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Orienteering Canada statement and updates re COVID-19

We are in unpredictable and uncertain times. The impact of COVID-19 is changing daily and having a significant impact on our daily lives.

All orienteering clubs and associations must monitor information and advice of the WHO and the Government of Canada and public health authorities in their respective provincial/territorial jurisdictions, as well as that of their municipal and/or local health authorities, to assess the risks and to make the best decision for their organization’s programs.

And to all the people who make up our community, please follow the recommendations of your health authorities in your day to day lives. 

The following resources provide updates from the government and relevant health authorities about the current status of COVID 19 and up to date recommendations and best practices:

Latest update from the Sport Medicine Advisory Committee – May 20, 2020 update – english / french

Updates from the Canadian orienteering community:

  • Clubs and associations, please read Orienteering Canada’s communication (May 25th) regarding orienteering and our insurance.
  • Clubs and associations, please read Orienteering Canada’s communication (March 25th) about organizing semi-permanent events and other activities during the COVID-19 crisis.
  • The Canadian Rockies Orienteering Festival (including the Canadian Orienteering Championships have been postponed until 2021. More info.
  • Sage Stomp (and Team Trials) have been cancelled. More info.
  • World Orienteering Day 2020 ( May 13-19 ) has been cancelled.
  • Hamilton (Adventure Running Kids), Calgary (SOGO Adventure Running) and Ottawa’s kids programming have been cancelled for the spring.
  • All orienteering clubs in Canada have cancelled events until further notice.

General information about outdoor activity (note that regulations and guidelines differ across the country and will change as needed)

Updates from the global orienteering community:

  • April 17th update from the IOF with info on this events: World MTB Orienteering Championships 2020, European Orienteering Championships 2020, North American Orienteering Championships 2020, South American Orienteering Championships 2020, World Masters Orienteering Championships 2021 (WMOC), The World Games 2021, Swedish O-Ringen Uppsala 2020 (O-Ringen Academy and the IOF Global Development Conference) and the WOC Clinic 2020.
  • 2020 North American Championships have been postponed until 2021.
  • The IOF and the organisers of the Nokian Tyres World Orienteering Championships (WOC) in Denmark, which were planned to be held July 7-11, 2020, have agreed to postpone the event to a later date.
  • The IOF recently met and devised various principles regarding the rescheduling of all the major events that have been postponed.
  • World Orienteering Day 2020 which was planned to be held in the timeframe May 13-19 is cancelled.
  • The International University Sports Federation  FISU, have announced the cancellation of the 2020 World University Orienteering Championship that should have taken place in Russia in July.
  • The World Masters Orienteering Championships (WMOC ) 2020 scheduled to be held August 7-15 in Slovakia has to be cancelled. The event will be re-scheduled to be held in Slovakia at the latest in 2023.
  • The International World Games Association (IWGA) and Birmingham Organising Committee (BOC) have agreed to postpone the 11th edition of The World Games until 7th to 17th July 2022. The Games had originally been planned to take place from 15–25 July next year. The move is precipitated by the recent postponement of the Tokyo Olympic Games to July 2021

Ideas and best practices to responsibly continue orienteering during the COVID-19 crisis:

  • Orienteering Canada is offering its conference call line to clubs, associations and event organizing committees to meet virtually as needed between now and April 30th (will extend this offer as needed). Orienteering Canada will pay the costs. Contact tracy@orienteering.ca or Anne at president@orienteering.ca to schedule your call and get the necessary dial-in info.
  • Video conferencing: Orienteering Canada now has a business Zoom license. If your club would like to use it, please contact
    tracy@orienteering.ca.

Your club/association can send updates/ideas to communications@orienteering.ca and we will add them to this page

Announcing the 2020 inductees of the Orienteering Canada Hall of Fame

We are excited to announce the 2020 inductees to the Orienteering Canada Hall of Fame.

The Orienteering Canada Hall of Fame was introduced in 2017, as part of Orienteering Canada’s 50th anniversary celebrations, to recognize and honour the individuals who have made exceptional contributions to the sport in Canada.

In January 2020, we added to our Hall of Fame process, with additional categories. Nominations were due in February 2020. The next opportunity to nominate individuals will be in January 2022. Nominators are encouraged to resubmit nominations for individuals who have not been selected. The quality of applicants has been extremely high.

