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Men and Women’s Open • Apr 23 at Conestoga College’s Athletic Centre • Register your team at


Hespeler Minor Softball wants you to be involved!


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Submitted by Lyndsay Koivisto, HMSA Vice President The Hespeler Minor Softball Association (HMSA) is a non-profit, volunteer organization dedicated to the promotion of citizenship and sportsmanship in the Cambridge community. Founded in 1976, and incorporated in January of 1985, the HMSA has been proudly serving Cambridge and the Waterloo Region for nearly as long as there has been a Cambridge to serve. Every year, we are thankful for the support we get from our local community through the families, generous sponsors, volunteer coaches, assistants, convenors, board members and, of course, the many players. Without their support, hard work and dedication, our organization would never have lasted this long. This year, we are looking for additional help to push HMSA forward into the future.

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MAR/APR 2017

baseball including teamwork, communication, determination, resiliency, inclusion, support and courage. We would love to see this division become a large, expanding and thriving division with several teams and age groups. The Jays Care Foundation and Challenger Baseball are providing support and training to get the division up and running as well as the specific equipment needed for our diverse team of players. However, for this adaptive program to become a reality, we need coaches and buddies as well as a coordinator who is passionate about reaching out to children and youth of all ability levels.

THE LINEUP COMMUNITY 05 | 2015 Athlete of the Year nominees include Hoffman, Benesch and Varga 11 | KWICG History 16 | Hosting help is just a call away 21 | CARL Spring/Summer 2017 community adult recreation leagues 22 | Physical health is only half of the story DIVING 16 | Canadian diving year round GOLF 04 | GCC adds 3 more programs for junior golfers HEALTH & FITNESS 09 | The Unravelled Self Gyrotonic 14 | Positive results at EuroFit

Ball clinics

We’re looking for: Players (ages 3 to 18). Coaches and assistants — no experience necessary. We’re here to support you! Convenors for every division. Umpires, both new and returning. An event coordinator to plan special events. A sponsorship coordinator to help ensure that all teams get sponsored. A photographer.

New adaptive division We are joining forces this year with the Jays Care Foundation and the Challenger Baseball program in order to offer an adaptive baseball program designed specifically to empower children and youth living with cognitive and/or physical disabilities. The program is designed to teach children and youth the core life-skills inherent to


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This year, we are introducing free clinics for anyone interested in coaching for the 2017 season and/ or players interested in improving their playing skills. Teaching these clinics will be Brad McConnell, HMSA’s new Player and Coach Development Coordinator. Clinics will be held at Centennial Public School at 100 Weaver St., from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m., on March 20, 27, April 3, 10 and 24. Please email if interested.

HOCKEY 08 | It takes a community... 16 | Skills Plus Hockey Tip #10 SOFTBALL 03 | Hespeler Minor Softball wants you to be involved! 13 | Kitchener Minor Girls Softball Association 2017 Recreational Season SPEED SKATING 17 | Trainer Johnathan Abbott keeps the Cobras in Mint Conditioning all season

HMSA contact information You can register online now, and receive our early-bird pricing, at, or in person at Zehrs in Hespeler on March 25 from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m., or the Cambridge Center Kiosk outside The Bay on March 26 and April 1 from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m.

SWIMMING 12 | The Dean Boles Invitational Swim Meet is a huge success 18 | Update from KW Synchro

Interested in volunteering? Please email Interested in sponsoring? Please email registrar@ We encourage everyone to join our program — get out, get active, and have fun while doing it!

Contact Erin Kummer • • 519-212-7994 •



GCC adds 3 more programs for junior golfers Submitted by Victor Ciesielski, Teaching Professional at the Galt Country Club Looking for a fun, friendly and safe place for your junior golfer to meet new friends and develop their golf game? The Galt Country Club (GCC) Junior Programs are the perfect way to help your child develop and enjoy the game of golf in an engaging social environment. As the oldest private golf course in Waterloo Region, and one of the oldest in Ontario, our narrow layout surrounded with beautiful mature trees is a perfect place for all junior golfers to develop their skills. GCC’s historic Junior Program has groomed many players through the provincial, national, collegiate and professional ranks — all the way to the PGA Tour. Our 1906 Stanley Thompson layout is located in the heart of Cambridge and unfolds alongside the Grand River. It’s truly a captivating place for junior golfers to embark on their lifelong journey with this great game. Our teaching professionals focus on safety and proper technique to build fundamentals, confidence and, most importantly, increase the enjoyment of the game for each junior. In addition to the current junior membership and program opportunities, GCC is pleased to announce three performance programs. These programs: Girls with Drive, the Development Team and Elite Team, will be coached by Teaching Professional Victor Ciesielski. Victor, a graduate of our Junior Program, has experienced the game at every level from local junior to International Professional golf. Victor’s passion for the game has inspired him to turn his focus towards the development and growth of the sport. Girls with Drive and the Development Team programs provide junior golfers with the opportunity to learn the fundamentals of the game in an upbeat, exciting and inclusive


