How The Game Is Played – The Simple Version

How The Game Is Played – The Simple Version
When one team scores all eight of
its rocks in one end.
Curling is an enjoyable sport, which combines physical
fitness with a social aspect. It is a sport that you can
play just for fun or you can become highly competitive
– you could even aspire to the Olympics.
A rock, which is placed in a position
so that it can protect another.
Foothold in the ice from which the
rock is delivered.
A rock delivered with greater force
than necessary.
An instrument that measures which
rock is closest to the centre of the
house or one (the six foot measure)
which measures to determine if a
rock is touching the circle.
A Sport for All Ages
A Sport for Life
Shot Rock
At any time during the end, the rock
closest to the button.
A curling tournament.
The amount of speed given to the
rock during delivery.
On The Broom
A rock delivered on target to the
Skip’s brush at the far end.
To remove an opponent’s rock from
To bring your rock right up next to
your opponent’s rock.
To move a rock a small distance
without removing it from play
To win an end without last rock
Ontario Curling Association
1400 Bayly St.
Office Mall 2, #2B
Pickering, Ontario
L1W 3R2
Ph: (905) 831-1757
Toll Free: (877) 668-2875
Fax: (905) 831-1083
E-mail: [email protected]
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Copyright © 1998-2003
10 1
Measures are only used when the
Thirds cannot determine position by
just looking at the rock.
How The Game Is Played – The Simple Version
To learn more about the game or where there is a
club near you, just contact the Ontario Curling
Other Common Curling Terms
Curling is a game requiring hand/eye co-ordination – a
game of skill, strategy and luck but above all, it is a
game of fun. It is a game that can be played by both
males and females from the age of 8 to 88. It can be
recreational or competitive depending on how much
time you have to devote to the sport.
The only personal equipment required is a pair of
curling shoes, a brush and warm, comfortable clothing.
The shoes have a special slider on the bottom of one
shoe and a soft rubber sole called a gripper on the
bottom of the other shoe. Brushes are either made
of synthetic material or of hog or horsehair.
Each team has 4 players, called Skip, Third, Second
and Lead. The Skip is the captain or the leader of
the team. The Skip plans the strategy for the team
and stands in the far house holding his/her brush to
tell the team where to aim their rocks. The Lead
throws his/her rocks first, then the Second throws
his/her rocks. The Third throws his/her rocks next
and holds the brush when the Skip is throwing rocks.
It is the responsibility of the Thirds to settle on the
score at the completion of each end by looking at
where the rocks are lying and to mark it on the
Curling is played on a sheet of ice by sliding rocks
from one end to a target, called the house, at the far
end. Alternating between the two teams, each player,
beginning with the Lead, delivers two rocks. When all
16 rocks have been delivered, 8 by each team, an end
is complete. Once an end has been played the teams
turn around and deliver the rocks back – and keep
doing this until all the ends have been played. The
number of ends varies depending upon the amount of
available time and the level of competition – most
games have either 8 or 10 ends and take between 2
and 2½ hours.
The curling rink is long and narrow with a house at
each end. The ice is special pebbled ice, which makes
it easier for the rocks to slide. The rocks are made
of granite and weigh approx. 44 lbs. but with the new
no-lift delivery, they are not difficult to throw.
Little rocks weighing half as much are available for
young children. The rocks used during a game have
two different colours of handles to allow each team
to know which are theirs.
The house has four different sized circles – the 12’
circle, the 8’ circle, the 4’ circle and the button,
which is the small circle in the middle. Sometimes the
house is also called the rings. In order to score
points, your rocks must be all the way in or just
touching the house, which is called biting. Rocks that
go over the back line are removed from play as are
rocks that don’t go over the hog line.
To score points, each team tries to get its rocks
closer to the centre of the house than the opposing
team. Only one team can score in any end. You score
one point for every rock closer to the centre than
the closest opposition rocks. To score the rocks must
be on or inside the circles. If there are no rocks on or
inside the circles, no one scores and that is called a
blank end. The team that wins the end delivers the
first rock in the next end. When an end is blanked,
then the same order of play is kept as in the previous
end. The team with last rock has the advantage and
this is referred to as having the hammer.
Curling rocks don’t travel in straight lines, but curl or
bend as they travel down the ice. In order to make
the rocks curl in the right direction, you must put a
turn on the rock, either a clockwise turn or a
counterclockwise turn. When the Skip indicates
where the rock you are about to deliver is to go,
he/she will also indicate which turn you must put on
the rock. The Skip will also indicate to you how hard
you are to throw the rock. You may be asked for
takeout weight in order to remove an opposition
rock(s) or for draw weight if the Skip wants you to
put the rock gently into a particular spot.
Once you deliver your rock towards the Skip, the
other two players on your team will slide along beside
it and will begin to sweep if asked to do so by the
Skip. Brushing helps the rock go farther and also
helps to keep it on course and to guide it to the
position requested. Another reason for brushing is to
keep the ice clean for the rock. Sometimes frost,
dirt or hairs can cause a rock to go off course so the
ice is brushed lightly to keep it clean.
Brushers may only brush their own rock until it
reaches the far tee line. After the tee line only one
brusher may brush the rock. The other team’s Skip
may brush your rock after it reaches the far tee line
because he or she is trying to brush it out of play.
The area between the hogline and the rings at each
end is called the Free Guard Zone. If a rock lands in
this area it cannot be removed from play by the
opposition until the fifth rock of the end is thrown.
It can be moved within that area or moved into the
house but if removed from play, it has to be returned
to its original position. On the fifth rock, any rock
can be removed from play. This rule makes the game
more interesting and stops teams from just peeling
the other teams rocks off for the whole game.
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