Biathlon Bears

Program Description

Biathlon Bears is a three-level progressive skills development program for youth ages 10-13.

The goal of the program is to continuously develop and refine skiing and shooting skills in a safe and fun environment through a combination of drills, games and relays, and to provide an introduction to an active, outdoor sport-for-life.

Biathlon Bears is for young athletes in the FUNdamentals and Learn to Train developmental stages of the Canadian Sport for Life Long Term Athlete Development Model. Biathlon Bears leads into our Development Team program or our Teen Leadership program.

Parent involvement is a required part of our Biathlon Bears program. This requirement can be fulfilled by helping with coaching, doing setup/takedown at practices, volunteering at events, or by assisting with the administration of the program.

Parents who are interested in coaching or volunteering at events are encouraged to take a Silver Coach workshop and an Entry Level Officials Course through the Whistler Biathlon Society.

Registration Prerequisites

In order to participate in our Biathlon Bears program, you must meet the following prerequisites:

– membership with the Sea to Sky Nordics (click here to register)
– registration with Biathlon Canada as a “Recreational Athlete” (click here to register)
– no biathlon or shooting experience is required, but prior participation in a biathlon camp, recreational biathlon race or demo day is recommended
– at least one season of cross country skiing experience is required for all levels of Biathlon Bears

Program Levels

The three levels of the program are called Black Bears, Grizzly Bears, and Polar Bears.

Athletes will be assigned into one of the three different levels based on their experience, ability, personal goals, and approach to training.

Black Bears is the entry level for our biathlon program. At this level the goal is to develop existing skiing skills while acquiring basic shooting skills. All participants without prior shooting experience will begin at the Black Bears level.

Grizzly Bears is the next level for experienced biathletes. At this level the goal is to continue to develop skiing skills while consolidating basic shooting skills. At least two years of skiing experience and one year in Black Bears, Young Vikings or equivalent shooting experience is a prerequisite for the Grizzly Bears level.

Polar Bears is for advanced skiers who are passionate about Biathlon and consider it their primary winter sport activity. This level is for young athletes who are interested in progressing to our Development Team. This level is designed to develop and refine skiing skills including speed, power and aerobic fitness, strength and flexibility, and to develop a solid foundation of basic shooting skills for progressing to the Development Team.

2019-2020 Winter Schedule and Dates

This winter, the Biathlon Bears program offers training sessions on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Saturdays. For those athletes who want to train on Sundays, we are offering a multi-sport program that includes biathlon training.

In the winter, we recommend that Biathlon Bears ski once on weekends and at least one during the week.

For those who are interested in a Biathlon Bears program on Sundays, this winter we are offering biathlon training through our new Young Vikings multi-sport program.

Dates: Dec 7-Mar 7 (13 sessions – no practice on Dec 28)
Time: 9:30-15:30
Location: Whistler Olympic Park
Activities: skiing and shooting training.

Dates: Dec 10-Mar 3 (11 sessions – no practice on Dec 24 or 31)
Time: 17:30-19:00
Locations: Lost Lake
Activities: Skiing only, no shooting training.

Dates: (Dec 11-Mar 4 (11 sessions – no practice on Dec 25 or Jan 1)
Two times/locations to choose from:
Cypress 18:30-20:00
Whistler Olympic Park 17:00-18:30
Activities: Skiing only, no shooting training.

Program Fees

Program fees cover coaching, lane fees, ammunition, and use of club biathlon rifles.

Trail passes are not included in the program fee.

$52.50 discount season passes to Whistler Olympic Park and Lost Lake can be purchased in connection with program registration.

Saturdays: $500
Tuesdays: $100
Wednesdays: $100


Equipment Required

Participants are required to provide their own ski equipment (skis, boots, poles), for both skate and classic skiing techniques.

Equipment rentals are available through Whistler Olympic Park, Cypress, and local ski shops.

Participants should come to practice prepared for the weather conditions with multiple sets of pants, jackets, gloves, and hats. At least 3 pairs of gloves and 3 jackets are recommended in wet weather!

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