Curling for Kids: Introducing the Sport to Young Athletes

Curling for Kids: Introducing the Sport to Young Athletes

Welcome to our comprehensive guide on curling for kids! In this article, we will explore the exciting world of curling and how it can benefit young athletes. Curling is a unique sport that requires strategy, teamwork, and precision. We will delve into the basics of curling, including its history, equipment, and rules, to provide a solid foundation for young athletes looking to embark on this rewarding journey. Whether your child is a beginner or already has some experience in the sport, our aim is to encourage their passion for curling and help them develop their skills. Let’s dive in and discover the wonders of curling together!

Benefits of Curling for Kids

Physical Fitness and Coordination

Curling is a sport that offers numerous physical benefits for kids. The game requires a great deal of physical fitness and coordination. As young athletes participate in curling, they engage in a full-body workout that involves balance, strength, and flexibility. The sweeping motion used to guide the curling stone down the ice activates the muscles in the arms, shoulders, and core, helping to develop strength and endurance. Additionally, the act of sliding on the ice while maintaining balance improves coordination and agility, enhancing overall physical fitness.

Teamwork and Communication

Curling is a team sport that emphasizes the importance of teamwork and communication. For kids, learning to work together as a team is an invaluable skill that can be applied in various aspects of life. Curling requires players to communicate effectively with their teammates, discussing strategies and making decisions collectively. The sport encourages cooperation, trust, and respect among team members, fostering a sense of camaraderie and unity. Through curling, young athletes learn to rely on each other, enhancing their ability to collaborate effectively and develop strong interpersonal skills.

Strategy and Critical Thinking

Curling is often referred to as "chess on ice" due to its strategic nature. Introducing kids to curling can significantly enhance their critical thinking skills. The game requires players to analyze the playing field, assess the positions of the stones, and make strategic decisions accordingly. Kids learn to anticipate the movements of the stones, plan their shots in advance, and adapt their strategies based on the actions of their opponents. Curling promotes problem-solving abilities, decision-making skills, and strategic thinking, allowing young athletes to develop a tactical mindset that can be applied both on and off the ice.

In conclusion, curling offers a range of benefits for kids. It promotes physical fitness and coordination, encourages teamwork and communication, and develops strategic thinking and critical reasoning skills. By introducing young athletes to curling, they can not only enjoy a fun and engaging sport but also gain valuable life skills that will benefit them in various aspects of their lives.

Introduction to Curling Equipment

Curling is a unique sport that requires specific equipment to play. In this article, we will explore the different types of equipment used in curling and their importance in introducing the sport to young athletes.

Curling Stones

Curling stones, also known as rocks, are the most essential equipment in the sport of curling. These stones are made from a special type of granite and weigh approximately 42 pounds each. The smooth and polished surface of the stones allows them to glide effortlessly on the ice.

The shape and design of curling stones are meticulously crafted to ensure optimal performance. The bottom of the stone, known as the running surface, is concave to minimize friction on the ice. The handle, also called the handle or grip, is attached to the top of the stone and is used by the players to guide and release the stone.

Curling stones come in different colors to distinguish between teams during a match. They are carefully maintained and regularly polished to maintain their ideal condition.

Curling Brooms

Curling brooms play a crucial role in the game as they are used to sweep the ice in front of the moving stone. These brooms are typically made of synthetic materials and have a long handle for easy maneuverability.

Sweeping the ice with a curling broom creates friction, which can affect the path and speed of the stone. By sweeping in front of the stone, players can control the amount of curl, or the sideways movement, the stone achieves. Additionally, sweeping can also help to clean the ice and remove any debris or imperfections that could hinder the stone’s movement.

Curling brooms are available in various styles, including traditional corn brooms and modern synthetic brooms. Young athletes can choose a broom that suits their preference and helps them develop their sweeping technique.

Grippers and Sliders

Grippers and sliders are specialized accessories that curlers wear on their shoes to enhance their performance on the ice. Grippers are rubber soles that provide traction and grip when players are walking on the ice. They are worn on the non-sliding foot to ensure stability and prevent slipping.

On the other hand, sliders are usually made of Teflon or other low-friction materials. They are attached to the sole of the sliding foot and allow the player to glide smoothly on the ice while delivering the stone. Sliders reduce friction between the shoe and the ice, enabling the curler to achieve the desired speed and accuracy when releasing the stone.

