Practice Requirements & Expectations


The following expectations lean toward Varsity and Junior Varsity skiers for whom practice runs from 3:15 p.m. - 5:00 p.m. (or dark) Monday through Saturday. Saturday practice is required for Varsity skiers and is optional for Junior Varsity skiers.

We understand that middle school students are in class much later than their high school counterparts. While practice starts at 3:15 p.m. for high school skiers, middle school skiers are not expected to be at practice until 3:30 p.m. We will always use the first 15 minutes of practice at whatever location we are practicing to stretch, do ski simulation exercises, or strength training until middle school students arrive.

Parents of middle school skiers not on Varsity should contact Coach Abery to discuss their skier's practice schedule. Recommendation is middle schoolers practice three days per week at a minimum.

Breaking it down

  • High schoolers on Varsity: Required practice Monday through Saturday
  • High schoolers NOT on Varsity: Required practice Monday through Friday with optional practice on Saturday
  • Middle schoolers on Varsity: Required practice Monday through Saturday
  • Middle schoolers NOT on Varsity: Parents to discuss schedule with Coach Abery


For each practice, skiers are expected to be dressed and ready on time and to remain with the team for the duration of practice. It is not fair to make skiers who are on time wait in the cold for those who arrive late. It is also not safe for a skier who arrives late to ski alone in an attempt to catch the rest of their group, or for skiers to leave practice without prior notification of coaches.


Attendance at all team practices is required of all team members unless Coach Abery informs skiers otherwise. We realize that athletes lead busy lives, but we believe that commitment to the team is essential for a successful season.

IMPORTANT NOTE: High school skiers, email Coach Abery about absences from practice including the reason.

Excused absences

There may be times that skiers cannot attend practice and feel the need to be exempted from this obligation. Our general rule is that academics take precedence over athletics. However, failure to keep up with one’s schoolwork is NOT a legitimate reason to miss practice. If skiers need to miss practice because they did not budget adequate time to do schoolwork, they should stay home and do their work. However, this will be counted as an unexcused absence.

Excused absences include

  • School academic obligations such as make-up tests for academic subjects. This does not include other extracurricular obligations. Athlete must notify Coach Abery prior to practice.
  • Family emergencies.
  • Illness: Athlete must notify Coach Abery or an assistant coach prior to practice.
  • Injury: Athlete must call Coach Abery or an assistant coach prior to practice.

IMPORTANT NOTE: High school skiers, be sure to email Coach Abery about absences from practice.

Unexcused absences

Unexcused absences include

  • Missing practice as a result of failing to complete previously assigned homework.
  • Family vacations. Regardless of the length of the vacation, it will count as one unexcused absence.
  • Not having a ride to practice AND not attempting to get one from a teammate.
  • Other athletic or extracurricular commitments.

When a skier misses practice without a legitimate excuse (including family vacations), they will not ski at the next meet regardless of whether they are a Varsity or Junior Varsity skier.

Ongoing problems with attendance (more than two unexcused absences) will necessitate a meeting with the coaches to discuss the reasons for failure to abide by team rules. Continued absences will lead to dismissal from the team.

If skiers have any questions about this policy, they should talk to Coach Abery prior to the practice in question.

Any skier who is habitually late and not ready to ski/run at the start of practice will be assigned additional work. Any skier who leaves practice without notifying one of the coaches will be disciplined. A second violation will result in dismissal from the team.

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ISD 196 Nordic Ski Booster Club | email:

Head Coach: Brian Abery | email: abery001@umn.ed