I will never be an NHL player

I didn’t want to go. I tried to drop out. “Listen, guys,” I said. “I’m ready to admit it. I will never be an NHL player; I will never make it to the Olympics.”

Week three was too hard. Coach Chase, our Programs Manager, refused to let me use a skate aid. I was forced to be on my feet for the whole 50 minutes. My only rests were spent sitting or laying (sometimes rolling) on the ice. But even after explaining why I wanted to quit, Chase refused to let me (just like how he refused to let me have a skate aid the week prior!). So, I laced up my skates, put on my helmet, and made my way over to the Players Bench ready for Week 4 to begin. Mohamed was on the bench; he was very happy to see us.

In fact, in thinking back over the last three weeks, Mohamed has always been happy, positive, and has more determination than I have ever seen in another Canadian Zombie. I asked Mohamed why he was taking skating lessons, thinking that perhaps he was planning on playing in the NHL as well. He explained that, in India, where he was born, there were very few ice rinks, and so he never had an opportunity to learn to skate. He and a friend from work would like to play hockey eventually, and these lessons were the first step (or glide) in that direction.

Mohamed and I (and the rest of our class) went onto the ice with Coach Daniel as our instructor. It was difficult, but I was able to put to good use some of the things I've learned over the last three weeks, and I felt a little more confident when class was over. After class, I told Mohamed that, once we were done all our skating lessons, we could join ASHL 101 together. That program would teach us how to play hockey, and then maybe we could even create a co-ed team. These, of course, are long-term goals -- but perhaps more attainable than my original goals of making the NHL or to the Olympics.

By Kristal Kobold Thursday, February 13, 2020 10:08:55 AM Categories: #AnythingForHockey #Canlancamps #experiences #ice

Week two of Adult Learn to Skate  

Canadian Zombies

For the second time I strapped on my son’s helmet and skates and waited with my class for the Zamboni to finish up its last lap of the rink. This time out we have a new instructor: Coach Jigar. "Kristal," he says. "There are no skate aids in my class." This guy is off his rocker. No skate aid? Crazy talk.

Coach Jigar wouldn't budge on the skate aid thing. And, actually, that was okay! Although I needed many breaks, he was able to teach us how to stand up on our own from the ground; how to skate in tiny steps; and even teach us how to glide a bit. We were slow, but we were all doing it! Seven grown adults marching with little baby steps across the ice, arms outstretched in front of us like a pack of Canadian zombies.

Why are we doing this? A question I have been asking myself since last week. I decided it was time to find out. While I was marching along, I asked one of my fellow zombies why on earth she would sign up for this class?

About five months ago, Zenith and her husband welcomed their second child into the world. While on maternity leave, Zenith thought she would take her three-year-old daughter out and learn something new. Zenith and her family are from the Philippines originally, and skating is just not something they do there. No one in her family has been skating before.

After deciding what their great adventure would be, Zenith signed herself and her daughter up for a "parent 'n' tot" course at the local rink. That class only lasted one day. She didn’t realize that the parent needed to be able to skate in order to help their tot. Not wanting to give up, though, they signed up for Canlan's Adult Learn to Skate and Preschool Learn to Skate -- same day, same time, and even same pad. Now Zenith and her daughter get to learn how to skate side-by-side. Admittedly, her preschooler is picking it up much faster than either her mom or I. She may make it to the Olympics just slightly before we do.

By Kristal Kobold Wednesday, January 29, 2020 4:37:31 AM Categories: #Canlancamps

Canlan Camps - Giving The Gift Of An Experience  

Experience is Everything

There are so many times when you want to do something special for your children but giving material things sometimes gets to be too much. These days, our kids have so many games, so many toys, so much clothing. What else could we possibly give them that wouldn’t just add to the clutter, or be put down and forgotten when the new shine wears off. The answer is experiences. Every experience teaches us new things. Our kids learn and grow through experiences. They gain knowledge, skills and confidence. Most importantly, they get to keep the experience with them. adding to a lifetime of memories.


There is no greater gift you can give a child than an experience. Toys break, clothing goes out of style (or out of size), games lose pieces. Eventually, all will be replaced. Experiences, however, never break, you never outgrow them, they are never replaced; they openly add to a lifetime of memories.


At Canlan Ice Sports, we are very lucky to play a part of our camper’s experiences. We get to see their personalities and confidence grow as their skating abilities and hockey skills develop. We’re proud to provide the place where their experience is everything.



By Kristal Kobold Wednesday, August 21, 2019 5:11:28 AM Categories: #AnythingForHockey #Canlancamps #experiences #ice CanlanCamps experiences Ice