Young athletes learning to curl can benefit from using grippers and sliders as they improve their balance, stability, and overall control on the ice.

In conclusion, understanding the equipment used in curling is essential when introducing the sport to young athletes. Curling stones, brooms, grippers, and sliders all play a significant role in the game and contribute to the overall experience and performance of the players.

Basic Curling Techniques for Kids

Sliding and Delivery

Sliding and delivery are fundamental techniques in curling that every young athlete should learn. The sliding technique involves pushing off from the hack, a foothold at one end of the ice, and gliding towards the target area known as the house. Kids should practice balancing their weight on the sliding foot while extending the opposite foot behind for stability. Proper body alignment and arm positioning are crucial for an accurate delivery. Coaches can guide children on how to release the curling stone smoothly and with the right amount of force.


Sweeping is an essential aspect of curling that helps control the stone’s speed and direction. Kids should be taught the correct sweeping technique early on. The sweeping motion involves using a brush to vigorously sweep the ice in front of the moving stone. This action creates friction, which reduces the stone’s resistance on the ice and allows it to travel further. It is important for young athletes to understand the coordination required between the sweepers to maximize the stone’s effectiveness. Regular practice will help them develop the necessary strength and technique to become proficient sweepers.

Understanding the Ice

Understanding the ice conditions is crucial for young curlers to excel in the sport. Coaches should explain the different types of ice surfaces and how they can impact the game. Kids should learn to observe the ice for any irregularities or variations in texture, which can affect the stone’s trajectory. It is important to teach them to adapt their technique and strategy based on the ice conditions. By understanding the ice, young athletes can make well-informed decisions during gameplay, enhancing their overall performance.

Remember, mastering these basic curling techniques will provide a strong foundation for young athletes to build upon as they continue their journey in the sport.

Safety Measures and Proper Etiquette

Wearing Protective Gear

When introducing young athletes to the sport of curling, it is essential to prioritize their safety. One of the first safety measures to implement is ensuring that all participants wear proper protective gear. This includes helmets, knee pads, elbow pads, and gloves. These protective items can significantly reduce the risk of injuries, especially when players are learning how to balance and maneuver on the ice. By providing and enforcing the use of protective gear, we can create a safe environment for kids to enjoy the sport without unnecessary accidents.

Staying Hydrated

Staying hydrated is crucial for young athletes engaging in any physical activity, and curling is no exception. While it may not be as physically demanding as some other sports, it is essential for kids to drink plenty of water throughout their curling sessions. Proper hydration helps maintain their energy levels, enhances concentration, and prevents fatigue. Coaches and parents should encourage children to bring their water bottles and remind them to take regular sips during breaks. By instilling good hydration habits from the start, we can ensure that young curlers stay healthy and perform their best on the ice.

Respecting the Ice and Other Players

Teaching proper etiquette is an integral part of introducing young athletes to curling. Respecting the ice and other players is essential to maintain a positive and enjoyable experience for everyone involved. It is crucial to instruct kids on the importance of not damaging the ice surface with their equipment or by rough play. They should also be taught to avoid distracting other players during their turns and to wait patiently for their own opportunity to participate. By instilling respect for the ice and other players, we can foster a sense of sportsmanship and create a welcoming environment for young athletes to learn and excel in the sport of curling.

Remember, when introducing curling to kids, safety should always come first. By prioritizing the use of protective gear, ensuring proper hydration, and teaching respect for the ice and other players, we can create a safe and enjoyable environment for young athletes to embrace this unique and exciting sport.

Fun Curling Drills and Games for Kids

Curling Target Practice

One engaging way to introduce young athletes to the sport of curling is through target practice. This drill not only helps develop their aim and accuracy but also makes the learning process enjoyable. Here’s how you can set up curling target practice for kids:

  1. Equipment: Gather a set of lightweight curling stones or use soft foam stones to ensure safety.
  2. Set up the target: Use masking tape or chalk to mark a target on the ice or floor. Create different concentric circles to represent different point values.
  3. Demonstration: Explain the objective of the drill to the kids. Show them how to slide the stone and aim for the target, emphasizing the importance of technique and control.
  4. Practice rounds: Let each child have a few turns to slide their stones towards the target. Encourage them to experiment with different techniques and observe how their stones behave.
  5. Scoring: Assign points to each circle in the target based on difficulty. Keep track of the scores and reward the child with the highest score at the end.