atmosphere. These two programs are designed to facilitate the development of essential skills, self-esteem and inspire a lifelong love of the game through fun and constructive coaching in a social, group setting. The Elite Team program is designed for young golfers to learn, grow and excel at the game in an engaging team environment. The focus is on the introduction to golf, rules, etiquette and fundamentals of the game. Included are individual one-on-one lessons, team golf sessions and team fitness with a certified personal trainer. Participants will learn how to manage themselves physically and emotionally in challenging scenarios. Our goal is to build character, sportsmanship and leadership while developing golf-specific skills and overall athletic abilities. Here at the GCC, we focus on building friendships and fundamentals, which increase enjoyment in a low-pressure, progressive and inclusive atmosphere. Our friendly and knowledgeable teaching professionals use our beautiful facilities to guide junior golfers in the right direction athletically while instilling valuable life lessons. Visit for our all-new membership pricing and for detailed information about our private, semiprivate and junior coaching programs. Whether you’re new to golf, or looking to perfect your swing, we’ve got you covered. Let us take your game to the next level!


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Mar/Apr 2017 OWNERS Brad Eason 519-208-9302 ext. 837 Erin Kummer 519-208-9302 ext. 838

EDITOR Gord Dearborn GRAPHIC DESIGN Alyssa MacLeod


Lori Becker, Ken Brooks, Victor Ciesielski, Lyndsay Koivisto, Kirsten Loop, Cindy Stewart, Eurofit, Kitchener Minor Girls Softball, the Kitchener Sports Association, KW International Children’s Games, the KW Synchronized Swimming Club, the KW Titans, safeTALK, Skills Plus Hockey, the ROW Swim Club, Sertoma Speed Skating Club, the Tri-City Scuba Centre, University of Waterloo, the SportsXpress team and numerous local sports fans and photographers.

PARTNERSHIP Cambridge & North Dumfries EDITIONS Chatham/Kent Guelph & Wellington Kingston KW & Stratford London Mississauga Oshawa/Durham Peterborough Windsor

PARTNERSHIP Contact SportsXpress at: INQUIRY 1.877.588.8856 or

email NATIONAL AND 1-877-588-8856


Editorial Contributions: Submissions are welcome from writers, photographers, athletes, coaches and individuals. Please contact the publisher. We assume no responsibility for unsolicited material. Contributors are responsible for obtaining all approvals for publication of photos and content prior to submission. All submissions may not be used. We may edit, publish, reproduce, distribute and archive submissions in any form or medium without any compensation. We are not responsible for lost or damaged submissions. Contents copyrighted. All rights reserved. Reproduction or transmission of any article, photograph or artwork in any form or by any means without permission from the publisher is prohibited. SportsXpress is published six times per year. Sports Express Media Inc. is committed to protecting your privacy as our customer. We may collect personal information only if it is required for the proper functioning of our business and only share this information with our business partners. The editors and contributors who write for Sports Express Media Inc. attempt to provide accurate and useful information and commentary. However the editors, contributors and Sports Express Media Inc. cannot and do not guarantee the accuracy of this information. We assume no responsibility for any actions or decisions taken by any readers based on the information provided.

Men and Women’s Open • Apr 23 at Conestoga College’s Athletic Centre • Register your team at


2015 Athlete of the Year nominees include Hoffman, Benesch and Varga Submitted by Ken Brooks. This is the fourth publication profiling the 2015 AOTY nominees.

Mike Hoffman

Ryan Benesch

Tyler Varga

• Top rookie goal scorer in the NHL • 27 goals scored in 14/15 season • 4th among rookies with 48 points • 2nd among NHL rookies with a +16 goals for/against average. • Selected for NHL All-Star weekend

• World Championship – gold medal setting new scoring record for Bandits • 55 goals, 58 assists and overall total points of 113 for Buffalo Bandits • National Lacrosse League (NLL) goal-scoring title and third-place finish in the scoring race • 1 of 3 finalists for the MVP Award for the 2015 National Lacrosse League

• Selected by the Indianapolis Colts as an undrafted rookie • Played three games with the Colts, rushing for 2 yards; receiving for 18 yards and returning kick offs for 151 yards and making one tackle on special teams

The Athlete of the Year Award was launched in 1999 to recognize the tremendous accomplishments of local athletes from Kitchener, Waterloo and the Townships of Wellesley, Wilmot and Woolwich. Some of the previous recipients of this prestigious award include Lennox Lewis, Scott Stevens, Sarah Pavan, Andrew Poje & Kaitlyn Weaver and Kelly Vanderbeek.

