Nordiq Canada News

Olympic High Performance Staffing Update

May 16, 2024

Nordiq Canada is proud to introduce the staff who will lead the National High Performance Program (Olympic Stream) under HPD Chris Jeffries. Several roles shift from “coach” to “lead.” This shift better aligns with the decentralized model we’ve been building toward since the 2016 high performance review. It recognizes the role of exceptional coaches and daily training environments (DTE) across the country in supporting Canada’s amazing national athletes.


With strong DTEs, Nordiq Canada’s role is not to direct athlete programs; instead, staff is here to help athletes and coaches implement Individual Athlete Performance Plans (IAPP), and to lead international competition trips. With our financial reality in mind – rising costs and no increase in government funding since 2006 – this system keeps us strong and resilient into the future.


We are excited to introduce:


Julia Mehre Ystgaard, Lead – World Cup Team

Photo: Doug Stephen

Julia has been a formal member of Canada’s World Cup team for the last two seasons, most recently as Technical Services Coordinator. Previously, Julia coached with the Alpine Insurance Alberta World Cup Academy, leading the training group in Canmore.

Conveniently based in Oslo, Norway, Julia will lead:

  • daily support of athlete training and performance in the World Cup environment
  • selection, scheduling, and management of World Cup coaches, technicians and IST
  • communication with World Cup team members including athletes, technicians, coaches, and IST



Eric de Nys, Lead – Domestic High Performance

Eric joined the High Performance staff in 2021 as the NextGen Coach. Previously, Eric was an NST coach from 2006 to 2014, where he coached athletes to Olympic and World Cup podiums. Eric will continue to lead in many of the areas he has been building, including creating a national support system for Daily Training Environments and the domestic High Performance pathway.

With this new role, Eric will lead:

  • development and management of athlete domestic HP pathways for National Ski Team and National Group athletes
  • the Individual Athlete Performance Plan process and delivery for National Ski Team and National Group athletes
  • communication and collaboration of the Daily Training Environments that support National Ski Team and National Group athletes


Jessica Kryski, Lead – Integrated Support Team

Photo: Doug Stephen

Jessica is an employee of the Canadian Sports Institute Alberta and IST Lead for our Olympic and Paralympic programs and, with Biathlon Canada, the National Biathlon program. Jessica completed her Masters in Kinesiology at the University of Calgary in 2007. Since then, Jessica has been working with the Nordic sports as a physiologist at the Alberta Sport Institute in Calgary. Jessica brings to our program a strong expertise and passion in endurance physiology, altitude training, performance planning, athlete monitoring and coach development.

With this role, Jess will lead:

  • management and communication of the Integrated Support Team, including the para-medical group, mental health and performance, strength and conditioning, performance nutrition, biomechanics and data management
  • alignment and support of athlete performance solutions as identified in their IAPPs.
  • research and innovation projects



Matt Smider, Lead – Domestic Development

Matt will continue to lead domestic development under Sport Development Director Julie Beaulieu. Matt joined Nordiq Canada in 2021 after almost 10 years at Head Coach at Revelstoke Nordic. Matt is on parental leave until November. During his leave, please direct Development Team questions to .


Cindy Chetley, High Performance Coordinator

With a background in corporate communications, Cindy joined the program in 2017. Cindy is responsible for day-to-day administrative support, and athlete services including:

  • CCES (anti-doping)
  • Uniforms
  • AAP Carding and Agreements
  • Curtailment of health notifications
  • SafeSport requirements


Learn more about the National High Performance Program