The 2020 inductees to the Orienteering Canada Hall of Fames are:

Order of Orienteering Canada (Lifetime Achievement):
Don Bayly, John Charlow, Adrian Zissos

Athlete Leadership:
Pam James, Ted de St. Croix 

Coaching Leadership:
Bill Anderson

Officials Leadership:
Earle Phillips, Malcolm Adams

Administrator Award of Distinction:  
Gord Hunter, Margaret James

Bios of the 2020 inductees, as well as the original inductees are available at www.orienteering.ca/about/halloffame.

Thanks to the 2020 selection committee members: Kitty Jones, Jim Blanchard and Barbara Scheck

Orienteering simulation exercises - currently available at no cost

We are excited to present Orienteering Canada’s Simulation Exercise Program. This program has been designed both as a training program for our High Performance Program (HPP) athletes and as a fundraiser in which orienteers across Canada can gain access to the exercises being done by our HPP athletes. Under normal circumstances we would be provided these exercises in return for a donation to the HPP. However, for the duration of the nation-wide lockdown due to COVID-19 we are providing access to these exercises for free. 

The exercises being made available are based on the simulation exercises in Michel Gueorgiou’s 2018 book The Winning Eye. Each exercise consists of some sort of map reading exercise with a map/course (often specifically designed) that is paired with a physical workout or a few options of workouts to do with the exercise.  

Each simulation exercise is designed to work on a specific aspect of your map reading or route planning.  All of the exercises are best done with a running component in order to stress the brain and mimic the conditions of orienteering. Many of the exercises, however, can also be done from the coach and will still be challenging!

Here are the links you need:

  1. “Read Me First” info to get you started.
  2. The Exercises
  3. The Common Answer Sheets


Let's Talk Orienteering Speaker Series

Orienteering Canada will be hosting presentations over the next few weeks and months. Please join us on Zoom to talk orienteering.

Tuesday July 21, 2020
5 pm pacific / 8 pm eastern
Two Generation Orienteering Families
We’ll be talking with some Canadian orienteering families who have several generations involved in the sport. Join Emma & Mike Waddington, Rachel, Abbi & Brian May, Jan Erik & Oivind Naess and Kerstin & Ross Burnett. This moderated chat will talk about orienteering “then and now”, share some favourite memories and talk about growing up in an orienteering family.


Tuesday June 23, 2020
5 pm pacific / 8 pm eastern
Mountain Bike & Ski Orienteering
Have you ever wanted to branch out your orienteering expertise beyond just running? Tune in to the next installment of our Let’s Talk Orienteering Speaker Series to hear all about Ski and Mountain Bike Orienteering from some of our athletes! In two short presentations, we will learn more about Ski-O from athletes Milla Tarnopolsky and Robbie Graham who have both raced at a Ski-O World Cup. We will then listen to Molly and Randy Kemp present about MTB-O and their recent international races in Denmark. These presentations and the stories that accompany them will be interesting for all orienteers, no matter your background in skiing or cycling.


Thursday, May 27, 2020
10 am pacific / 1 pm eastern
National Team Athlete Panel
Ever wondered what’s it’s like to train and compete as an elite orienteer? Join us for this panel discussion with national team athletes Emma Waddington, Robbie Graham, Christian Michelsen, and Emily Kemp. Moderated by Canada’s High Performance Manager, Jeff Teutsch, the conversation will cover everything from training routines and international racing, to travel and life with COVID-19 and without a racing season. With the wide range of topics this webinar should be equally interesting for aspiring your orienteers and for seasoned veterans of the sport.


Thursday, May 21, 2020
5 pm pacific / 8 pm eastern
We love sprint orienteering. And why you should too!
When we think of sprint orienteering in Canada, we immediately think of the Greater Vancouver Orienteering Club (GVOC), host club of the popular annual Sprint Camp. GVOC is famous for inventive sprint formats and using even the smallest of areas for fabulous orienteering, year-round. Join us for this presentation with GVOC member Graeme Rennie. Graeme will talk about the basics (and not so basics) of sprint orienteering, tips for creating basic maps, a bundle of different formats for fun training and events, and how sprint orienteering can help build your orienteering club.
>Apologies for accidentally missing the first bit of the presentation. Oops!