For a full history of this community event, please visit

Contact Erin Kummer • • 519-212-7994 •



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#goblackgogold GOWARRIORSGO.CA Men and Women’s Open • Apr 23 at Conestoga College’s Athletic Centre • Register your team at 6 Check out our full varsity schedules online at


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Contact Erin Kummer • • 519-212-7994 •



It takes a community... Submitted by Cindy Stewart, Marketing Co-ordinator There is a saying, “It takes a village to raise a child,” but in the hockey world of junior players, “It takes a community to raise a family.” The success of the 2016–17 Winter Hawks can be attributed to this very thing. It does take a community, and the involvement of individuals in that community, to create the family atmosphere that allows young men to evolve as players and grow in character. For the Winter Hawks, it starts the individuals in Cambridge Hockey Operations who work tirelessly, not only during the hockey season, but throughout the year to find those individual players that they feel will gel and produce a successful team. That entails miles in the car as they travel from centre to centre, attending game after game watching for that player who stands out. They also spend hours on the phone negotiating with families and teams. Then, at the trade deadline, they have to make decisions that will affect individuals as well as the entire team — often this is the most difficult time. The Winter Hawks are very proud of their coaching, medical, and equipment staffs. The time spent by the coaches going over tapes and systems, dealing with a myriad of personalities, going from one rink to the next, coming up with game plans for each of their opponents, preparing for practices and managing the roster, is relentless and often done for the love of hockey. Our medical and equipment staffs both have the same focus on their mind — the safety and welfare of our players. They often have to make difficult decisions when all a player wants to do is get back out there to play. Volunteers are paramount in the success of a team, and the Winter Hawks’ volunteers are second to none. They give up their Saturday nights to help with game operations and security, work in the box office, sell merchandise and programs, and perform numerous other activities throughout a game including


Chuck-A-Puck with Screech and our YNCU Shootout. In order to keep the community informed, we have our Pointstreak Operators, game announcers, videographer and photographers, Twitter operator, and of course, we cannot forget our anthem singers who officially open the games. For some, it goes well beyond Saturday as they work to market the team in the community and get the players involved in Cambridge functions. We mustn’t forget our Corporate Sponsors that, year after year, provide financial support to the team and make it possible to ice a junior hockey team that the City of Cambridge can be proud of. When the season comes to a close, the Cambridge Winter Hawks family can look back and be proud of their accomplishments. This year’s team: • Had four players selected to play in the Top Prospects and All Star games: Matt MacKay, Holden Wale, Tristan DeJong, and Max Wright with Sean Ross was chosen as an alternate. • Tripled its wins from last season, ending the year with 60 points and a berth in the playoffs— just one point short of fourth place and within reach of third. • Coach Dan Fitzgerald was named the GOJHL Midwestern Conference Coach of the Year. He worked with a topnotch coaching staff of Associate Coach

Adam Wallace, Assistant Coach Brandon Shaw, and Goalie Coach Zach Grasley. • Jordan Oshowy (#6), was awarded the GOJHL Midwestern Conference Defenceman of the Year, along with a place on the 1st All-Star Team. • Ryan Shaw (#12), Cambridge’s top scorer, was named to the 2nd All-Star Team. • Off the ice, the boys participated in MADD Waterloo Region, visited schools, and volunteered their time with the Galt Minor Hockey School as well as Cambridge and Hespeler Minor Hockey. They spent an evening as servers at the Lonestar Texas Grill to raise funds for The Darling Home for Kids in memory of a dear fan who passed away. Always eager to help out, the boys represent the team well. Without all this, we would just be a hockey team, but instead we are a family that players, both past and present, speak highly of. It does indeed take a community to raise a hockey family! If you want to become a member of our family, then check out what we have to offer on our website www. or look for us on Facebook. If you want an opportunity to play for the Winter Hawks, check out our Spring Prospects camp on May 6 – 7. Information and applications can be found on our website.

