1. Why all the yelling?
For many viewers, the sweeping - and shouting - is the most entertaining aspect. “When you’re watching the curlers sweep, you can really see how much energy they’re putting into it and how intense it is. Usually the more important the shot is, or the closer they get to making it, the louder the skip is gonna’ yell.
2. Who gets to sweep?
Two players on a team alternate sweeping the length of the sheet, while one player deliver’s the stone and one player (Skip) holds a broom as a target to aim at. The Bozeman Curling Club (BCC) provides brooms for beginners.
3. What does sweeping do?
Sweeping cannot make a rock move faster, only farther! Sweeping can also impact how much a stone curls. The more you sweep, the straighter a stone will travel.
4. How many players on each team?
Games are 4 vs. 4. However, some teams in recreational curling have up to 6 members on each team and they sub out after each end.
5. Who gets to throw a stone?
Each player throws 2 stones.
6. How heavy are the stones?
Between 42#-44#. But you never pick them up - only slide them across the ice. The BCC provides all the stones too.
7. Are there different points for the different colored rings?
No. The scoring really is simple: You want to come closer to a bulls-eye than your opponent when all the stones are thrown. In curling terms: The team with the stones closest to the center of the button when the end is finished gets a point for each stone.
8. Do you wear skates or special shoes?
Yes. Curling shoes have special curling soles. The left and right soles are different. One is a sliding sole made of Teflon. The other is a gripping sole, designed to increase traction. The BCC Club provides beginners with grippers and sliders to be worn over your clean footwear.
9. Do you shake hands with your opponents?
Yes! Before and after every game. If you won the game, it is customary to offer to buy your opponent (same position as you) a drink. If you lost the game, offer to reciprocate after the first drink.
10. Is there a referee?
No. The sport is governed by the spirit of curling: Printed on page 1 of the World Curling Federation’s official rule book, “the spirit of curling” acts as an honor code, a kind of philosophical creed for players of the game: “Curlers play to win, but never to humble their opponents. A true curler never attempts to distract opponents, nor to prevent them from playing their best, and would prefer to lose rather than to win unfairly. ... While the main object of the game of curling is to determine the relative skill of the players, the spirit of curling demands good sportsmanship, kindly feeling and honorable conduct.”
BONUS: When can you try?
The next public Learn to Curl will be held during our Curling Bonanza Extravaganza: Curling Expo held on February 25th, an all afternoon curling event. Come throw a stone, or take an entire class! The afternoon will end watching the women’s Olympic championship at a local bar to be selected.
Learn more at http://www.bozemancurlingclub.com/