Young people who wish to participate in a sport besides hockey and ringette this winter need look no further.
The Lacombe Curling Club is gearing up for another season of fun ‘Learn to Curl’ programs for younger residents.
“The time commitment isn’t as demanding as sports like hockey,” said Gwen Farnsworth, who organizes the learn to curl programs.
According to Farnsworth, many young people, not to mention their parents, choose to curl because they enjoy the relatively small time commitment required to get into it.
“You’re only really expected to be there on Friday nights to do the learn to curl and finish off with an end or two of the game, so there’s no commitments for a full weekend or anything else unless they choose to go into bonspiels,” she said.
The learn to curl nights run on Fridays from 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. beginning on Oct. 23rd.
“It’s also a lifelong sport. So they can begin at six and finish at 106,” Farnsworth said.
The program is designed to gradually introduce young curlers to the sport.
“We take the young curlers through a typical ‘how to curl.’ We break the delivery down into three different components so it’s not as difficult to get going. Once they establish the first phase, which is how to push out from the Hack and slide out on the ice; then we can progress to introducing the rocks,” she said.
She also noted that the program eventually also introduces some strategy to new curlers because it is an essential component of the game.
“We try to keep it as much fun as we possibly can,” she said.
The program aims to provide 10-12 weeks of instruction and games before finishing off with a bonspiel for the participants.
Farnsworth noted that she sees participants progress relatively quickly when they are in the program.
“The curling ice is quite a bit different than the pond ice or hockey ice. It has kind of a pebble on top of it. It’s harder than most of the other ice,” she said.
“They’ve really got to have a lot of body control to do curling. It’s amazing that some of the kids, when they get there, are falling all over the place and by the end of the first lesson they’re up and down the ice like nobody’s business.”
Anyone wishing to register their child for the program can do so by calling the Lacombe Curling Club at (403) 782-6277.