Men and Women’s Open • Apr 23 at Conestoga College’s Athletic Centre • Register your team at


The Unravelled Self Gyrotonic Submitted by Kirsten Loop

Wimbledon champion Andy Murray swears by it, Tiger Woods rehabilitated a knee with it, Lady Gaga warms up with it, and professional dancers around the world train on it. It’s called Gyrotonic, and it’s the most incredible form of performance-enhancing exercise and rehabilitative movement you’ve never heard of. And, the only studio with a fully certified and licensed instructor in southwestern Ontario, has just opened up — right here in uptown Waterloo! Designed by an injured professional dancer over a 25-year span, Gyrotonic gets the spine undulating again — three-dimensionally, in all directions. Every movement incorporates some sort of spiral motion, whether it’s through the entire length of the spine from cranium to sacrum, or through joints, such as hips and shoulders, that rely on efficient and controlled internal and external rotation. The Pulley Tower, a non-motorized “machine” of straps, cables, pulleys, and knobs, supports and challenges your body so that you can reach into space to much greater degrees with more precision than you ever could without that support. Fully adjustable for all ages and abilities, the machine has you pulling and pushing to extend and master your range of motion under different conditions of tension, height, and reach. You can then strengthen your movement — your entire body’s ability to twirl, pivot, twist, scoop, prowl, shift, and follow though. You redevelop intricate command over your body; shock absorption improves; strength builds and suppleness returns.

Kirsten’s story Kirsten Loop of The Unravelled Self came to Gyrotonic with a broken body. After 20 years in software development and the chronic pain that comes sitting all day, she could no longer twist

Gyrotonic chair/floor workshop and classes around town. These sessions, paradoxically, are more challenging than the machine work as you need to rely on your own body to achieve precision in the movement. For more information, visit their website at or call 519-497-1258.

around to look behind her. At 45 years of age, she felt 85. Kirsten explains, “Gyrotonic does something for my body that absolutely no other form of exercise has been able to. I’ve undone years of tension and restrictions in movement. My chiropractic bills and ibuprofen use have plummeted. I can do yoga again without throwing out a rib, I can fullbody yawn in the morning without kinking my neck and I can assume proper form in the gym now. I’m even considering playing volleyball again for the first time since high school!” Kirsten now provides full handson guidance and instruction in 1:1 machine sessions offers a threesession Intro Pack for those who want to see if they respond to Gyrotonic. She also teaches non-machine based

Contact Erin Kummer • • 519-212-7994 •


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Men and Women’s Open • Apr 23 at Conestoga College’s Athletic Centre • Register your team at


KWICG History Submitted by Kitchener Waterloo International Children’s Games

The International Children’s Games invitation is a Mayor to Mayor request for participation. As such, a city must be involved to accept the invitation to participate.  Prior to 2008, city of Kitchener staff organized participation in the Games.  A decision was made to formulate an ICG committee made up of staff and volunteers to develop a structure and process to send delegations to these games each year.  The committee was struck, and as a majority of affiliated minor sports groups are Regional or are organizations that span both Kitchener and Waterloo, city of Waterloo staff was also invited to the table to participate. As an affiliated minor sports group, the Kitchener-Waterloo ICG Board is recognized as the exclusive committee to work with the City of Kitchener, City of Waterloo and the associated minor sports groups in sending participants to future games. Local youth, aged 12-15, have competed in the following ICG games:   • Innsbruck, Austria, 2016

• • • • • • • • • • • •

Alkmaar, Netherlands, 2015 Lake Macquarie, Australia, 2014 Windsor-Essex, Ontario, 2013 Daegu, South Korea, 2012 Lanarkshire, Scotland, 2011 Athens, Greece, 2009 Vevey-Montreux, Switzerland, 2009 San Francisco, California, 2008 Reykjavik, Iceland, 2007 Coventry, England, 2005 Cleveland, Ohio, 2004 Hamilton, Ontario, 2000

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country and is surrounded by the country’s two largest rivers, the Nemunas and the Neris. Kaunas is known for its colorful history, cozy parks, remarkable and wonderful Old Town and interwar spirit. The city is the hometown of Rūta Meilutytė, the London 2012 goldmedal winner in the 100-metre women’s breaststroke, who started her winning story at the 2010 ICG event in Manama, Bahrain. Kaunas is also a host city of many international sports events dating back to 1939 when it hosted the European Basketball Championship. We invite young basketball players from all over the world to the same historic Sports Hall to have their competitions during International Children‘s Games in 2017.

