About Us

WHO WE ARE

The Canadian Association of Nordic Ski Instructors (CANSI) is a not-for-profit organization to promote and advance the sports of cross country and telemark skiing in Canada through the certification, training and development of nordic ski instructors. CANSI’s teaching approach produces a high-quality learning experience for our members and the skiing public in cross country and telemark skiing.

WHAT WE DO

CANSI is the certifying body for nordic skiing in Canada. We offer four levels of certification in the cross country discipline and three in telemark. Telemark skiing is a downhill style utilizing free-heel bindings and specialized equipment. Advancement through the levels in both areas marks a progression in an individual’s ability to teach more advanced or expert skiers. Although CANSI’s primary focus is certifying instructors to teach the general public, services beyond instructor certification are also available. For more information, click HERE to review our certification course outlines.

HOW WE DO IT

CANSI is the body through which new technical advances in the sport are directed to the learning skier. Each region appoints their national representative through regional elections. To be a member of the national board of directors, an individual must be an active member in good standing with the association and be elected by the region in which they reside.

OUR ORGANIZATION

MANDATE & GOALS

  • To provide a standard of excellence in certified nordic instruction by maintaining a uniform and current level of expertise in nordic skiing and by delivering nationally sanctioned pedagogy to the skiing public.
  • To educate the skiing public to the advantages of instruction in nordic skiing.
  • To maintain a viable and functioning communication network, focusing on technical and pedagogical advancements, which in turn, will provide supportive and stimulating resources to instructors to pass on to the public.
  • To promote and maintain national and international liaison within the nordic disciplines.

ORGANIZATION

CANSI is governed by a Board of Directors made up of one representative from each of the six regions of Canada

  • Pacific - British Columbia and Yukon
  • Mountain - Alberta and Northwest Territories
  • Central - Saskatchewan, Manitoba and Nunavut
  • Ontario
  • Quebec
  • Atlantic - New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island and Newfoundland and Labrador

TECHNICAL COMMITTEE
FUNCTIONS

  • CANSI’s technical committee reports to the national board of directors and is made up of representatives and advisors from each of the six regions in Canada.
  • The technical committee meets by teleconference on a regular basis and once a year in person at the national seminar.
  • On matters that require a vote, each region has one vote, which is cast by the regional representative. The chair of the technical committee does not cast a vote, except to break a tie.
  • Regional technical representatives are responsible for disseminating technical information to their regions through regional briefings and for coordinating regional-level courses (XC Levels I and II and telemark Levels I and II).

TECHNICAL COMMITTEE
RESPONSIBILITIES

  • Develop and advance Canadian cross country and telemark skiing technique and teaching.
  • Establish standards, resources and procedures for the delivery of CANSI technique and training (ski technique, pedagogy, and certification progression).
  • Ensure that CANSI technique and training is delivered in a professional manner.
  • Actively collaborate with the technical groups of other snowsport instructional organizations.
  • Coordinate national level courses (XC Levels III and IV and telemark Level III).

OUR HISTORY

THE EARLY DAYS
In the early 1970s interest in cross country skiing was growing. Instruction programs were developed by the Canadian Ski Association, Canadian Ski Instructors’ Alliance and Ski Quebec, but there were too many roadblocks for any of these associations to develop and maintain a national program. In 1976, the three groups came together to discuss the issue and from this discussion, CANSI was formed.

The parent organizations kept CANSI going until it was ready to stand on its own. In September 1978, with a constitution and a set of bylaws, CANSI elected a board of directors. The board consisted of one CANSI representative from each of the eight constituencies across Canada, plus representatives from each of the parent organizations.

Classic skiing was the traditional cross county technique in the 1970s, and downhill manoeuvres utilized the Christie or alpine technique. These techniques made up our CANSI courses.

1980s
With the introduction of ski skating in the mid-1980s, made popular by US racer Bill Koch, CANSI added skating techniques to its cross country discipline. We started with the marathon or half skate and then added full skating techniques as racers began using them regularly in competition.

The telemark technique was always part of our cross country discipline. We used it to make turns on our cross country skis in deeper snow. As specialized equipment for telemark skiing – skis with metal edges, wider skis and heavier leather boots – became more widely available, people began looking for telemark lessons. In response, CANSI developed a separate telemark certification to train and certify telemark ski instructors. The first certification course was held in 1986 at Sunshine Village, Alberta. Today we have three levels of telemark courses.

TODAY
As the cross country and telemark disciplines evolve and change, so does CANSI, interpreting the way changes in technique or equipment trends should be applied to the way we teach recreational skiers, racers or those looking for the most proficiency in their skiing.

