Rookie Programs Enable New Curlers

Nugget Column #05 – Tuesday October 28th, 2014

“Curling is not as easy as it looks on TV.” That and “it’s more slippery than I thought” or “is more physically demanding than I had believed” were common themes that arose at the North Bay Granite Club’s free orientations to curling the weekend before last.

To be honest I’m not sure why people expect curling to come so naturally to them when at no other time have they been required to find balance in the lunge position while moving forward with their centre of balance over a slippery surface.

When in no other daily activity is the goal to displace a forty-pound object one hundred and fifty feet away from its starting position in a single physical motion.

And when in no other sport must you strategically aim away from the target to start in order to land on target in the end.

A beginner curler asked recently: “So it’s sort of like golf right? Either you can hook the ball to the left or slice the ball to the right to have it end up on the green that is straight in front of you.”

To which I replied, “Yes, except you have the option of hitting the ball straight at the hole where as in curling that is an impossibility.”

He understood, but responded jokingly “Maybe it’s an option for you…”

Drawing to the button is more like putting in that the athlete or team has a responsibility to read the movement and sleekness of the surface before setting the object in motion.

If the speed and direction (referred to in curling as “weight” and “line”) are correct, the shot will be made. Despite the fact that in curling you only have one chance at “sinking the put”, the gain is in the sweepers’ ability to drastically influence the outcome of the attempt.

After years of playing this great sport it is sometimes difficult to sympathize with the struggles of beginner curlers, because we forget that nothing to do with curling is common sense.

It is for that reason that we offer beginner focused programming including leagues, lessons and events that mitigate the fear of facing a new challenge.

Our Rookie League on Thursday nights has commenced its instructional phase while league play will follow the Canadian Mixed Curling Championships that take over the club from November 8th to the 15th.

We will continue to introduce rookie curlers through instructional phases that filter into the Rookie League as the season progresses. Your next chance to get involved begins Thursday November 27th with four weeks of coaching and scrimmages.

The Kinsmen Club of North Bay is organizing a Rookie Bonspiel for our new curlers while fundraising for community-based projects and Cystic Fibrosis research efforts in Canada.

To register, mark your calendars for Sunday November 23rd and log on to thekinsmenclubofnorthbay.ca. Tickets are $25 and registration closes November 17th. Everyone is welcome to support this great cause.

 

Bobby Ray
General Manager
North Bay Granite Club