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Learn To Skate FAQs

Does my skater need a helmet and face cage?
All CanSkate participants are required to wear a CSA approved hockey helmet. All Pre-Canskate participants must also wear a face cage and it is highly recommended that all Canskate participants also wear a full cage.  Other helmets, such as bicycle helmets, are not allowed on the ice. 
What do we do the first night?
Be sure to check in at the welcome desk the first night so that we can ensure that your child is properly enrolled and fully paid. All skaters must be paid in full prior to joining their lesson. Skaters will receive a name tag that will be collected after each lesson and redistributed the following week. The change room numbers will be posted on the white board next to the welcome table. Be sure your skater has their helmet, mitts and warm clothing without any loose or dangling items. You will be directed to the entry area, which may vary depending on the level of the skaters. Once skaters have stepped on the ice, we ask that all spectators leave the bench area to watch in the lobby or stands. The bench area is strictly for skaters and coaches. Once the lesson has finished, you can meet your skater as they come off the ice. 
Who are the coaches?
All our coaches are certified NCCP-trained professional coaches. They follow the guidelines provided by Skate Canada and Skate Ontario.  They are assisted by trained program assistants, often in our figure skating program or high school / community volunteers. 
How do I know what level to put them in?
Age will help determine the program to register skaters. For those skaters 3-4 years old, they should be registered in PreCanskate.  For those 6 and up, they should be registered into Canskate for any level of skating.  For those 5 year olds, it is up to the parent/guardian to decide if their child is ready for one hour of skating. In both the PreCanskate and the Canskate Program, the coaches will divide the skaters into ability groups on the first night. If you are not able to be there on the first night, it might be a good idea to let the coach know that it is your child's first night so they can be properly assessed. 
My child has been asked to change levels. How do I do that?
At times, the coaches recommend a change to the level of the skater. It usually means a skater might go from PreCanskate to Canskate or Canskate to PreStar. The coaches will inform you of the recommended changes, then it is best to speak to a board member at the welcome table and/or email the club with your child's name and the changes you have agreed to. We will make the change in the system on your behalf. Please note that there may additional fees owed and changes can only be made if there is room in the session. 
My child has never skated before. Can I still put them in Canskate even if they are 9 or 10 years old?
Absolutely!  Canskate welcomes all ability levels and our coaches are trained to teach all levels.  
How do I know what skates to buy?
Hockey or figure skates are both great for learn to skate sessions.  Be sure that the skates fit properly as too big or too small skates can lead to sore feet and tired skaters.  We advise against all plastic skates as they tend to not fit as well as other skates. "Bob" skates or trainers ( with the double blades) are not permitted during our lessons.  More information on fitting skates and where to purchase can be found in our "Clothes, Equipment and Where to Buy" link. 
Where can I watch? Do I need to stay during the lesson?
We ask that all parents/guardians stay for the duration of the lesson. This is to assist skaters if they need to use the washroom or otherwise need to leave the ice.  We ask that all spectators watch from the lobby or the stands. Parents are not permitted to watch from the benches as these are reserved for coaches and skaters. 

What happens during a lesson?

Action, movement and fun!  Lessons are given in a group format with a coach-to-student ratio of a maximum 1:10. Canskate begins with a group warm up and then the skaters divide into 4 colour groups on the ice.  The skaters rotate through 3-4 stations, each with a different skill goal ( balance, control, agility).  Canskate ends with a group cool down activity. Badges, ribbons and other incentives are used to benchmark skaters’ progress and reward effort and participation.

Why do I need to pay the Skate Canada fee? What is it for? 
Our club is a small community run non profit organization committed to providing energetic programs to people of all ages. The fee includes a small administration fee and the compulsory Skate Canada fee for skaters registering in Skate Canada sanctioned clubs. In order to maintain this commitment, our program fees cover the cost for ice and the fees of our wonderful coaches. All skating clubs in Canada following the CanSkate programs charge a Skate Canada fee per participant. This is additional to program fees (as outlined on their website). Our club is charged this fee per skater. The fee is payable once per year per skater. The year for this runs from September 1 to August 31. 
How do I make a payment?
Presently we are set up to accept e-transfer ( the preferred method) and check payments only. We do not accept credit card payments. Fees MUST be paid before skaters can take the ice.  Should you opt to pay by e-transfer please send the payment to the address located on the bottom of the invoice. Be sure to include the name of your skater and the invoice number in the memo section. Checks should be made payable to Acton Skating Club and should include the name of your skater and the invoice number. Checks can be mailed to the following address: 
Acton Skating Club
P.O. Box 17
Acton ON
L7J 2M2
Who do I contact for other inquires?
During most of our sessions, there will be a Welcome Table set up which is usually staffed by our volunteers.  Most questions can be answered by them. Our email for additional inquiries is:


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We look forward to the opportunity to offer Pre-Canskate, CanSkate, PrePower and StarSkate sessions in the 2024/2025 season!
    Skate Canada National Association