The Games this year are in Kaunas, Lithuania Kaunas, the provincial capital, is the second-largest city in Lithuania with about 350,000 people and has historically been a leading center of Lithuanian economic, academic, and cultural life. Kaunas, the most student-centered city in Lithuania, is located in the central part of the

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Contact Erin Kummer • • 519-212-7994 •



The Dean Boles Invitational Swim Meet is a huge success

Sponsored by GoldenEyes Optometry

Submitted by the ROW Swim Club On the weekend of February 4 and 5, the Region of Waterloo Swim Club (ROW) hosted the second annual Dean Boles Invitational Swim Meet at the Wilfrid Laurier University Athletic Complex pool. Dean is a former head coach of ROW, a member of the ROW Hall of Fame, a former Swim Ontario coach and is currently the head coach of the Denmark National Team. The meet offered the participating swim clubs the opportunity to swim short course (25-metre pool) races in the morning and race long course (50-metre pool) in the afternoon and evenings of both days. This unique meet setup drew some of the fastest swimmers and the biggest swim clubs in the province. The short and long course regional and provincial championships were only a few weeks away and swimmers were using the meet as a last chance to achieve the swim times needed to qualify for those meets. Toronto, Oakville, London and Kingston were a few of the clubs that traveled to Waterloo to compete against swimmers from the Cambridge, Wilmot and ROW clubs. In total, 377 swimmers attended the

meet over the two days involving five competition sessions —2,129 race entries and numerous personal best times. The successful athletes now continue to train for peak performances at their respective upcoming championships.

ROW congratulates all the swimmers who attended the Dean Boles Meet, competed to the best of their abilities and exhibited great sportsmanship. ROW thanks all the volunteers who helped with the setup and operation of this very successful swim meet.

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Men and Women’s Open • Apr 23 at Conestoga College’s Athletic Centre • Register your team at

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Positive results at EuroFit Submitted by EuroFit

You deserve to feel amazing and experience vibrant health. It’s not difficult to create a healthy body, mind and spirit — it’s a choice. Are you ready to make yourself a priority? Whether you are looking to lose a few pounds, training for your first fivekilometre race or want to strengthen your core, we custom tailor your training program to fit your individual needs and goals. Our training sessions are based on functional fitness principles. The goal of functional fitness is to make you stronger and leaner so that everyday activities become easier. We will review your health and fitness history and discuss where you are currently at and where you would like to go. Learn how one-on-one attention can help you achieve your fitness goals faster while having fun. Everyone needs a personal trainer at one time or another. A personal trainer can help you set and achieve your goals, help you stay on track, motivate you, educate you about the proper form, type and amount of exercise, help you overcome obstacles and provide you with an exciting new program that works!

EuroFit VIP Personal Training and Aerobic Studio clients share their personal experiences: Cliff S. – “Olesia is always very well prepared and offers a challenging workout for each scheduled session. You can always expect a follow up email after each workout to check the results of the previous session. This information forms the basis for subsequent planned workouts. I would recommend Olesia for anyone that is willing and wants to improve the physical condition of their body.” Pauline H. – “Olesia loves her job and it shows every minute she is working with us. She encourages us, pushes us to do more and manages to distract us so that the time flies. She has pushed us to attain incredible results through exercise, diet and lifestyle changes. I highly recommend Olesia as a personal trainer; she gives so much of herself to each and every one of her clients. I’ve seen the results in my husband and myself but also with others. She is remarkable!”

Sharon W. – “I have had some sort of gym membership or fitness routine all of my adult life with adequate success. For the past three and a half years, I have been faithfully working with Eurofit and have had fantastic results. I am currently in the best shape of my life (mid-40s) and no longer suffer from chronic back pain. I actually spend less time working out now since my routines are customized and I get far better results than I ever did when trying to figure it all out on my own.” Jaime K. – “I have been working with Olesia since 2007 and have enjoyed every grueling workout she put me through. She is there to guide and encourage every step (or lunge or push-up) along the way. I would highly recommend working with her if you are serious about your fitness or your health.” Nancy F. – “Olesia has taken personal health to another level for me. She is very reasonably priced and very creative in her workouts. She’s supportive through the times you are frustrated and holds you accountable. I will continue to recommend Olesia to anyone who wants to get serious about their health.”


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Men and Women’s Open • Apr 23 at Conestoga College’s Athletic Centre • Register your team at

Training your individual skills and tactics – The best way to become a leader on the ice!

Hockey Training Skills Tip Individual Technical Skills — How to receive a pass rimmed around the boards in the defensive zone. Improving your skills to receive a pass rimmed around the boards in the defensive zone will signi cantly help you control the puck in an important tactical area. The objective is to consistently receive the pass with control so you can quickly read the play and react to pressure. With proper execution, you gain valuable time to make an effective pass to a teammate or to skate away from pressure. Effective use of your body position, hockey stick and skating pivot will optimize your consistency in controlling the rimmed pass. Players should practice and understand the following fundamentals: •

Position yourself with your back towards the boards in the hockey position, near the board- side hash marks of the defensive zone face-off circle, This gives you a good view of the entire ice surface. Quickly look and see who’s around before the pass comes around the boards (head on a swivel). As the puck comes around the boards turn your body, while keeping your eyes on the puck, until you are facing up ice with your stick on the ice touching the boards (the pivot is 270 degrees – turn towards the defensive end) The pivot should be completed just as the puck approaches the back side of stick blade (if you are playing your off-wing, your stick will be held across your body and the puck with approach the front side of the blade) To help form a trap area for the puck to stop, rmly wedge the upright toe of the stick blade into the boards.

