Natalya in the XCOttawa Duathlon Jan 22, 2012

Who are we?

The XC Chelsea Masters is a club for both competitive and recreational masters cross-country skiers (i.e., age 30, give or take a few years, and up) run by local coaches in Chelsea, Quebec and Ottawa, Ontario.  It offers a structured training program that is designed to bring masters skiers to a fitness level and technical ability that will allow them to improve their performance in ski races of short and long distances, ski loppets, touring events and recreational skiing. Many masters join in order to get in shape for the Gatineau Loppet or the Canadian Ski Marathon. Others simply want to get in shape for the ski season and learn to be better skiers.

Who can join?

To join the club and participate in the regular programming (e.g. Tue and Sat dryland, Tue and Sat ski practices, Stength Training for Masters, the Racing Program, Roller Skiing Clinics), you should have a minimum of 1 year’s experience skiing, either classic or skate. We will not be teaching you how to ski at our regular practices. You also need a minimum level of fitness, i.e., be able to sustain 2 hours of continuous aerobic activity in zone 1 or 60% of your max heart rate, be able to perform interval training, and be able to perform regular strength training, including exercises such as push ups, core exercises, squats, deadlifts and assisted pull ups without risk of injury.

To learn how to ski, sign up for one of our new Learn to Ski for Masters Athletes (more info here). You may also try a private ski lesson with one of our great coaches or contact the City of Ottawa or Gatineau regarding their ski lessons.


Club Objectives:

  • To develop and promote Masters racing
  • To encourage and promote cross country skiing as a lifelong sport and one of the best activities for adults to stay fit and active
  • To support the cross country ski community at large, including Cross Country Canada, in the promotion of the sport for recreation and competition
  • To help promote the protection of our parks, green space, and wilderness for low impact recreation such as cross country skiing



What do we do?

In the summer, our group training sessions may involve cycling, swimming, trail running, strength, roller skiing, and other activities like kayaking and mountain biking. In the fall, the dryland session activities include ski walking, ski bounding and running intervals, core and general strength, plyometrics, yoga for recovery and roller skiing. In the winter, the on-snow session activities include technique instruction on skis, intervals, endurance skiing, speed work, and ski specific strength. Both seasons will include Max Heart Rate testing for determining your training zones, video analysis, club time trials or fun races, and social events like potlucks.  Other activities include waxing clinics, nutrition sessions, mental training and yoga! Most of all we get really fit and have a lot of fun doing it!

In addition, the XC Chelsea Masters offers the following:

  • Access to the club’s dryland training equipment
  • A fall dryland training camp in October with training and social activities from Friday evening to Sunday evening
  • An early winter on-snow training camp in early December
  • Thursday evening strength sessions
  • Sunday morning roller ski sessions
  • Social activities (e.g. pub nights, guest speakers, potlucks, ski potlucks).
  • A destination race in February or March