Tackling Ice Skating with a Two Year Old
We did a lot of firsts with Dek in Whistler. First ride on a sled. First dip in an outdoor hot tub in the dead of winter, and first time strapping on a pair of ice skates. Since we were unable to hit the slopes we had to get creative. We ended up spending a lot of time checking out the activities in Whistler Village.
The free skating offered in the Whistler Olympic Plaza (part of the village) was a great option for a morning adventure. The actual skating was free, while skate rentals were CAD $5 a person. Helmets were available at no charge to protect little (and big) heads.
Since I was a bit too pregnant, we decided I should sit this one out instead of trying to balance with Dek in my arms. It was hard enough getting off a sled in the snow let alone some slick ice. I was really bummed. It was my boy’s first time on skates. It was one of the harder moments of the trip, but Mike more than made up for my absence.
You have never seen a kid more excited than Dek was to strap on a pair of skates, and more importantly, wear a helmet. He has been begging for a helmet ever since he saw his friend wearing one while riding a bike. It was the epitome of cool and fun in his mind. With no fear, Dek stepped out on the ice with Mike. We had a “walker” already to go for Dek to hang onto while Mike skated them around. It took a little doing, but Dek finally figured out how to hang on and stay up right.
Once his skills on the walker were mastered (ahem, yeah, right) Dek needed to move onto the big boy skating. No walker, just him and dad. This worked as well as you can expect. I was able to coach from the sidelines and hold his hands a little, but he just could not grasp the idea that he had to take steps. He just wanted to have dad hold him so he could be a limp noodle in his arms and slide around. Needless to say this broke Mike’s back a bit and they were skating around with the walker in no time.
After almost an hour Mike was beat. Stooping over a toddler trying to skate is exhausting. We dragged Dek off the ice. A meltdown ensued. He had to skate! The tears flowed freely. It was definitely nap time. We promised to come back again.
Over a week later and Dek is still asking where the ice and his helmet are. Guess I should start looking for a rink. Then again, this gives us something to look forward to on our next trip.
Know Before You Go
- Free Skating at Whistler Olympic Plaza
- Public skating: 11am-5pm and 6pm-9pm (ice maintenance 5-6pm)
- Best time to go: the earlier the better. Big kids are on the slopes allowing the little ones a bit more room to figure things out.
- Skate Rental shop open 11am-2pm and 6pm-9pm
- Skate rental- $5 (no time limit)
- Helmets are free to borrow and come in sizes as small as Junior (too small for Dek’s head. The small fit him just fine)