National Coaches Week Coaches Profile: Mark Tilston

National Coaches Week Coaches Profile: Mark Tilston

Without coaches, we would not be able to compete against the best in the world. National Coaches Week is a time to celebrate the impact that coaches have on athletes across the country. Alpine Canada is lucky to have some incredible coaches working with the Canadian Alpine, Para-Alpine and Ski Cross Teams, supporting them in their quest for the podium. 

We are excited to take this opportunity to recognize all ski coaches across the country who are helping skiers develop a love for ski racing, skiing and the great outdoors. 

All week we’ll be highlighting some of the coaches who work with our Team Canada Ski Teams.

Name: Mark Tilston 
Team: Canadian Alpine Ski Team
Role: Men’s Head Coach 

1.     How long have you been a coach? 

25 years

2.     Why did you decide to get into coaching? 

My decision to become a coach actually came after I started coaching. I was coaching while at university and didn’t plan to make a career out of coaching. However, while coaching I was able to really apply what I was learning at university and through this I realized how important it was to have the right program in place, how much opportunity there was to look for incremental improvement and ultimately I became very passionate about it.

3.     What is the best thing about your job? 

It’s hard to narrow down the best thing about my job. It’s seeing the development of people either as athletes, or as coaches or from athlete to coach or into another walk of life. Ultimately what I really like about coaching is that the skillset and process apply to everything in life. Defining goals, creating a plan to work towards them and keep moving towards the vision.

4.     What is the best moment of your coaching career? 

I can’t define one best moment of my coaching career. For me it is about the journey and so it’s a collection of many shared moments that create the journey. It would be easy to highlight results, but they are all the outcomes of the journey and the ‘failed’ performances are as satisfying as they are equally part of that journey and the times where we learn the most. Generally, my greatest satisfactions come from seeing athletes start to relish the process and when the team works collectively and focusses on the details in the knowledge that the results will come.

5.     What’s the toughest part about your job?

Definitely the time spent away from family, friends and home.

6.     What are you most looking forward to about this season? 

The excitement of ski racing with all of its highs and lows.


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