OUR BOARD

NATIONAL BOARD MEMBERS

Denys Lawrence
President, Pacific Region

CANSI member since 2000
XC instructor Level IV, XC course conductor Level II
Telemark instructor Level II
Other ski industry certifications: CSIA, NCCP
Instructor at SilverStar Mountain Resort and Sovereign Lake, B.C.
Backcountry skiing in Swiss Alps, 1985-1989; British Columbia, 1990-present; Japan, 2014

Mario Filion
Vice President, Quebec Region

CANSI member since 2012
Telemark instructor Level III, telemark course conductor Level I
Other ski industry certifications: CSIA Level 3 and Level 1 course conductor; CSCF Level 1, CASI Level 2
Instructor at Ski Bromont, Que.
Owner, Telemark Proshop Filionski

Garry Almond
Acting Treasurer and National Office Manager Ontario Region

CANSI member since 2004
Former president and secretary/treasurer of CANSI
Telemark instructor Level II
Other Ski Industry Certifications: CSIA level 1
Telemark instructor with Ski Telemark Inc.

Michael Thomas
Pacific Regional Representative

CANSI member since 1999
XC instructor Level IV, XC course conductor Level II
Telemark instructor Level II
Other ski industry certifications: CSIA Level 1
Nordic ski school director and trail operations manager at Cypress Mountain, West Vancouver, B.C.

John Heerema

Mountain Regional Representative

CANSI member since 1987
XC instructor Level III
Telemark instructor Level I

Katrina Froese

Central Regional Representative

CANSI member since 2013
XC instructor Level II

Rob Henderson
Ontario Regional Represenative

CANSI member since 1978
XC instructor Level IV, XC course conductor Level II
Telemark instructor Level II, telemark course conductor Level II
Interski demonstration team member, 1987, 1991, 1995, 1998, 2011
Interski head coach in 1998

Gaétan Lord

Quebec Regional Representative

CANSI member since 2007
Telemark instructor Level III
Other Ski Industry Certifications: CSIA level 1

Elita Rahn

Atlantic Regional Representative

CANSI member since 2001
XC instructor Level III, XC course conductor Level I

TECHNICAL COMMITTEE MEMBERS

Rob Henderson
Ontario Telemark Representative, National Technical Committee Chair

CANSI member since 1978
XC instructor Level IV, XC course conductor Level II
Telemark instructor Level II, telemark course conductor Level II
Interski demonstration team member, 1987, 1991, 1995, 1998, 2011
Interski head coach in 1998

Shane Landreville
Pacific Region Technical Representative

CANSI member since 2011
Master nordic instructor: XC instructor Level IV, telemark instructor Level III
XC course conductor Level I
Former manager of nordic skiing at SilverStar Mountain Resort, B.C.
World Cup telemark racer from 2010 to 2014 and national champion in 2012-2013

Henry Madsen
Mountain Region Technical Representative

CANSI member since 1989
XC instructor Level IV, XC course conductor Level IV
Telemark instructor Level I
Involved in racing, skiing and teaching for decades

Ken Schykulski
Central Region Technical Representative

CANSI member since the early 1980s
Technical committee member since 2006
XC instructor Level III, XC course conductor Level I
Other ski industry certifications: CCC Level 1 official and Jackrabbit leader

Wendy Grater
Ontario Region XC Technical Representative

CANSI member since 1990
Course conductor since 2009
Telemark instructor Level I, XC instructor Level IV, XC course conductor Level II

Denis Vézina
Quebec Region Telemark Technical Representative

CANSI member since 2002
Telemark instructor Level III, telemark course conductor Level III
XC instructor Level II
Other ski industry certifications: CSIA Level 4 and course conductor Level 2, FESC Level 2
Instructor at Massif de Charlevoix, Que.
Interski telemark coach 2017-2019
Interski demonstration team member 2019

Marc Ricard
Quebec XC Technical Representative

CANSI member since 2004
XC instructor Level III, XC course conductor Level II
Telemark instructor Level II

Larry White
Atlantic RegionTechnical Representative

CANSI member since 2005
Telemark instructor Level II, telemark course conductor Level II
Telemark coach entry level
XC instructor Level I
Other ski industry certifications: CSIA, CSCF, CCC
Publisher of nstelemark.com

Keep in touch!

CANSI welcomes your questions and ideas. If there is content you would like to see added contact us Here

National Office

Marie Lefebvre
National Office Coordinator

CANSI member since 2018
Snowshoe and winter enthusiast
More than 30 years’ experience in adult education and office administration for non-profit organizations

Françoise Chatenoud
National Office
Advisor

CANSI member since 2009
XC instructor Level III, XC course conductor Level I
Telemark instructor Level I
Mountain skiing in French Alps and Pyrenees, 1985-1988
Volunteer XC ski patroller in Gatineau Park, Que. 1994-1999

Ann Sullivan
National Communications Coordinator

CANSI member since 2013
XC instructor Level I
Other ski industry certifications: NCCP trained in CCI-L2T
Club coach with XC Bragg Creek, Alta. and all-round outdoor and fitness enthusiast.

QUESTIONS?

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