Learn-to-Ski Jackrabbit Program (age 4 to 10)

jackrabbitphotoLearning to cross-country ski starts as early as 4 years old for those interested and runs from January to March each year.   The Bunnyrabbit Program is for children 4 to 5 years old.  The Jackrabbit Program is designed for children ages 5 up to 10.  They are ideal for those who want to learn to ski and are all about developing ski technique and enjoyment of being on skis gliding along. Thinking ahead, after acquiring ski skills through Jackrabbits, children move into either Adventure programs (Mini) or Racing programs (Atom) and can start to consider Biathlon at around age 10.


* Eight weeks of official lessons over the course of ten weeks

* Location : Relais de Plein Air with heated chalet, cafe, and tons of new snow features!

* Jamboree is the end of season on-snow party for everyone and the date will be announced in the fall
* If you still have questions after reading below, please contact Nick Anning who is coordinating this program.  He is at chelseal2ski@gmail.com  

The Jackrabbit and Bunnyrabbit programs are parent-volunteer based. The participants learn skiing skills through games and activities on skis. Classes are offered once a week on Saturdays or Sundays. Parent volunteers act as coaches and coordinators. If you are interested in coaching or coordinating please contact the Jackrabbit Program Coordinator. Becoming an active volunteer helps you become a member of the ski community that your family can become part of.

I’m taking the time to express how thrilled we have been with our experience with Chelsea Nordiq!! My son loved his lessons. He loved his coach! I enjoyed how parents could get involved during the lessons and I thought the games were perfectly thought out and age appropriate! - Noah's Mum
For more experienced skiers wanting more challenge, consider the Track Attack Atoms program for children aged 8-9.

The last lesson for all levels is at the Ski Jamboree which takes place in March. Both Saturday and Sunday groups are invited to attend on the same day for a wind-up event full of fun and games.

Additional Program Information and levels

The Bunnyrabbit Program is a Cross Country Canada skill development program. It is designed to introduce children four and five years of age to the sport of cross country skiing and the healthy lifestyle associated with it. A cross country ski experience will:
• help children develop a positive self-image;
• be fun;
• provide children an opportunity to make friends with other skiers;
• develop skills;

With a focus on fun, children will work on the basics of cross-country skiing while playing on various terrain and exploring longer skis as appropriate.  Only classic ski technique will be taught in Jackrabbit 1 and 2. Levels 3 & 4 will continue to focus on fun, games and ski exploration with an introduction to the skating technique.  They will eventually require both skating length poles and classic length poles.  Not sure about skis and wax?  Be sure to look for the Ski Swap information this Fall. When selecting the appropriate level for your child (or to volunteer as a coach/assistant) consider the following techniques that will be explored.

Bunnyrabbit skills: rising and falling, side-stepping, free glide, snowplow, games
Jackrabbit 1 skills: falling and rising, side-stepping, star turn, diagonal stride, herringbone, free glide, snowplow braking
Jackrabbit 2 skills: snowplow stop, double poling, kick turn, snowplow turn, free glide, herringbone, diagonal stride
Jackrabbit 3 skills: diagonal stride, double poling, one step double pole, free skate, downhill tuck, diagonal skate, skate turn, kick turn
Jackrabbit 4 skills: free stake, one step double pole, one skate, two skte, step turn, parallel side slipping, offset


More information about the Jackrabbit program can be found at SFQ or Cross Country Canada (Bunnyrabbits and Jackrabbits)


Season and Lesson Start Times

For Bunny and Jackrabbits: First lesson occurs at the beginning of January and typically a season lasts 8 sessions, depending on snow.
Bunnyrabbit and Jackrabbitrun on Saturday or Sunday.  Refer to our registration page for times .

Length of Lesson
Bunnyrabbit :1 hour
Jackrabbit Level 1: 1 to 1.5 hours
Jackrabbit level 2: 2 hours
Jackrabbit level 3: 2 hours
Jackrabbit level 4: 2 hours

Please arrive 10 minutes early. Please arrive on time to pick up your child at the end of the session.

Registration & Fees

Registration for the season will begin late August. A mandatory club membership fee is charged in addition to the registration fees except for families with only Bunny or Jackrabbit participants. Full fee and registration information can be found on our programs page.
Please note: every year, the Chelsea Nordiq Jackrabbit and Bunnyrabbit programs often have more subscribers than spots available. In addition, once registration opens, spots fill up very quickly. Please sign up early to avoid disappointment. This year, registration priority will be assigned as follows:

  1. Families in which one or more parent volunteers to be a group leader or committee member
  2. Date of registration.


The Jackrabbit coaches and coordinators are volunteers and we need as many as possible to keep groups manageable and fun. Each group requires one coach and an assistant.  Please indicate that you are interested on the registration form.  Chelsea Nordiq provides coaching certification in the Fall and lesson plans.  Parents are normally required to accompany their child’s class and to provide a nut-free snack and drinks for all the children to share once during the season.

Selecting a Level

In order for your children to improve their cross country skiing and advance their skills, they must enjoy themselves. Integral to this goal is selecting the correct level.  This will be done at the beginning of the sessions in a fun and relaxed way.

Changing Levels

If after discussing with your child’s instructor you’d like to change their level, please contact the JR coordinator.

Language of Instruction

Chelsea Nordiq Jackrabbits makes every effort to offer classes in both English and French, but this is subject to the language skills of our volunteer Leaders and Assistant Leaders. Please indicate on the registration each language that your child speaks and understands well enough to participate in a class in that language. The number of children seeking French instruction is often very high, but we cannot guarantee that classes will be offered in both English and French at all levels. Please be careful not to overestimate your child’s skill level in their second language as it is frustrating for a child who cannot fully understand their Leader’s guidance. If you can volunteer and speak French we would love to hear from you!

Under which conditions is the practice canceled?

All programs will be canceled if the coordinator deems the trails are dangerous due to hardening from freezing rain or if there is no snow.
A level may be canceled if the projected temperature is colder than –15° C (before wind chill)  and the coordinator will send out an email by approximately 10.30 am on the day of the session

Level Cancellation Details
Bunnyrabbit, Jackrabbit Level 1 and Level 2 Classes are canceled if the projected temperature is colder than –15° C (before wind chill).
Jackrabbit Level 3 and Level 4 Between –15° C and –20° C, the leader decides whether to cancel.

Below –20° C (before wind chill), it’s mandatory to cancel the class.

Refund Policy

As per club policy, the club fee is non-refundable. For cancellations received before December 1, 100% of the program fee will be refunded. For cancellations received after December 1 50% of the program will be refunded. Cancellations received after the first class will not be refunded

Equipment & Clothing

A single pair of skis (classic) is sufficient although JR 4 may also prefer to test skate-specific skis and boots.
Your children should be dressed for the weather so that they can stay outside for the duration of the lesson. It is better to be overdressed and to shed a few layers during the class than to be underdressed and frozen. Favor mittens over gloves. A mitten allows all fingers to work together to stay warm.