Cross Country (XC) Skiing Programs

At Foothills Nordic, we’re passionate about cross-country skiing. We thrive on being active outdoors in winter, we enjoy the challenge of improving our technique and we love the warm friendships we form in the Nordic community. Foothills Nordic offers instruction in classic and skate techniques for all ages. Programs are offered in a variety of locations in Calgary and the surrounding region.

Program Framework ‘Sport for Life’

Foothills Nordic Ski Club programs are aligned with Sport Canada’s Sport for Life model and are designed to meet the physical, mental, emotional and cognitive developmental needs of participants. Sport for Life emphasizes the importance of sport in children’s development, as well as for the health and well being of all Canadians.

The key feature of Sport for Life is the Long Term Athlete Development model. The LTAD is an 8 stage-model based on the physical, mental, emotional and cognitive development of children and adolescents. Each stage reflects a different point in athlete development.

All Foothills programming as well as competitive events are aligned with the LTAD model. This means you can be assured that Foothills programs are carefully matched to the participants’ physical, mental and emotional stage of development.


Our children’s programs focus on the FUNdamentals of cross-country skiing. Through the delivery of Cross Country Canada’s Bunny and Jackrabbit programs Foothills Nordic offers children a fun way to learn cross-country skiing from great youth and adult coaches! Our goal is to instill in children a love of cross-country skiing and winter outdoor activity.

Ages 4-5

  • Bunnies

    Bunny sessions are focused on “ski-play” as children learn movement on cross country skis and develop basic motor skills through participation in games and activities and having FUN

Ages 6-10

  • Jackrabbits

    Jackrabbits will acquire basic ski skills while developing agility, balance, coordination and speed with an emphasis on FUN and participation! Jackrabbits develop through a progressive skill program following the Cross Country Canada Jackrabbit model.

  • Jackrabbits-Plus

    Jackrabbits Plus is designed for kids with an interest in skiing more than once a week. This program follows the Cross Country Canada Jackrabbit model to prepare for Track Attack.


Our youth programs train in Calgary during the week and often venture into the mountains on weekends. Youth Group (T1, T2, and LC) continues to develop overall fitness and ski skills by providing a mix of both recreational and competitive experiences. It’s a transitional program for 12-19 year olds where athletes develop a strong background in ski technique from which they can continue to develop their ski skill/recreational interests and/or more competitive goals. We use the Cross Country Canada (CCC) long term athlete development model (LTAD) as a guide in implementing our training sessions. Teen Ski is a recreational program that builds on the fitness and technique base acquired in T1 and T2 in a fun, easy going environment. LC (Learn to Compete) is a comprehensive, year round training program that allows athletes to meet their competitive or non-competitive sport and fitness goals.

 Ages 10-13

  • Marmots

    The Marmots program is intended for youth who are interested in skiing for fun, fitness and friendship. Includes group ski sessions to develop and improve on skills attained in the Jackrabbit program.

  • Track Attack

    As a progression from the Jackrabbit program, Track Attack is a skill development program aimed at improving skate and classic techniques in a fun and social environment. Track Attack will promote teamwork and personal interaction skills.

  • Train to Train 1

    As a progression from the Track Attack program, Train to Train 1 is the next stage in Cross Country Canada’s Long Term Development Framework. It is aimed at improving skate and classic techniques in a fun and social environment. Skiers are encouraged to participate in competition and will be able to race many times during the season.

Ages 14-19

  • T2 / LC – XC

    Train to Train 2 (T2) and Learn to Compete (LC) is for athletes seeking improvement and refinement in XC skiing. Training sessions and workout modes are specifically catered to meet different athlete needs depending on their development.

  • Teen Ski

    Teen Ski is intended for skiers aged 14+ with prior nordic experience who are interested in skiing for fun, fitness and friendship.


Adults looking for intense and technical year round training can join Masters, a program focused on technique refinement and intense conditioning.  This is a perfect program for people looking to take their skiing to the next level.  While many Masters chose to race loppets and local races there is no pressure to compete.  The program includes an 11-month training plan plus on-line training diaries are used by the athletes and monitored by the coach.

Adults looking for a less intense program focusing more on technique and skill improvement (but still providing a fitness workout) can join Ski Fitness or Foothills Adult Ski Technique (F.A.S.T.).  Ski Fitness is ideal for people looking to train during the day while F.A.S.T. runs in the evenings, concurrently with the FNSC youth programs.  Ski Fitness combines dry land and on-snow training and F.A.S.T. offers on-snow training with the option of adding fall dry-land training.

  • Masters

    The Masters Training Group (MTG) is for adults who desire a cross-country ski training program with instruction for both skate and classic techniques.

  • 55+ Women

    Women’s 55+ XC ski class offered by Foothills Nordic Ski Club strives to follow the goals of Physical Literacy in the delivery of the program. The classes are structured to include some instruction, some free skiing time and social time, which includes a coffee stop after the class.

  • Ski Fitness

    Ski Fitness is an adult program coached by passionate and qualified Masters athletes/instructors. Sessions focus on fitness and improving classic and skate techniques – giving participants the skills and fitness to ski effortlessly!


Foothills Nordic reserves the right to reconfigure programs based on the numbers and skill levels of the subscribers.  Programs may be limited to a specific number of participants. There may be multiple groups within each level depending on how many athletes sign up for each level.  Within a level, groups will be structured based on ability and skier chemistry.

Sessions missed due to inclement weather will be made up at the coaches’ discretion.

There is no guarantee to the number of nights that the programs will run.  Typically we are able to get 8-10 weeks in during the December-March period.  Sessions may be be cancelled due to lack of snow, temperatures below -20c, and conflicts with racing schedules.


If you are unsure which program is best suited to you or if you have questions, please email our Club Coach.