Program Assistants with the Thunder Bay Skating Academy
If interested in volunteering with our program please fill out the following survey or contact our Skating Programs Coordinator at for more information!

What is a Program Assistant?


Program assistants (PAs) are individuals who have been trained by a CanSkate coach to assist in the delivery of the CanSkate program.

Program assistants may be drawn from a number of different groups of people including:
• Current skaters at the club
• Former skaters
• Skaters from other sports (hockey, ringette, speed skating)

Program assistants should be:
• Good communicators and demonstrators
• Enthusiastic
• Team players and good role models
• Responsible
• Punctual
• Patient
• Prepared and organized
• Able to lead groups, encourage skaters and offer praise
• Able to keep skaters moving while having fun

Program Assistants Role

A PA’s role may include:

• Assisting or leading warm-ups, group activities or cool-downs
• Assisting with the set up of circuits and stations
• Leading circuits and rotations
• Demonstrating proper execution of skating skills
• Providing assistance to skaters who may have additional needs• Taking attendance
• Timing speed skills
• Providing general assistance to the coaches on the session
• Providing encouragement and general feedback to skaters
• Assisting with tracking of skill acquisition


A PA’s role does not include:

• Delivering lessons at a designated teachingstation
• Instructing skills
• Assessing skills

Our Program


Full perimeter skating, both directions forwards and backwards with dynamic stretching to keep skaters moving. 

Lesson time

3 to 6 groups on the ice (Purple, Red, Blue, Green, Black and Yellow. Purple Group is Pre-CanSkate and will need help getting to their lesson area during warm-up. The remaining groups will start where their group flag is. There are 3 stations on the ice, Balance, Agility and Control and g roups will rotate roughly every 10 mins (clockwise). 

Group activity

For example: YMCA Led by Program Assistants in the centre of the ice



For Example:  Believe = full perimeter, long strokes, long glides on one foot, moving stretches like drags, toe touches, side stretches, big arm circles with deep breaths, etc.