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House Call: Curling for Everyone – Wheelchairs, Special Olympics, and Stick Curling

Wednesday, 26 October 2011 - Posted by Kim Perkins

It has often been said that curling is a sport you can play for life. Never has this been more true. Recent years have brought the advent of Wheelchair Curling, Special Olympics Curling, and Stick Curling. All of these developments have allowed more and more people the chance to get out on the ice and play the game.

Wheelchair Curling

Wheelchair curling demonstration at the 2011 Tim Hortons Brier (Photo Michael Burns)

Many clubs across the country now offer Wheelchair Curling. Some of the rules differ from the conventional game, such as the elimination of brushing, but the competition in this division of the sport is still fierce. The upper competitive echelons even lead to a much-coveted Canadian Championship title.

Recreational wheelchair curling programs are also available, because not everyone wants to be a competitive curler. For more information about this fantastic, inclusive game try visiting Wheelchaircurling.com. The following article also offers information about how to get involved in the sport: Wheelchair Curling – How to Play and How to Get Involved.

You may also want to watch this great series of instructional videos featuring top competitive wheelchair curler Chris Daw, my good friend, and super-coach, Ernie Comerford (he was actually one of my first coaches), and aspiring wheelchair curler Shannon Wilcox.

Special Olympics Curling

Across the country, individuals with intellectual disabilities can take to the ice in Special Olympics Curling. This wonderful program offers a place for young people and adults to take part in curling either competitively or recreationally.

The Special Olympics national website offers information about how to find a program in your region and also general information about competitions, rules, and programs.

Stick Curling

For individuals not able to crouch down in the hack, the introduction of Stick curling has welcomed many new curlers to the sport and also helped to keep individuals in the sport much longer. Curlers using the stick can play in conventional leagues or they can compete with others using the stick in a number of different versions of the game developed purely for those using the stick. This website, Sturling.net, offers a wealth of information about equipment, technique, competition, and community.

More and more ways for everyone to get involved with the great sport of curling are developing every day. If there is an inclusive program I’ve missed. please let me know. I would love to provide information about it in the future.




About Kim Perkins
Kim Perkins is the Head Curling Professional at the Calgary Winter Club. She has been teaching adults and children how to curl for 20 years. Kim wrote a children’s book about curling called The Adventures of Trefor the Curling Rock and is the proud inventor of Broom Charms www.trefor.ca.

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