Dave Cruikshank

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Dave Cruikshank
Personal information
Full nameDavid Wright "Dave" Cruikshank
Born (1969-01-11) January 11, 1969 (age 50)
Chicago, Illinois, USA
Height6 ft 0 in (1.83 m)
Weight205 lb (93 kg)
SportSpeed skating

David Wright "Dave" Cruikshank (born January 11, 1969 in Chicago, Illinois) is a four-time U.S. Olympic speedskater, an NHL skating and performance coach, owner of DC Hybrid Skating, a performance training center for hockey players in Milwaukee, WI.[1]

Personal life[edit]

Cruikshank attended Glenbrook North High School, where he played varsity baseball and soccer;[2] he graduated Magna Cum Laude from Carroll College with a degree in Business Management.[3] He is the husband of five-time Olympic gold medalist Bonnie Blair,[2] one of the top female speed skaters of her time and one of the most decorated female athletes in Olympic history. Blair and Cruikshank married at the ages of 26 and 21 respectively.[4]

Speedskating career[edit]

After attending a speedskating practice, Cruikshank transitioned from ice hockey to speedskating at the age of eight in Northbrook, Illinois,[2] an area known for its strong tradition of speedskating Olympians.[5] He became a member of the World Short Track Team in 1986.[3]

In 1987, at the age of seventeen, he won the Junior World 500 meters, his first major long track international competition; a year later, he made the 1988 Olympic Team, winning the 1,000 meters at the Olympic Trials. [5]

In 1989, Cruikshank medaled in a World Cup competition and placed 13th overall in his first World Sprint Championships; Cruikshank's career continued, resulting in his making more World Championship Teams and three more Olympic Teams (1992, 1994, and 1998).[6]

US Speedskating inducted Cruikshank into the US Speedskating Hall of Fame in 2008; Cruikshank had competed in international long track events for 16 years.[6]

Olympic Record
Men's Speedskating Competitor for the United States
Rank Olympic Games Event
22 1992 Albertville 500 m
19 1994 Lillehammer 500 m
25 1998 Nagano 500 m

Skating and Performance Coach Career[edit]

After retiring from skating, Cruikshank founded, in November 2002, a performance training center for ice hockey players in Milwaukee, WI.[7] The training involves educating and improving the skills of athletes from the youth level up to the NHL level, using a "Hybrid" skating program. Their goal is to optimize the potential of every athlete from the grass roots kids to the NHL.


DC Hybrid Skating's services both on and off the ice include:[7]

  • Year-long programs
  • Summer/winter programs
  • Camps
  • Private lessons

Clients include but are not limited to Professional, D-I, USHL, and AAA athletes.[7]

Cruikshank’s first professional coaching experience came with the Dallas Stars organization (Iowa Stars).

Cruikshank was the skating coach for both the AHL Rockford IceHogs and the NHL Chicago Blackhawks, from July 2007 to May 2008, working on and off the ice at improving and maximizing skating efficiency; Dale Tallon, Blackhawks general manager from 2005–2009, hired Cruikshank as a conditioning specialist in his effort to rework the on-ice organization.[9]

As the skating coach, Cruikshank's primary duties were to teach players to improve their overall skating skills by instilling tricks of the trade to help them out-skate their opponents; in the NHL, a tenth-of-a-second can mean scoring a goal, and even losing or winning a game, according to Colin Fraser, the Chicago Blackhawks 4th line center.[9]

Cruikshank split time between Rockford and Chicago, helping during practices and also working with individual players outside of practice; at the minor league level, it was Tallon's hope that every player would learn and understand the Blackhawks system before joining the NHL team.[9]

In 2009, AHL Syracuse Crunch, the affiliate of the NHL Columbus Blue Jackets, called upon Cruikshank and Brackenbury to attend practices to help the players skate better.[10]

Cruikshank is currently a Skating Consultant for the L.A. Kings Organization and still runs DC Hybrid Skating out of the Pettit National Ice Center in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.

Performance Apparel and Gear Experience[edit]

Cruikshank's hybrid philosophy crossed into involvement with hybrid athletic apparel when Brad Weisman, the founder of Shwalla performance apparel, contacted him. Weisman, a runner, had developed a temperature-specific shirt for running in Chicago during the winter. When Weisman decided to develop an entire temperature-specific performance apparel line, he contacted Cruikshank, whom he had met in high school, for professional expertise.[11] Weisman started the performance apparel line Shwalla, which later became Blue Speed, LLC.[12][better source needed]

Since August 2009,[2] Cruikshank has been the founder and owner of DASC, a company behind high-performance ice hockey skates.


  1. ^ Under Armour Underground: TNP Training."Meet the Trainer: David Cruikshank."
  2. ^ a b c d ChicagoPartner.com. "David Cruikshank".[dead link]
  3. ^ a b LinkedIn Dave Cruikshank
  4. ^ Rosen, Marjorie (1996-07-08). People.com. "Four on the Aisle."
  5. ^ a b DC Hybrid Skating, LLC. "David Cruikshank".[dead link]
  6. ^ a b US Speedskating (2008-03-07). "US Speedskating Hall of Fame Inductees Announced".[dead link]"
  7. ^ a b c Pettit National Ice Center. "David Cruikshank Hybrid Skating."[dead link]
  8. ^ DC Hybrid Skating, LLC. "How DC Hybrid Skating was Founded." Archived 2009-05-15 at the Wayback Machine
  9. ^ a b c Currier, Dan (2007-12-20). Pioneer Press. "Cruikshank Answers Call to Make Hawks Faster".
  10. ^ Kramer, Lindsay (2009-11-08). Crunch Hockey Blog. "Notebook Leftovers from Syracuse Crunch-Norfolk Debacle."
  11. ^ Trifuel.com. "Industry Profile: How Shwalla Got Started."
  12. ^ resumebucket.com. "Bradley Weisman's Online Resume."

External links[edit]