Learning how to play curling takes patience. It is contrary to so many sports because it requires the player to use their entire body to gently deliver a 42 pound granite stone down a lane of ice with great accurately.
To play curling, you will need:
- Curling rink
- Two Teams of four players each
- sixteen granite stones
- Curling brushes or brooms
1. Object of curling. Each player throws two stones each end, alternating with their counterpart on the opposing team, until each team throws sixteen stones to complete the end. The stone that lands the closest to the Tee line at the opposite of the curling rink scores. The team players are the Skip (team captain), the Lead, the Second, and the Vice. During play there is a Skip directing the play, a player throwing, and two players brushing the ice in front of the stone as it glides. Brushing the ice warms it causing a slight melting which encourages the stone to slide further. The team with the most points after ten ends wins.
2. The curling rink. A curling rind is 138’ x 14’ of ice. The important features of a curling rink are the House, the Hack, and the Hog line, and the Tee line. The House is three circles, four, eight and twelve feet in diameter (similar to a target) and at the center is the button. At each end of the rink is a hack which is a foot stop for pushing off to deliver the stone. There are two Hog lines 21 feet from each end. The stone must pass the Hog line to be entered into play. The Tee line resembles crosshairs over the center of the House and is the optimum scoring position. The stone closes to the button scores.
3. Playing curling. To begin the game the first team player will throw a stone. The 42 pound granite stone is thrown using a delivery that resembles bowling. The player pulls the stone backwards, while positioned against the hack, and then pushes the stone forward while pushing off the hack. The player will gently glide on the front leg which is vertical, but bent at the knee, with the other leg extended behind. The player slides on the ice to position and aim the stone in one motion, while holding the handle of the stone. The stone is released just before the first Hog line. The stone slides down the rink aimed at the Tee as the brushers guide the stone. Each player throws two stones to complete the end. The second team repeats the steps.
4. The Draw. A stone is thrown and the Skip directs the sweepers where and how to sweep the stone into the perfect position.
5. The Takeout. The object of the takeout is to remove the opposing team’s stones from the house and take them out of play. This is done by throwing the stone as directed by the Skip and brushing the path to guide the stone to the takeout. As success takeout will remove the opponent’s stone while keeping your stone in play.
6. Guarding. Guarding is placing your stone in front of your other stones to prevent a takeout.
The maximum score a team can have is eight points an end. The game consists of ten ends and takes between two and three hours to complete.
- Less is more when Curling. This is not a power sport. It takes balance, finesse, and strength to hold a steady throwing position long enough to make the delivery.
- Curling is played on ice. Always use the proper equipment to protect yourself from injury on the ice.