Canadian Sport Instute

Pre-Olympic Winter Sport Round-Up


If you don’t plan on making the trek to Pyeonchang in February but you’re still keen on seeing the best of the best compete in front of your very eyes, click here to check out what’s coming up soon at a 1988 vintage venue near you!


Pre-Olympic Winter Sport Round-Up

Thirty years on, Calgary’s Olympic winter sport venues continue to host the best athletes in the world. While many Olympic arenas and stadiums around the world lie vacant, unused or are turned into convention centres, the legacy of the 1988 Olympic Winter Games lives on in what has become Canada’s major winter sport hub.

The Olympic Oval, Canada Olympic Park, the Canmore Nordic Centre and Nakiska Ski Area are still thriving, not only serving as public recreation spaces and training centres for Canada’s elite and developing athletes, but also habitually hosting international competitions.

With just 77 days to go until the 2018 Olympic Winter Games in Pyeongchang, South Korea begin, athletes from around the world are converging in Alberta for a multitude of pre-Olympic World Cup competitions including alpine skiing, long track speed skating, luge, freestyle skiing, para-nordic skiing, ski cross and women’s hockey.

Dale Henwood, President and CEO of CSI Calgary says these upcoming competitions are a great confidence booster to Canadian athletes preparing for the Olympics.

“These pre-Olympic events help the athletes with the mindset they will need for the Games,” says Henwood. “There are very few events left before the Games and these will help with the final preparation for Canadian athletes as they head into the most exciting and important competition of their lives.”

Henwood adds that the events are a great opportunity for Calgarians and Albertans to see world-class athletes compete in their own backyard and will also bring significant economic benefits to Calgary and Alberta.

Team Canada has already amassed an impressive medal count leading into the Games – including those from long track speed skaters Ted-Jan Bloemen, Ivanie Blondin, Vince De Haitre and Laurent Dubreuil. Other Canadians to watch out for include veteran luger Sam Edney, freestyle skier Brady Leman (ski cross) and alpine skier Erik Guay.

Canadian Sport Institute Calgary: @csicalgary
Written by Kristina Groves: @kngrover
Photo by: Dave Holland @csicalgaryphoto

Open Season for ACD

Aspiring world-class coaches, step right up! Registration is now open for the 2018 Advanced Coaching Diploma (ACD), the pinnacle of coaching education in the National Coaching Certification Program (NCCP). And, for the first time, registration is being offered openly through the Locker portal on the Coaching Association of Canada (CAC) website.

The CSI Calgary is one of three hubs across Canada offering the ACD, a competency-based program that integrates classroom study with a coaching practicum under the leadership of a Master Coach. The mission of the program is to develop world class coaches who are capable of preparing athletes for podium performances in sport, and for life outside of sport.

Interested applicants can access their locker profile on the CAC ( website and choose the institute that best suits their schedule and needs. For example, winter sport coaches will find the ACD schedule at CSI Calgary most complements the winter competition season whereas CSI Ontario is a better fit for coaches with a busy summer season. INS in Quebec offers ACD in French over the summer months.

The ACD is unique in that the program has been able to overcome geographical and scheduling issues, making it available to coaches from just about anywhere in Canada. The synchronous learning platform, which allows coaches to attend courses remotely, isn’t quite as good as being there in person but according to Jason Sjostrom, it’s the next best thing.

“We know that the traditional model of learning together in a classroom is best,” acknowledges Sjostrom. “But given the nature of coaching and the demands of travel and competition schedules, synchronous learning is next best, where coaches have access to all of the content on their own and can still connect with classmates.”

For example, ACD student and bobsleigh coach Lyndon Rush is currently fully and completely focused on the upcoming 2018 Olympics in Peyongchang. However, the Olympic-bound coach can still review classes he’s missed, interact with his fellow classmates and stay up to date on content and coursework.

One of the benefits to coaches learning while immersed in the coaching environment is the ability to develop and display competency in real time, where new ideas and changes can be applied to the work they’re doing with their athletes and then evaluated quickly. “If a coach wants to evoke a change, this model allows them to utilize the content to achieve that, understand why and ask better questions,” explains Sjostrom.

Another advantage to the ACD structure is that it pushes those competencies – the coaches have to remain curious and do the learning. It fosters inquisitive learning and therefore becomes a coach driven program. It motivates coaches to say, ‘I’m here to learn, I want to do these things.’

Canada’s well-deserving and influential coaches were recently honoured and recognized at the 2017 Petro-Canada Sport Leadership Awards Gala in Calgary on November 3rd. The Gala recognizes those who live out the values and competencies of the NCCP and the positive impact they have within the Canadian sport community.

Several Alberta coaches were honoured, including those from CSI Calgary supported sports.

The CSI Calgary salutes these fine Alberta coaches and encourages all the coaches out there wishing to accomplish similar feats to apply for the 2018 ACD cohort.

Investors Group National NCCP Coach Developer Award

Duane Bratt: Lacrosse

Petro Canada Coaching Excellence Awards:

Barb Prystai: Special Olympics Canada
Bart Schouten, ChPC: Speed Skating Canada
Burkhard Schaffer: Alpine Canada Alpin
Kim Cousins, ChPC: Athletics Canada
Ravi Walia: Skate Canada
Wolfgang Staudinger, ChPC: Canadian Luge Association

Canadian Sport Institute Calgary: @csicalgary
Written by Kristina Groves: @kngrover
Photo by: Dave Holland @csicalgaryphoto