Welcome to the Kitchener-Waterloo Skating Club

Frequently-Asked Questions


Properly fitted skates are a must! We strongly recommend lace-up-skates (not skates fastened with velcro straps, clips or latches) as they are more supportive. Skates must not be sized too large because loose fitting skates do not support the foot and ankle. Figure skates and hockey skates are both acceptable, and the choice should be made depending on your future skating plans. For example, if you might continue on in figure skating, it is preferable to wear figure skates from the start. If you choose figure skates, the toe pick should be intact (not ground off!).

A properly fitted CSA-approved hockey helmet is mandatory for all Learn-to-Skate participants. Helmets designed for other activities--such as bicycle, skateboard or ski helmets--are not permitted. Our helmet policy can be found here.

All skaters are encouraged to wear gloves or mittens, as well as warm and comfortable clothing that allows them to move freely. Clothing should be warm, but skaters should avoid overdressing to prevent overheating as a result of the physical activity involved in learning to skate.


All skaters in our Twin City Hockey Skating School power skating programs (Pre-Power to Power 4) must wear a CSA-approved helmet, face mask (cage), neck guard, shoulder pads, elbow pads, gloves, jersey, pants, jock/jill, shin pads, socks, hockey skates (sharpened), and a hockey stick. A mouth guard is not required, but is recommended. Our helmet policy can be found here.


For daily skate care you will need plastic or rubber "hard guards", fabric "soft guards", an absorbent cloth, and a storage bag.

To prevent damaging the delicate sharp edges of your blades, always wear plastic or rubber "hard guards" when walking off ice. However, skates should never be stored with hard guards installed because they retain moisture, causing the blades to rust and become dull. Instead, wipe your boots, soles and blades dry using an absorbent cloth after each use, and protect the blades from damage in your bag with cloth blade guards. These will prevent nicks and will absorb condensation that forms on cold blades. When you get home, skates should be removed from your bag and allowed to dry at room temperature to prevent moisture from damaging the boot leather and sole. If you will not be using your skates for several weeks, you can prevent rust by coating the blades with a thin layer of oil or other lubricant such as WD-40.


Blades should be sharpened when they lose their ability to grip the ice and slide sideways too easily. The time between sharpenings varies considerably depending on the quality of the blade, how you skate, and how you care for your blades. For example, walking on concrete without blade guards will make it necessary to sharpen your blades immediately. But as a general guide properly maintained high quality figure skate blades should be sharpened after about 20-30 hours of use. Blades made of softer steel likely require more frequent sharpening.

Figure skate blades should only be sharpened by a skilled person who understands the special requirements of figure skate blades. An experienced figure skate technician can be found in Waterloo at the RIM Park Skate Shop.

Technical information about figure skate blades can be found here.


The CanSkate program is structured in a grid-format, consisting of the development of six fundamental movements: GO forward, GO backwards, STOP, TURN, SPIN and JUMP organized in six stages of learning. The skills are arranged in progressions, from very simple to the more complex. Each stage has a primary focus. Once the skills on each stage are mastered, a badge is awarded. The names of the badges are: Stage 1 Balance, Stage 2 Glide Forward, Stage 3 Glide Backward, Stage 4 Edges, Stage 5 Power, and Stage 6 Speed.

Fundamental Movement Stage 1 Balance Stage 2 Glide Fwd Stage 3 Glide Bkwd Stage 4 Edges Stage 5 Power Stage 6 Speed  Award
Go-forward  ___  ___  ___  ___  ___  ___ Go-forward
Go-backward  ___  ___  ___  ___  ___  ___ Go-backward
Stop  ___  ___  ___  ___  ___  ___ Stop
Turn  ___  ___  ___  ___  ___  ___ Turn
Spin  ___  ___  ___  ___  ___  ___ Spin
Jump  ___  ___  ___  ___  ___  ___ Jump
Award Stage 1 Balance Stage 2 Glide Fwd Stage 3 Glide Bkwd Stage 4 Edges Stage 5 Power Stage 6 Speed Award 
Optional Challenge Skills              

Skaters may also progress horizontally across the grid and complete fundamental movements.

Completing the entire fundamental movement, "STOP" for example, will earn them the STOP badge. Coaches also use ribbons and special treats for different occasions.

At the bottom of each Stage is a series of optional challenge skills. The challenge is in the learning and performing of these skills for fun. They can also be used to identify talented skaters.

Detailed information about CanSkate ribbons and badges can be found here.



Latest News

2017 Annual Report:
All KWSC members are encouraged to read our 2017 annual report for information on club activities this past year.

STAR and COMP Registration:

Online registration for all STAR and Competitive programs is now open. All summer STAR and Competitive programs will be sold by the week. Info..

Summer 2017 learn-to-skate and power skating registration:

Online registration for summer 2017 learn-to-skate and power skating programs is now open. Info...


Jun. 11, 2017:

KWSC Annual General Meeting & Awards Gala.

  Notice of meeting
  Notice of election
  Director biographies
  Voting eligibility info

Jun. 22, 2017:

Test Day

Jun. 25, 2017:
Skating Seminar featuring Gabby Daleman

We are K-W's exclusive provider of Skate Canada certified skating programs such as CanSkate and CanPowerSkate.


CanSkate was developed by a team of hockey, figure skating, and ringette experts to teach the fundamentals of skating. CanSkate is the only nationally regulated learn-to-skate program in Canada. This tested and proven new curriculum and delivery method promotes unrivaled development of strong basic skills. The new program includes specific skills that pertain to hockey, ringette, speed skating and figure skating. The result is a fun and dynamic program that prepares all skaters for virtually every ice sport.


True Sport

True Sport



Copyright - Kitchener-Waterloo Skating Club - | site administration
Website photos/videos courtesy of Danielle Earl Photography, One for the Wall Photography, and Skate Canada