrive to lessons fully equipped. Skaters who arrive to class without the proper equipment will not be allowed on the ice.
Where can I buy skates and helmets?
You can find hockey and figure skating equipment, in many sports specializing in sports equipment like Canadian Tire, Sport Experts, La Source du Sport, Sport Campus. You can also buy used skates from places like Play it Again Sports.
Where can I sharpen skates? Can I do it at the arena?
Most of stores selling hockey equipment also provide sharpening services. There is a sharpening shop at the arena, but it is run by the City of CSL and its operation may not be aligned with the club programs. Please contact the city directly for all inquiries about the sharpening shop opening hours.
My child has a very little skating experience. Should I bring a skating bar for him?
No, you should not. Coaches make sessions active using club’s training aids only.
Do I need to stay in the arena while my child is on the ice?
Skaters are required to have one parent or responsible guardian in the arena at all times. Due to Covid-19 restrictions only one parent or responsible guardian per family is allowed to accompany a child. Following government rules, all parents entering arena must wear a face mask and have their vaccination passport and a valid ID card prepared at the entrance.
Changing rooms are unavailable this year. We encourage bringing your child dressed up. But you can use lower benches inside the arena to put the skates on.
During the class parents and guardians should stay seated at the top benches with a 2 metres distance whenever possible. Please minimize your time in the hallways near the ice to avoid crowding and keep safe passage for all program participants.
Parents are not allowed to initiate communication with children and coaches during the program. Club administrators will bring child outside of ice area and call you, if your assistance is needed.
Can I be on ice with my child during lesson?
Our CanSkate programs are not Parent & Tot program, therefore no parents being allowed on ice during Pre- or CanSkate or Star Group sessions.
Private ice sessions are different. Parents can register in the same private ice sessions where their child enrolled. Before the registration, it is necessary to contact a private instructor and to discuss it with him.
How does my child move up a stage?
Coaches evaluate their skater’s skills continuously. Skaters in Pre CanSkate will receive a ribbon once they have completed all of the skills in this level and our CanSkate skaters receive ribbons for each of the fundamental movements of Agility, Balance and Control at each of the six Stages.
Once they have received the three fundamental movement ribbons on a Stage, they will receive their Stage badge. Sometimes this means changing groups, but your child can remain in the same group if other skaters are progressing at the same rate.
Please note due to limited number of spots in our program this year each group will work on two levels, so the groups mostly will remain stable and kids will be able to stay at the same group bubble
How do I know my child’s progress?
At the end of each season, a child will receive balance, control and agility ribbons and badges of a stage where the child succeeded and achieved an accomplishment. (One Stage=One badge.) If you choose to continue lessons, your child will continue from where they left off.
My child plays hockey but wants to work on his/her skating skills. Should I register for CanSkate or CanPower?
CanSkate teaches the fundamentals of skating, so if your child is a strong skater who is working on skating backwards, skating the rink using alternating strides, and stopping on command without using boards, we would recommend our CanSkate program.
CanPower (not available for 2021/2022 season) is more geared towards skaters six years old and up who are looking for an intensive program to master the fundamentals. Skaters may be any age and must have previous skating experience that equates to Stage 4 in CanSkate or higher.
My child wants to figure skate, do I need to register for CanSkate first?
It is recommended to learn the fundamentals of skating before they can start figure skating and progress through the stages to prepare little children for figure skating private lessons.
You can register in a private ice session without enrolling in a Skate Canada program. A child has to be under supervision of a private instructor all the time while on ice. Make sure to contact a private instructor to ask for their availability in advance before starting registration process. You can find the list of private coaches and their contacts on Our Coaches page.
Can I register for more than one CanSkate session or in a private session at the same time?
Absolutely! The more time a skater spends on the ice, the more chance for progression, practice makes perfect after all! A child enrolled in a CanSkate program can also register in a private “Open” or “Junior” ice.
However, the child has to be under supervision of a private instructor all the time while on ice. Make sure to contact a private instructor to ask for their availability in advance before starting registration process. You can find the list of private coaches and their contacts on Our Coaches page.
Is it possible to get a credit/refund/make-up session for missed sessions due to sickness or vacation?
Credits or refunds are issued when a doctor’s note can be provided. Due to the size of our program, we are not able to provide make-up classes for sessions missed due to illness or vacation.
What if we try a few lessons but do not like it, is it possible to get a refund?
Please read our cancellation policy carefully.
- Cancellations and/or any changes to your registration must be submitted in writing before the program start date to our help desk at firstname.lastname@example.org.
- A $10.00 fee applies to change (within CanSkate sessions only) or cancel a program within cancellation period only.
- The Skate Canada membership fees of $44.00 is non-refundable once paid or owed to Skate Canada;
- Administrative fee of $15.00 is non-refundable
- Partial refunds can be granted only if the request is received one day after the start date of the session (except for medical reasons);
- Partial refunds can be requested for medical reasons: if an illness or an injury prevents the skater from continuing with the skating season, a partial refund will apply for the remaining lessons or ice sessions. This request must be accompanied by medical note;
- The club reserves the right to cancel any program. A refund will apply.