That’s excellent ice!
Curling Canada’s Revamped Ice Technician Program ready for rollout in 2023-24
All Canadian curlers deserve excellent curling ice. After two years of planning and preparation, Curling Canada is launching its new Ice Technician Program.
The program revitalizes and enhances the training provided to ice technicians nationwide and ensures Canadian ice conditions remain the gold standard, from recreational play to high-performance competition.
“We understand how important it is to train high-quality ice technicians to support the needs of member centres across the country. Curling centres are realizing the quality of the ice in their curling facilities is key to creating a positive and exceptional experience for curlers at all levels and abilities. Ultimately, everyone deserves great ice,” said Curling Canada’s Ice Technician Certification Manager Don Powell.
The new Ice Technician Program focuses on two ice-making streams: Curling Centre and Competition.
The Curling Centre Ice Technician stream starts with training to become an Assistant Curling Ice Technician. This role is earned through a one-day in-person workshop and is suitable for volunteers and other assistants who work under the guidance of a Curling Ice Technician.
An Assistant Curling Ice Technician is trained in the basic duties of maintaining curling ice which include scraping, pebbling, nipping, temperature monitoring, opening/closing/draw change procedures, and basic troubleshooting.
Assistant Curling Ice Technicians (and other ice makers who gain experience in the craft via other methods) can train to become Curling Ice Technicians by completing a program focusing on theoretical or practical ice installations. The programs can be completed in person or through a hybrid online and in-person approach.
In the Curling Ice Technician program, Ice Technicians will be educated on what makes good ice, curling centre safety, refrigeration plant operation, water quality, floors, installation and removal, paint/logo techniques, stone maintenance, environmental management, and more. Completion of the training will give the Ice Technician “Trained” Curling Ice Technician status.
Ice technicians can become “Certified” Curling Ice Technicians by completing an online examination, Safe Sport training, and a successful in-person or video evaluation.
“Ice Technicians are key responsible adults within curling centres who have visibility of the daily training environment, ensuring they are educated about Safe Sport and will further help protect participants and Member Curling facilities have assurance that Ice Technicians certified within our program have completed this important education,” said Curling Canada’s NCCP & Safe Sport Consultant Jennifer Ferris.
The new Ice Technician Program also provides a clear path to ice techs with aspirations of making and managing ice at major national and international championships. After completing the Curling Ice Technician requirements, ice technicians must complete a five-day in-person training course to become a Competition Ice Technician.
In association with its Member Associations, Curling Canada piloted the new Ice Technician Program in seven provinces during the 2022-23 season, with over 230 ice technicians taking the courses.
“We’re pleased to be able to use Curling Canada’s learning management system, learn.curling.ca, to house training materials in both English and French. The online system makes it easier to keep materials current and will help Member Associations reduce costs, as no printing and shipping is required. This is one small change we can make and contribute to Curling Canada’s Environmental, Social, and Governance Strategy,” said Dustin Mikush, Manager, Youth & Program Development.
Please contact your Provincial/Territorial Member Association to register for a course today.
To ask questions about Curling Canada’s Ice Technician Program, please email [email protected].