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Sportsmanship & Practice Protocols

We like to think that our sport, and our Club, uphold high standards of sportsmanship. Certainly, it does not feature some of the poor sportsmanship rampant in other sports. However, there is always room for improvement. To help facilitate improvement, we want to inform members of those principles to which we strive to adhere - Principles of Fair Play. In addition to the Club's Principles of Fair Play, all Speed Skaters are held to the Code of Conduct policies and statesments for Speed Skating Alberta and Speed Skating Canada.

Principles of Fair Play

  • Respect for officials and their decisions
  • Respect for ourselves, competitors, and teammates
  • Respect for the rules of the game/competition
  • Maintenance of dignity for all participants at all times
  • Equal opportunity for all to participate

What do these principles mean in practice?

  • Cheering on teammates
  • Helping when asked by parents and / or coaches
  • Ensuring that discussions with coaches regarding performance are conducted in private. Disputes with coaches in front of other skaters are poor sportsman behaviour and will not be tolerated.
  • Not insulting each other or yourself
  • Giving your best effort each and every time
  • Being good sportsmen and setting a good example in front of skaters from other clubs (i.e.: not trashing them)
  • Consistently arriving to practice ready to skate and on time
  • Saying thank you to volunteers
  • Helping put up and take down mats
  • When asked, giving constructive feedback instead of negative feedback
  • Setting realistic goals for yourself
  • Ensuring disputes are handled in a respectful manner, and made only through official coaches
  • Balancing fun with achievement

Practice Protocols: Safety First!

One of the ways in which we can reduce the chance of injury is by following certain “rules of the rink” during practices and meets. These rules exist to encourage a safe, productive, and enjoyable experience for all. Please ensure that your skaters are familiar with these Protocols and with Sportsmanship prior to skating.

  • At the short track rink, safety mats must be in place around the ice to protect skaters if they fall and/or slide into the boards. Parents are asked to help set up and take down the protective mats at each practice. NOTE: skaters cannot skate until these mats are in place. It would be greatly appreciated if all parents would spend a few minutes doing this at each practice thereby ensuring that the kids get as much ice time as possible.
  • A coach must always be on the ice when members are skating.
  • All skaters, both competitive and recreational, are expected to follow directions given by the coaches. Failure to do so can and will result in the skater being asked to leave the ice surface.
  • All skaters must skate counter-clockwise unless the coaches direct otherwise.
  • On the skating track, the fastest skaters have the outside lane and the slower skaters have the inside lane. Where appropriate, fast skaters should try to let slower skates know when they are passing by shouting “track”.
  • When skating on the track, skate in a consistent pattern. If you wish to stop or rest, stand up and glide carefully to the centre of the ice. Do not stop suddenly or cut across the track. Do not stand on the track. Do not block the track in any way.
  • The safest place to be is at the centre of the ice.
  • Skaters must NEVER stand against the boards, and especially against the mats, as a falling skater may crash into them. This is where serious injury can occur.
  • If you must leave the ice, first tell the coach. Extreme caution must be used when crossing the track: stop, look, and then when safe, cross the track quickly.
  • Deliberately falling and sliding across the ice or pushing skaters is dangerous to others and will result in disciplinary action.
  • Please tighten skates and use the bathroom before coming onto the ice.
  • As a courtesy to others, all skaters must be prompt in getting on the ice, so the coach can follow his or her coaching plan without waiting for tardy skaters.
The following behaviours and actions will not be tolerated:
  • bullying
  • yelling at officials
  • cheating
  • taking performance-enhancing substances

Certainly, we all have bad days and we all make poor decisions at times. However, we must all strive to create an environment that is welcoming, inclusive, and supportive. If you ever want to talk about some of these items please seek out one of the coaches or a Club Executive member.

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