June 4th, 2009

"Girls with Guns" Biathlon Program in Alberta, Canada

Our recent story on the Anschütz Model 64-R Biathlon rifle prompted interest in the Olympic sport of biathlon, which combines cross-country skiing with rimfire rifle marksmanship. While most of the top shooters are from Europe, there are many dedicated biathletes in Canada and the USA.

In the video below, Nicki Pacas, a former Canadian National Team biathlete, talks about the “Girls with Guns” biathlon program she leads in Canmore, Alberta, Canada. Nicki’s “Girls with Guns” program has attracted many new female biathletes who enjoy the comradery and the unique challenge of skiing and shooting. Nicki explains: “I enjoy the challenge of biathlon. The best way to describe going from skiing to shooting is, say you just did a 100-meter sprint and a whole bunch of pushups and then you need to try and thread a needle. It’s really, really hard… it’s a total shift in concentration.”

With the help of top Nordic coaches, Nicki has introduced dozens of young women to the sport of biathlon. For many participants this was their first experience shooting rifles. Nicki adds: “It’s so great to see more girls participating in [biathlon]. I think because it’s a girls-only program it’s more appealing…. I think if you give girls the opportunity to have a healthy lifestyle… they’re more likely to make really positive decisions in the future.”

NOTE: You should definitely watch this professionally-produced video. Nicki is a great spokes-person for her sport.

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