Mini Curling Matches

Introducing kids to mini curling matches is an excellent way to foster teamwork, competitiveness, and strategic thinking. Here’s how you can organize mini curling matches for kids:

  1. Team formation: Divide the kids into teams of two or three, depending on the number of participants. Encourage them to come up with creative team names.
  2. Equipment: Provide each team with lightweight curling stones suitable for their age and size. Ensure they have brooms to sweep the ice as well.
  3. Game setup: Create a mini curling rink by marking the boundaries on the ice or floor. Adjust the size according to the available space. Place the house (the target area) at the far end of the rink.
  4. Rules and gameplay: Explain the basic rules of curling to the kids, such as sliding the stone, sweeping to control its speed and direction, and aiming for the house. Let them take turns sliding their stones towards the house, alternating between teams.
  5. Scoring: Award points to the team that has the stone closest to the center of the house. Keep track of the scores throughout the match and declare the winning team at the end.

Obstacle Course Curling

To add an element of excitement and challenge, you can create an obstacle course curling game for kids. This activity not only enhances their curling skills but also improves their agility and problem-solving abilities. Follow these steps to set up an obstacle course curling game:

  1. Design the course: Arrange cones, hurdles, or other safe obstacles along the curling path. Ensure that the obstacles are challenging but suitable for the kids’ age and skill level.
  2. Start and finish lines: Mark the starting point and the house (target) at the end of the course.
  3. Gameplay: Instruct the kids to navigate through the obstacle course while sliding their curling stones towards the house. They can use sweeping techniques to adjust the stone’s speed and direction.
  4. Time challenge: To make the game more competitive, set a time limit for each participant. The child who completes the course and reaches the house in the shortest time wins.
  5. Feedback and improvement: Provide constructive feedback to each child, highlighting their strengths and areas for improvement. Encourage them to repeat the obstacle course multiple times to enhance their skills and beat their previous records.

By incorporating these fun curling drills and games into your training sessions, you can introduce young athletes to the sport while keeping them engaged, entertained, and motivated to learn and improve.

Finding Curling Programs for Kids

Local Curling Clubs

One of the best ways to introduce kids to the sport of curling is by getting them involved in local curling clubs. These clubs often offer specific programs or training sessions designed for young athletes. They provide a supportive and nurturing environment where kids can learn the basics of curling and develop their skills. Local curling clubs usually have experienced coaches and instructors who are dedicated to teaching children the fundamentals of the sport. By joining a local curling club, kids can also interact with other young athletes who share the same passion for curling.

School and Community Programs

Many schools and communities have recognized the value of introducing curling to their young athletes. As a result, they have started offering curling programs as part of their physical education curriculum or extracurricular activities. These programs are a great opportunity for kids to try out curling in a familiar and convenient setting. School and community programs often partner with local curling clubs to provide the necessary equipment and coaching. This partnership ensures that kids receive high-quality instruction and can continue their curling journey beyond the school or community program.

Youth Curling Leagues

For young athletes who have already developed a love for curling, joining a youth curling league can be a fantastic next step. Youth curling leagues cater specifically to kids and provide them with the opportunity to compete against their peers in a fun and supportive environment. These leagues often organize regular practices, games, and tournaments, allowing kids to further enhance their skills and experience the thrill of competition. Youth curling leagues also promote teamwork, sportsmanship, and camaraderie among participants, fostering a positive and encouraging atmosphere for young athletes to thrive in.

By exploring local curling clubs, school and community programs, and youth curling leagues, parents and guardians can find various avenues to introduce and support their kids’ involvement in the sport of curling. Each option offers unique benefits and opportunities for young athletes to learn and grow in the exciting world of curling.

In conclusion, introducing curling to young athletes can have numerous benefits. Not only does it provide them with a unique and exciting sport to participate in, but it also promotes physical fitness, teamwork, and strategic thinking. Curling teaches children the importance of concentration, coordination, and communication, all while having fun on the ice. By encouraging kids to try curling, we are fostering a love for sports and encouraging them to lead active and healthy lifestyles. So, let’s give our young athletes the opportunity to discover the thrill of curling and watch them excel in this captivating sport.