Welcome Instructor Jennifer

We are delighted to announce that Jennifer Leavitt has re-joined the Trakkers Ski Instructor Team. Long-time members will remember her as Jennifer McCleneghan. In an interview last week, she shared some of her history with the club and what led her to return to the instructor team.

Jennifer and Daughter IMG_2145

Jennifer and her daughter

Tell us about your skiing background
I learned to ski when I was 10 years old in Edmonton. I got x-country skis for Christmas. I don’t know if it was the -20c constant in the winter or the fact that the skis were absolutely the wrong camber and length for my frame (I later found out that they were a better fit for someone twice my weight) but I never really enjoyed the sport much in those early days. Maybe I just needed a nurturing environment like Trakkers to reach my true potential.

What is your history with Trakkers?
I first joined Trakkers in 1992 I was living in Toronto and looking for a way to enjoy winter.  I heard about Trakkers, joined, and I loved it right away! My mentors were Sylvia, Xavier, Steve F. and Steve P. They were so encouraging …. before long I was buying better skis and improving.  In 1994 I got my CANSI certification and began teaching with Trakkers. The following year, I met my husband-to-be and he came with me to ski with the club. Later, life got messy with 4 kids and although we made a couple of attempts bringing the kids over the years, when we got to child no. 3 it was far from pleasurable. She’s almost 12 now and still claims to hate skiing.  I guess you can’t win them all…..

What led you to re-do your CANSI (Canadian Association of Nordic Ski Instructors) certification to teach again with the club?
Well, my husband has issues with his knees and my teenagers are no longer willing to ski with me so I was looking for ways to get out with others who are passionate about skiing. I came as a guest last year and helped Steve with his skating class. He mentioned then that if I wanted to come back and teach that Trakkers could use more instructors. I did try to get away with a CANSI refresher but was advised to re-do the whole course. I’m sure glad I did as it had changed significantly in 20+ years and I made some great friends at the course.

What do you enjoy most about teaching skiing?
I love experiencing the satisfaction of helping skiers improve on their technique, fitness and skill levels. The look on a student’s face when they get the feeling of a proper glide or when they ski an advanced trail they thought they couldn’t handle is priceless!