Get an Edge on Your Skills


Control the pass, then lift your head and read the forechecking pressure. Either skate or pass the puck quickly from the defensive zone.

In the moment video analysis

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A simple drill to practice these defensive skills with a friend:

Weekly programs are at RIM Park in Waterloo

Head on a Swivel Drill with a Partner

• Advanced Youth/Adult Power Skills and Power Skating

Partner up with another player and stand together near the face-off circle in the defensive zone (X1 and X2).

• Children’s Power Skills and Power Skating

• XX1 & X2 – start stationary about 1M apart

X1 – lightly dump the puck behind the goal line, chase the puck and execute a firm pass back around the boards to X2 (strong side)

X2 – as the puck is dumped in the corner, skate to board-side hash marks and position yourself with your back against the board anticipating a pass

X1 – after making the pass to X2 skate to the slot area in front of the net – be prepared to receive a pass on a give-and-go

X2 – control the rimmed pass executing the fundamentals outlined above and skate toward the net. Execute a give-and-go with X1 and shoot to score on the net.

• Elite Competitive Pick-Up Training • Goalscoring/Goaltending • Advanced Youth/Adult Power Skills/Skating for Goalies • Children’s Power Skills/Skating for Goalies • In the Moment Individual Video Analysis Training • Poised Defense • Stick Handling and Puck Control

Training in Waterloo Region Since 1998

• X2 – X1 & X2 – switch rolls and repeat the drill Repeat the drill over and over – remember with lots of practice, you will be able to effectively execute this move under pressure in game situations!

Eric Calder - President


Visit our website for more info and/or booking your program: 519-570-3617 • @skillsplushcky

BA & Diploma in Business Administration (WLU)

Eric played professional hockey for 14 years. Among his career highlights is winning the Memorial Cup Championship, playing with the Washington Capitals in the NHL and being the MVP for the Canadian National Junior Team at the World Junior Championships. He is an NCCP High Performance II Certified Coach with over 20 years of professional coaching experience, lectures in the Theory of Coaching at Wilfrid Laurier University, coaches the Waterloo Midget AAA Wolves, leads the “First Shift” (Hockey Canada, Bauer Hockey and Canadian Tire Hockey Initiative Program) and is one of the most sought after instructors in Waterloo Region!

Contact Erin Kummer • • 519-212-7994 •



Canadian diving year round Submitted by Tri-City Scuba Centre, Photos by Stuart Seldon (

We get asked all the time, “Where can you dive in Kitchener-Waterloo?” The answer is simple; we are a short dive from some of the best diving in the world — and we can do it year-round! In February, a group of divers from Tri-City Scuba Centre drove to Tobermory for some shore diving on a group of ship wrecks called “The Tugs”. There are four Great Lakes fishing tugboats that sank close to shore. We were originally going to run a PADI Ice Diver course, but the winter didn’t cooperate with enough ice so we went diving instead. It may not be as appealing as a trip to the Caribbean to some, but winter diving is cheap and a whole lot of fun. Like we say in the store, “If the water gets hard, cut a hole and

dive anyway!” As we shovelled our way in, many locals came by to say hello — even Stu Seldon, Tobermory’s photographerin-residence dove with us. Mike, from Diver’s Den (the local dive shop), joined us in the water for a couple of dives as well. If someone is diving, you know that more divers will come — sort of like cats do when they hear a can of tuna being opened. During the weekend, the pack ice blew in providing us with some amazing underwater scenery, and everyone had a great time. Ice diving may not appeal to everyone, but many divers are always itching to get in the water. So how do we do it? It starts with training and some specialized equipment. The key is to have a dry suit. The suit is a special garment that keeps the diver completely dry — much the same way a skier or snowboarder keeps warm. Even in the coldest conditions, we are quite comfortable in the water. We just add warm undergarments, (even heated vests, socks and gloves), and regulators that are suited for cold water

diving and we are ready to go. We are Canadians after all, so a little cold never hurt anyone! Tobermory is just one of many dive sites we frequent in the winter. There are local private quarries and lakes (permission is required), spots on the St. Lawrence such as Rockport’s annual winter carnival, Humber Bay and many others. It all starts with becoming a PADI Open Water Diver and a Drysuit Diver. The rest is just getting diving experience and finding some dive buddies/ TriCity Scuba Centre offers courses and organized activities as well as venues for divers to connect with each other. There is a lot to see in Canadian waters: from spectacular ancient geology, amazing animals (an eight-foot sturgeon is pretty impressive), to some of the best shipwrecks in the world. Scuba diving is an amazing activity and the most fun you can have — if you like fun that is!


