Active Start is where it all begins. Participants are of pre-school age and this is the stage where children are learning to move. Children in this stage should learn how to run, jump, throw, catch, kick, float, glide and slide. Most of these skills can be parent led and be done in a local park, rink or even in your backyard. In the latter half of this stage, structured Learn to Skate programs are a great way to learn basic skating skills.
There are no speed skating specific programs for participants in the Active Start stage of development. Programs that are offered by speed skating clubs are focused on learning to skate and do not require long blade skates to participate. If the local speed skating club does not offer a learn to skate program, participants are encouraged to participate in Skate Canada's CANskate program or a learn to skate program offered by your local municipality.
An early active start enhances development of brain function, physical coordination, gross motor skills, and posture and balance. An active start also helps children to build confidence, social skills, emotional control, and imagination while reducing stress and improving sleep.