First Time and Beginners

First Time and Beginners

If it's your first time on the ice we will give you some instruction on how to throw the stone and how to sweep. The act of throwing a curling stone straight and the correct distance does not require brute strength, but it does demand good technique, balance and co-ordination. Practice is essential for beginners and indeed for anyone wishing to improve their play.


Warm-up properly before a game of curling, as this greatly reduces the risk of strain or stretch injury. Be very careful when you move over the ice. You will find it very slippery until you get used to it, and it is very hard if you fall.

Do not step over stones and always step onto the ice with your gripper foot first.

When delivering your stone, wait until you have stopped sliding forward before attempting to stand up, and then rise on your gripper foot – not your slider foot.

Curling stones must never be carried or lifted. Park stones that are out of play and after an end has been completed. Make sure that no one is in the way when stones are being cleared.

Move stones carefully, using you feet or a brush to guide them.


Ice rinks are necessarily cold so make sure you have warm clothes. Gloves are not essential but worth bringing along. Avoid woollen gloves, as you will not be able to grip the brush handle. It is always wise to have an extra sweater. You will soon warm up after a few ends of vigorous sweeping!

Trousers should be made from a stretch material or be loose enough to cause no restriction in the curling delivery. Jeans are not really suitable.


If you have never been on the ice before you should wear shoes with soft rubber soles for maximum grip. The soles should be scrupulously clean and ideally not worn anywhere on the than on the ice.

As you progress you may wish to try a slip on slider. These are elasticated to fit over your sliding foot and will allow you to make a longer smoother delivery.


Be ready to take your shot after the opposition player has started their delivery. Remember to clean the bottom of the stone and the ice in front of the hack before you lay the stone back down.

When sweeping, stand near the T-line in front of your teammate. Don’t stand near the hog line or half way up the rink waiting for the stone to come to you. The skip may call for sweeping as soon as the stone has been released and you should be moving with the stone.


Skips should signal the shot to be played with its hand (turn) and weight, and will call the sweeping for both the line (direction) of the stone and its weight (distance it will travel). Good sweeping straightens the direction of the stone, and increases its length of travel by as much as 15 feet on keen (fast) ice.