Hosting help is just a call away Submitted by Regional Sport Tourism Office Do you host a tournament every year and would like to add more teams? Are you looking to host one but don’t know where to start? Want to submit a bid for your organization to host a provincial or national event but unsure of the bidding process? The best place to start would be to contact the Regional Sport Tourism Office (RSTO) and let us help. The RSTO is focused on working together with community sport organizations, partners in tourism and the municipalities of Kitchener, Waterloo, Cambridge and Guelph.


Our objective is to increase the profile and support given to current sports events and to attract more events to the area by capitalizing on the great facilities, volunteers and knowledge of our sport community. We can assist you in securing hotel bookings for visiting teams, identify banquet or social event options, and create welcome packages with special offers for local tourist attractions. We work together with organizations on grant submissions and event bids by utilizing bid templates, helping secure bid fees and garnering local

support. We can also share industry best practices and conduct research to help you decide how to include event hosting in your club or organization’s strategic planning. The possibilities of our assistance to you are endless! Hosting an event that you’d love us to promote or work together on? Please share with us through email at or contact Sherry Doiron at 519-2717000 extension 201. We look forward to sharing your events and further sport-hosting advice in future editions of SportsXpress!

Men and Women’s Open • Apr 23 at Conestoga College’s Athletic Centre • Register your team at


Trainer Johnathan Abbott keeps the Cobras in Mint Conditioning all season Submitted by the Sertoma Speed Skating Club

Johnathan Abbott was always athletic and loved to compete. These traits continue to serve him well in his personal training role as owner/operator of Mint Conditioning in Kitchener. Johnathan started up Mint Conditioning in Kitchener a few years ago as a way to focus on his passion for training and working collaboratively with people. As an athlete himself, he found that he really connected with sports teams and sought out opportunities to bring his personal training brand to them. Dryland was a natural fit for his expertise and a young sports team (like the KW Cobras) needing to focus on building their core strength. The dryland program was tough to

with fun,” he explained. And the results show! Johnathan has been with the Cobras skaters for over a year, and they express that they feel stronger, and are better able to handle the fatigue and focus required for the longer, gruelling distances that short and long track skating are known for. Provincial A speed skater Samantha Schmidtke concurred, “I really enjoy Coach Johnathan’s program, even the tough workouts. It’s making a difference for me, on and off the ice.”

build for the speed skaters as Jonathan noted, “I had to heavily research the sport and ask our elite athletes to relate it to what I knew of other ice sports. That helped me to focus on what was different about speed skating.” Johnathan took it a step further by, in true athlete fashion, joining the Sertoma Speed Skating Club’s Learn to Speed Skate program this year to try the skates out for himself. “The sport is so technical, being on the skates helped me to tweak my program in certain areas for the muscle groups most impacted by speed skating,” Jonathan said. Johnathan trains with the club’s provincial and national level skaters (KW Cobras team) once a week for an hour, and both he and the kids love it. “I’ve always loved the team aspect in sports, and I love to see how this team progresses with their dryland technique and their accomplishments on ice. The best practices we have are when they come in high energy and balance that

Connect with Coach Johnathan Interested in connecting with Coach Johnathan Abbott for personal or sports training? You can email him at mintconditioning@outlook. com or follow him on Twitter @ Coach_Mint and Instagram @ JohnathanAbbott.

The reason we exist is to provide enhanced opportunities for all gymnasts to reach their maximum potential through innovative and quality programs. 805 Victoria St South, Kitchener, N2M 5N9 • 519 743 4970

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Update from KW Synchro Submitted by the KW Synchronized Swimming Club KW Synchro has had very successful results since the start of its competitive season. The club’s swimmers started 2017 at the Lisa Alexander Figure Competition with nine athletes receiving scores in the 6.0+ range, which is difficult to achieve. Most athletes that score at that level are 13 years of age or older! At the end of January, our girls participated in the Waterloo Invitational where our 11–12 team finished sixth and our 9–10 duet tied for seventh.

