What Is Curling?

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What is curling? One time the Olympics were on and this sport came on that used brooms and a thing that looked like an oversized paperweight. I wondered what it was. I found out it was curling and the oversized paperweight was a 42-pound "stone".

It is disputed when and where curling was invented. The Scottish say that they invented it back in 1511, while the Dutch say that they invented it in the 15th century. No matter who invented it, the Scottish are the ones who made the game big. It became a recreational activity back in the 1600's and became a craze in the 1800's. In that time period, there were two clubs formed in North America, one in Canada and one in the United States. The Royal Montreal Curling Club was established in 1807 in, of course, Montreal. The Orchard Lake Curling Club came 25 years later in Detroit, Michigan.

The sport curling can be compared to the best is lawn bowling. The ice sheet, which is the playing surface in curling, is 46 yards long and 14 feet wide. On ends of the sheet, there are rings and that part is called the house. The center of the rings, which is the goal, is called the button. There are 4 players on the team and they have specific positions. The positions are skip, the captain, second, third, and lead. One of the players glides the stone down the sheet while the 2 other players zamboni sweep the path in front to clear any debris that may impede the stone or to make the stone go further. When they want the stone to turn, or in curling terms curl, they don't sweep and the miniature pebbles on the sheet make the stone turn. A game of curling consists of 10 ends, or rounds, with each player getting 2 throws at the house. The team with the stones closest to the button gets a point for each stone that is close.

There are over 15,000 members of curling clubs in the United States with the biggest one residing in Minnesota with 700 members. The biggest club in Canada, however, has 20,000 members. In 1992, curling was introduced into the Olympics as a demonstration sport and in 1998 it became a medal sport.

All in all, I found curling to be a very interesting sport and I found that I may want to participate in it one day