April 29, 2020
Map reading theory
A presentation by Jeff Teutsch (High Performance Manager, ex national team member and coach Jeff Teutsch) on the theory of map reading for orienteering. Learn about various models for map reading and how you can use them to improve your orienteering skills. This presentation is relevant to all levels of orienteer.  

Here are the references that Jeff mentions during the presentation:

>Visionary Head Start article
>Article about Thierry Gueorgiou’s map route planning approach
>Book: “The Winning Eye” by Michel Gueorgiou, for sale at orienteering stores around the world. Available in Canada in French and English at o-store.ca.


Communication to clubs regarding orienteering & COVID-19

March 25, 2020
To Canadian orienteering clubs and associations,

A number of clubs across Canada are setting up, implementing and promoting semi-permanent orienteering courses. This is an innovative way for us to get outside and be active as we figure out how to navigate our new normal for the next few weeks or months. As we do so, it is imperative that we respect the guidelines and regulations of our governments and health authorities. We must also consider our collective responsibility for the health of all. Our intent with this communication is to give you an update and some guidance in regards to the orienteering activities described above. We’ve been talking with our insurance company and a legal expert to help us understand how orienteering clubs across Canada can best deliver programming that still fits within our insurance requirements and guidelines and also within our collective responsibility to “flatten the curve”. 

REGULATIONS
We ask that you please ensure that any orienteering programming that you are offering COMPLETELY COMPLIES AND ADHERES with your local, provincial and federal Health Authorities and Government regulations and guidelines. We cannot stress this enough – please make sure that your programming follows every recommendation and that you stay up to date as the recommendations will no doubt change. 

COLLECTIVE RESPONSIBILITY
We also all have a social responsibility to stay home during this crisis. And we all know that being active and being outside is critical for our physical and mental health. Please ensure that your programming is respecting that fine line between the message of staying home and the message of being active and getting outside. Over the weekend, in many places across Canada, we saw parking lots and parks full of people getting outside but not respecting social distancing. As a result, several jurisdictions across Canada have closed parks. Several towns and cities have declared states of emergency. Yesterday, Parks Canada announced that all parking lots at Parks Canada sites across the country will be closed. Several tourism-based towns are asking visitors to stay away. Several cross country ski locations have stopped grooming so that people will not fill the parking lots and ski trails. Please consider if your programming is respecting our collective responsibility to stay home. If there is a not-so-busy park within walking or biking distance of someone’s house and they are able to safely do a semi-permanent orienteering course there, that sounds reasonable given what the current regulations are (as of March 25, 2020). If someone gets in their car and drives to a park and parks in a busy parking lot and does some orienteering in that busy park, that doesn’t sound reasonable given the current regulations. So we ask that each club think carefully about this and make sure that each club’s programming and communications aligns with our collective responsibility to the health of all Canadians.
You can check Orienteering Canada’s COVID-19 Update page for relevant information regarding outdoor activity.

STANDARD INSURANCE GUIDELINES
We also want to stress that in order for your semi-permanent course to best comply with Orienteering Canada’s insurance, your club needs to comply with the following which are the same direction that we have for all orienteering events in Canada at all times:

  • The activity must be set up by a properly trained official
  • The activity fits within the regular standards of the sport and the organizer has made attempts to reduce known risks
  • Anyone who participates in your activity must be a registered member of your club (this can include a “day-of” member) and must have signed a waiver (your club may want to consider an inexpensive “COVID-19 season” membership).

You can learn more about the insurance requirements at: http://www.orienteering.ca/wordpress/wp-content/uploads/Insurance-Writeup-for-Website-2017.pdf

@HOME ACTIVITIES
The activities that we are talking about above are only relevant if we stay in the current scenario. We also may be in a “lock-down” scenario where people will not be able to leave their home except for groceries, etc. And there are currently many Canadians who are in quarantine or are self-isolating and are not able to leave their home. To address these situations, we also know that several clubs are working on suggestions and challenges for our orienteering community to do at home (inside or in the backyard). We will be sharing these activities through Orienteering Canada’s social media and the website. If you have an idea that you want to share  or need some help to implement an idea, please reach out to us (charlotteATorienteering.ca). There has been no better time for the entire Canadian orienteering community to work together and share ideas… as we are all in this together. Here’s a link to @Home activities that SOGO Adventure Running is creating for their pre-school program (SOGO Squirts) families – a great example of the type of “at home” activities that we can share and promote.