This was a great achievement compared to where they finished last year — a five-point improvement in figures and routine! Their overall goal is within their grasp as they head off to compete at the West Regional Championships that determine who qualifies for the 2017 Ontario Age Group Synchronized Swimming Championships in May. This summer, KW Synchro will be offering its annual Aqua Camp. The camp will include swimming and synchro lessons, arts & crafts, movies,

KW Synchronized Swimming Club Aqua Camp

face painting, bowling and aqua fitness. To register for the camp, go to

August 14-18, 2017 August 21-25, 2017 Aqua Fitness, Synchro Lessons, Movies, Bowling, Face Painting, Swim Lessons, Arts & Crafts

Hockey registration for the 2017/2018 season will begin

Cameron Heights Pool 301 Charles Street E, Kitchener Register at

June 1, 2017 For program information, please go to our website, Hockey registration for the 2017/2018 season will begin June 1, 2017








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To register LUNCH To register or for more information, or contact the SHOTGUN office at 519-579-2229. or contact the office at AT 519-579-2229. Big Webes Memorial IN SUPPORT OF:

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Putting Contest

Par 3 Presidential Shootout Last season over 100 kids played hockey Fees Include: in KMHA because of this program. Your Various Hole Prizes will Conestoga DIRECTLY assist us in Men and Women’s Open • Aprsupport 23 at College’s Athletic Centre • Register your team at keeping them in the game next year.

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Men and Women’s Open • Apr 23 at Conestoga College’s Athletic Centre • Register your team at


Contact Erin Kummer • • 519-212-7994 •



Physical health is only half the story KSA is encouraging everyone to be aware of mental health as well Submitted by Kitchener Sports Association Through the generosity of Kitchener Sports Association and the Rotary Club of Kitchener-Westmount, and in collaboration with Waterloo Region Suicide Prevention Council, minor sports organizations are being encouraged to host a safeTALK workshop for their leadership and stakeholders. Each safeTALK workshop, as outlined at KSA’s Feb. 21 dinner meeting, is a certified learning opportunity to prepare those attending to become

more aware of the signs of suicide, and to share tips on dealing with this sensitive issue. (In sports, with the stress to achieve and perform, the challenges to mental health are significant.) In Waterloo Region, the average for the last few years is an alarming 57 suicides per year; the number of attempted suicides is much greater — and the number of those who consider suicide is significantly higher yet again. Many progressive organizations including the Ontario Hockey League, Ontario Hockey Association, Waterloo Region Police and KW Titans Professional basketball have provided these workshops as part of their philosophy of creating a positive support atmosphere for their stakeholders -- players, coaches, employees, etc. KSA’s monthly meeting

KSA 50/50 draw winner Mike Seidle (and his three daughters). Mike won $5,090 at the Rangers game on Feb. 3, 2017. (Photo by Lori Becker)

this month includes a safeTALK workshop, offered at no charge to attendees. More awareness is good for everyone! Proceeds from your purchase of KSA’s 50/50 tickets at Kitchener Rangers and KW Titans home games not only help local minor sports groups (over $182,000 last year), but also offer the opportunity for you to win big yourself! Some of the recent draw winners are shown on this page — our athletes are everywhere!

SCHOLARSHIP DEADLINE - 5:00 PM, Tuesday April 4 Tana Nash, Executive Director of the Waterloo Region Suicide Prevention Council, is shown accepting a $1,000 cheque from KSA President Bill Pegg. The donation is to help fund a safeTALK workshop (March 21), one of a series of three being sponsored by the KSA, Rotary KW and Campbell Fence & Deck at no charge to participants. (Feb. 21, 2017 KSA dinner)

Visit for more information on the Kitchener Sports Association: grants, scholarships, programs, meetings, draws, etc.

SafeTALK is a half-day alertness training that prepares anyone over the age of 15, regardless of prior experience or training, to become a suicide-alert helper.


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Men and Women’s Open • Apr 23 at Conestoga College’s Athletic Centre • Register your team at

June 7-11, 2017 Whistle Bear Golf Club, Cambridge, ON

Experience the excitement of the LPGA in your own backyard!

Lydia Ko

Kids 17 and under get in free. Volunteer opportunities are available. Tickets and volunteer registration at

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Contact Erin Kummer • • 519-212-7994 •


Join and Receive $500 Club Events Credit

Galt Country Club Be Part of the Journey...

New Special Pricing Intermediate I (age 19-29) from $189 monthly ** Intermediate II (age 30-35) from $224 monthly ** Intermediate III (age 36-39) from $259 monthly ** Annual Dues: Student $885 | Bantam (age 11-14) $312 | Junior (age 15-18) $521 Valid for new adult and intermediate golf memberships only. Credit valid for Cart, Entry and Guest Fees. Annual food minimum applies. HST not included in quoted prices. • 519.621.7020 Men and Women’s Open • Apr 23Cambridge at Conestoga College’s Athletic Centre • Register your team at 24 750 Coronation Boulevard, ON •

SportsXpress KW & Stratford Mar/Apr 2017