The history of curling
The origin of curling goes back to Scotland in the 16th century, where the sport was practiced on frozen ponds and lakes.
The first recorded game took place around 1541: A Scottish notary noted a challenge between a monk in the Paisley Abbey and a relative of the abbot.
Scottish immigrants spread the sport to North America: In 1807 the first Canadian curling club opened in Montreal and in 1828 the first American club appeared in Pontiac, Michigan. The Royal Caledonian Curling Club in Scotland, the so-called “Mother Club” of Curling, wrote the first official curling rules in 1838.
Technique is essential for curling. Without technique it is difficult to steer the stone in the right direction and at the right speed. Some people are talented by nature, others take time for their development.
As with any sport, perfecting technique is an extremely difficult task, but here are some tips and tricks to help you get started:
Hold the stone with your strong hand and hold a brush or crutch to support your balance in the other.
Squat with your strong leg in the hack, hold the stone slightly forward and on the outside of your stronger foot.
Squeeze off, stretch out your strong leg behind you, your toes gliding over the ice and on the opposite foot.
Extend your arm and hand in the direction you aim the stone. You must be accurate in target and weight (speed and delivery) to ensure that your stone is on your expected target.
To apply the crimp in the direction of your stone, turn the handle clockwise or counterclockwise. This is called giving the correct grip.
The player must clear the stone before passing a certain point known as the Hogline.
Introduction to Curling
Essentially, the goal of curling is to collect points by sliding curling stones over an ice surface to bring as many of your stones closer to the center of the house (the area that looks like a target) than your opponent. However, there is more than that and here are some of the basics that will help you get into this wonderful sport.
Full of swing
Sweeping with a brush, also called a broom, reduces the friction between the ice and the stone surface and makes it curl less. It also forms a thin layer of water that helps the stone glide over the surface, allowing the stone to continue its swing in the desired direction.
At the end of each end, the team scores one point with the stone(s) closest to the centre of the house (known as tea or button).
Teams can collect more points for each other stone in the house that is closer to the tee than the next stone of the opposing team. Stones must be in the house or touch it to be considered for scoring.
The team rating delivers the first stone at the next end and gives the opponents the so-called "Hammer" or the last stone advantage of this end.