Please contact us if you have any questions at all about this. You can contact the Orienteering Executive Director, Tracy at tracyATorienteering.ca or the President, Anne at presidentATorienteering.ca.

We have been watching orienteering clubs across the country be so innovative as we tackle this unprecedented crisis. It’s wonderful and inspiring. Thank you.  

Stay safe. Stay healthy. We are all in this together.

Orienteering Canada

Postponement of the 2020 Canadian Rockies Orienteering Festival until 2021


With all the uncertainty surrounding Covid-19 and in line with other sporting events, the 2020 Canadian Rockies Orienteering Festival (CROF) including the 2020 Canadian Orienteering Championships (COCs), Western Canadian Orienteering Championships (WCOCs), Crowsnest Barebones events and the Sass Peepre National Training Junior Camp scheduled to take place in July 3-12, 2020 have been postponed until 2021.

This will be a disappointment for many, as it is to the organizers, but we feel at this time, it is the only responsible decision to make. We do not take this decision lightly, as 2020 will be the first time that the Canadian Orienteering Championships will not be held since the first COCs in 1968.

The Canadian Rockies Orienteering Festival will be rescheduled for the summer of 2021.

Please see the full statement with more details at: https://crof2020.com/

Inviting Nominations to the 2020 class of the Orienteering Canada Hall of Fame

The Orienteering Canada Hall of Fame was introduced in 2017, as part of Orienteering Canada’s 50th anniversary celebrations. We inducted 10 individuals as Builders (now called the Order of Orienteering Canada) in the inaugural Orienteering Canada Hall of Fame: Pat de St. Croix, Jack Forsyth, Kitty Jones, Colin Kirk, Jack Lee, Charlotte MacNaughton, Sass Peepre, Chris Skene, Patricia Skene and Jim Webster. Read more about the inaugural inductees here.

We are now launching our on-going Hall of Fame process, as we build on and grow our Hall of Fame. We have expanded the number of categories. The nomination window is now open.

Timeline
January 15 – request for nominations announced
February 15 – nomination deadline
March 15 – Hall of Fame inductees announced
Nominations will be accepted every two years: 2020, 2022, 2024, etc.

Purpose & Categories
Great sport organizations are built with purpose, and by people with passion, vision and dedication. This sport thrives because of the people who have made distinguished, lasting and valuable contributions and commitment to improve all areas of orienteering. The purpose of the Orienteering Canada Hall of Fame is to recognize and honour the individuals who have made exceptional contributions to the sport in Canada. The Orienteering Canada Hall of Fame includes the following categories:

  1. Order of Orienteering Canada (Lifetime Achievement)
    (The initial 2017 inductees are in this category. We have changed the name from the original “Builder” category).
  2. Athlete Leadership
  3. Coaching Leadership
  4. Officials Leadership
  5. Administrator Award of Distinction

Category Information

Order of Orienteering Canada (Lifetime Achievement)
This category recognizes and brings attention to those who have demonstrated an extraordinary commitment to building the sport of orienteering in Canada. Individuals in this category have dedicated years of leadership service at international, national, provincial/territorial and/or the club level. Their vision, leadership and effort has made a distinct, valuable, positive and long lasting impact on Canadian orienteering.
This lifetime achievement award shall be given to individuals who have contributed to the sports heritage of Canadian orienteering for a period of not less than fifteen (15) years, although such a period of service need not necessarily be consecutive.
The Order of Orienteering Canada is the highest award in Canadian orienteering. 

Athlete Leadership
The category applies to athletes who have achieved outstanding and long term success in Canada, or as a Canadian competing abroad and who demonstrate exemplary values, both on and off the field of play. Athletes will be evaluated on their personal sport achievements and also on their contributions and the impact they have made to orienteering in their community.

Officials Leadership
Individuals in this category have made an exemplary contribution over a period of years as an official (course setter, controller and/or event director). Individuals may have also made a significant contribution as a developer or instructor of Orienteering Canada’s officials development programs and/or other technical aspects of the sport (such as: rules, event guidelines, LTAD development, etc). Outstanding Canadian mappers may also be included in this category.

Coaching Leadership
Individuals in this category have made an outstanding contribution over a period of years as an orienteering coach and/or as a developer or instructor of Orienteering Canada’s coaching programs.
Ideally, the coach will have training from the National Coaching Certification Program, although this is not an absolute requirement.

