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House Call


House Call: Watching curling brings us together

The year is 1988 and I am nine years old. It is a monumental year for the sport of curling and it is a monumental year for my mother, Marilyn Barraclough. Curling is finally being showcased at the Olympic Winter Games in Calgary and my mom is President of the Canadian Ladies Curling Association, which would merge with the men’s organization a few years later to form the current, all-encompassing Canadian Curling Association.

 
House Call: Tips for take-outs

A new curler sits in the hack staring at her skip at the far end. Her worst nightmare of a shot is being called; a take-out.

 
House Call: Five great gifts for the curler in your life

Finding the perfect gift for somebody special can be a huge challenge. If that special someone happens to be curler look no further. Here are some great gift ideas to light up their eyes come Christmas morning.

 
House Call: Seniors step off ice for floor curling

There’s no ice at the Griffiths Seniors Centre in Black Diamond, but the curlers could care less. They’re floor curling – no ice required.

 
House Call: Advice from an icemaker

After a game of curling, there often seems to be a disconnect between the ice conditions and how players think the ice affected their game. Time and time again missed shots are blamed on poor ice conditions.

 
House Call: A new age for team building

Picture it. You arrive at the curling club, partial team in tow. Excitement crackles in the air as old friends come together for another curling season. Except, you have a problem. Your team is one player short.

 
House Call: Think about sitting on your curling club’s Board of Directors

Most curling clubs are guided by a Board of Directors. If you’re new to curling or you’ve been a member for only a few years, you might feel you don’t have anything to offer the Board. This couldn’t be further from the truth.

 
House Call: Five things you can do to help your curling club

Curling clubs often operate on a shoestring budget…or less. Sure, collecting dues from members helps to offset some of the operational costs, but there are many other expenses. For the most part, clubs try to offer as many inexpensive or free events as possible. So keep this in mind: it is the job of members to help make their club a better place, just as it is the job of the curling centre to offer a friendly, clean facility with good ice.

 
House Call: A word about swearing, smack talk, broom bashing and other tomfoolery

Curling is a game. No match, that I know of (though perhaps it would make good reality TV), has ever been to the death. In league play there is no car on the line; in fact, there’s very little money on the line. At most we’re usually talking enough money to cover the bar tab after the game.

 
House Call: Avoid the Seasonal Curling Zombie Virus

We all love the time of year when the Scotties and the Brier dominate our TV watching schedules for weeks on end. The players are great sweepers and throwers, the shot-making is superb, and the strategy is rich with complexity.

 
House Call: Four-rock rule for positive reinforcement

Learning something new, especially when you’re an adult, is tough. If you’ve chosen to learn how to curl as an adult you may, on occasion, become frustrated. Here is a simple technique you can use to build confidence and increase motivation.

 
House Call: Six Ways to Be a Better Sweeper

I have been asked many times if sweeping actually makes a difference or if it’s just a giant conspiracy to keep the players who aren’t throwing or skipping busy. The truth is this – sweeping can make a huge difference if it is done with proper technique. Unfortunately sweeping is often dismissed as something not worth practicing and some players do not develop the skills needed to be truly effective.

 
House Call: My Wish for Curlers in 2013 and Beyond

I have one wish for the curling community at large for 2013 and hopefully beyond. My wish is simple. One word says it all: Acceptance.

 
House Call: Five Ways to Combat Slow Play

Slow play affects players at all levels. There are even teams at the Brier and Scotties who push limits and take their sweet, sweet time when playing. Slow Play is best avoided as it makes the game drag on and on and sucks the fun right out of the sport.

 
House Call: Victorian Victory

Presentations by the Canadian Curling Association about the Adult Get Started in Curling League pilot program in Ottawa convinced Len Stewart to start, not just one program in Greater Victoria, but four!

 

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