Administrator Award of Distinction
Individuals in this category have made a significant contribution to the growth and development of the sport with their orienteering club or provincial/territorial orienteering association or at the  national level. They have made a significant contribution to developing orienteering as a Board member, program developer, innovative promoter of orienteering, etc. They have been a difference maker

The fine print

  • The inductees will be selected by a panel, cross represented at the National, Provincial/Territorial and club level. 
  • More than one person may be inducted per category.
  • The nominator is advised to pick the category which is the strongest fit for your nominee, and to also include relevant information for their involvement in orienteering in other categories. 
  • The selection committee has the discretion to move a nominee to a different category.
  • Inductees may be inducted in more than one category over time.
  • Posthumous nominations are welcome.

Nomination Process
If you would like to nominate someone to the Orienteering Canada Hall of Fame, please download the nomination form here and submit to awards@orienteering.ca by February 15, 2020.

2020 High Performance Program Applications Due November 29th

The application window for the 2020 High Performance Program is now open. Applications are due November 29th.
Canadian athletes aspiring to compete at JWOC, WOC, World Cups, etc should take a look at the 2020 Athlete Handbook to see what the HPP is about and if they are eligible.
The HPP supports athletes in the Learn to Compete, Train to Compete and Train to Win stages of Orienteering Canada’s Long Term Athlete Development model.

Visit the High Performance Program page for more details.

Job Posting: Calgary Head Coach

Foothills Wanderers Orienteering Club (FWOC) is seeking a dynamic and experienced head Coach for its older junior and adult groups. FWOC is one the most energetic orienteering clubs in Canada with many involved, competitive adults and a very large junior program (SOGO Adventure Running). The club makes full use of the many parks maps within Calgary and forest maps in the surrounding area for training and racing. The club is actively engaged in maintaining its strong core of masters orienteers, developing junior elite athletes, attracting and developing new orienteers, creating new maps and, generally, promoting and enhancing orienteering in the Calgary area and beyond.

See the job posting and application details here.

World Orienteering Championships

The World Orienteering Championships (WOC) are underway in southern Norway. A total of eight athletes will be representing Canada. This year there will only be forest races, no sprint races. The distances and the Canadian athletes are:

Tuesday, August 13th:
Middle qualifier (Emily Kemp, Emma Waddington, Jennifer MacKeigan, Pia Blake, Jan Erik Naess, Michael Svoboda, Robert Graham)
First start: 10 AM local, 4 AM Eastern Time

Wednesday, August 14th:
Long final (Emma Waddington, Will Critchley)
First start: 10:24 AM local, 4:24 AM Eastern Time

Thursday, August 15th:
Rest day

Friday, August 16th:
Middle final (top 60 athletes per gender qualify)
First start: 13:28 AM local, 7:28 AM Eastern Time

Saturday, Aug 17th:
Relay (Emily Kemp, Emma Waddington, Pia Blake, and Jan Erik Naess, Michael Svoboda, Robert Graham, running orders TBD)
Women: 4:20 PM local, 10:20 AM Eastern Time
Men: 6:30 PM local, 12:20 PM Eastern Time

It’s always an exciting week to see the top orienteers around the world compete! The organizers have a hashtag #woc2019 and they will have live results, blog, TV, and GPS tracking (purchase may be required for live TV and GPS).

Follow WOC:

woc2019.no/en
worldofo.com
www.facebook.com/wocorienteering
www.instagram.com/wocorienteering

HPP Instagram

Greetings from Norway and Team Canada WOC preparation camp (in the middle of the forest),

-Joonas Pääkkönen, team coach, and Safder Raza, team manager

Canadian Team Competing at World Cup #1

Four Canadian athletes will be competing at the first round of the World Cup in Finland (June 8 – June 11, 2019).

Emily Kemp
Emma Waddington
Christian Michelsen
Jan Erik Naess

The program is as follows:

June 8: Middle Distance (Emily Kemp, Emma Waddington, Christian Michelsen, Jan Erik Naess)
June 9: Long Distance Chast Start (Emma Waddington, Christian Michelsen, Jan Erik Naess)
June 11: Sprint relay (Running order: Emma Waddington, Jan Erik Naess, Christian Michelsen, Emily Kemp)

Results can be found on the event website. Live media (including web-TV boradcasts) can be found on the International Orienteering Federation’s website (fees may apply).