equipment - Curling Basics - curling explained; excellent for beginners

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Curling, like every sport, requires the proper equipment to ensure comfort, safety and success but Curling does not involve costly equipment purchases.
Participants can start learning the game while wearing warm clothes that are easy to move in and rubber-soled sneakers.
Brooms/brushes and sliders/grippers mostly are available for your use in the club.
Also the stones are provided by the clubs.
Here are some details to the equipment that is needed
A curling stone must be able to resist abrasion and be tough, dense, resilient, uniform in color and non-absorbent.  Granite from Scotland is used almost exclusively.

A curling stone

is circular in shape, made of hard, dense granite

can weigh between a minimum of 38 pounds and maximum of 44 pounds (20 kg)

is provided by the clubs

costs about € 4.000,-  to € 10.000,- (for a set of 8 stones)

Each side of a curling stone has a concave area commonly referred to as the cup.
The edge of the cup is appropriately called the running edge and it is this thin edge that actually contacts the ice surface.
The running edge is not polished like the rest of the stone, but is comparatively rough.
For curling to be played correctly the running edge must never be allowed to wear smooth or be damaged.
When the running surface has become smooth from wear, the stone must be reconditioned to restore a like-new running edge.
When the edge loses its texture, the stone will curl very little because there is nothing on the edge to cause friction with the ice. As a result, the stones will glide a lot further when they are slowing down, making it difficult to judge weight when delivering or brushing.

The dull grey band around the greatest circumference of the stone is the striking band and is designed to absorb the shock when one stone strikes another. On a new stone the striking band is a slightly convex shape.
Over years of pounding, the striking band may wear away to a flatter contact surface. Flat spots on the striking bands are caused when the granite beneath the surface has been crushed as a result of an extreme impact. Eventually the outside granite will break loose and a large chunk will be missing from the outside of the stone. When chunks come out of the striking band, the stones are non-repairable.
Proper care of curling stones is essential. Curlers should not take the stones off the ice surface. The running edges can be easily damaged from contact with abrasive surfaces. The ice technician is the only person who should decide where the stones are to be placed when they are off the ice surface. Curlers need to be encouraged to keep the playing surface as clean as possible by ensuring their footwear is clean.

Curlingstein Unterseite
The curling brush is used to sweep the ice surface in the path of the stone.
Sweeping is done for several reasons: to reduce friction underneath the stone, to decrease the amount of "curl", and to clean debris from the stone's path.
It is also often used as a balancing aid during "delivery of the stone".
Synthetic brushes are the most popular and are usually made with a nylon fabric. Brushes are also made with either hog hair or horsehair. Various adaptations to the “standard” brush including handle shape, handle width and brush head angle have been made by manufacturers in their attempts to make brushing easier and more effective.

Brush heads come in assorted sizes and shapes. Variable handle/head angle brushes are the most common. Brush handles come in different sizes but common dimensions are forty-eight inches (120 cm) in length and one inch (2.5 cm) in diameter. Handles may be made of wood or fiberglass.

Caused by some aggressive brush heads (pads), the World Curling Federation (WCF) has announced new rules in order to make sure, that the players abilities remain the decisive factor at top curling events (like for example the world championships); the new WCF rules can be found here.

austauschbare Wischköpfe
To be able to deliver a stone with a flat-footed slide, a curler requires a proper sliding shoe, one having a slick, low friction material that covers the entire sole and heel.
Various types of slider materials are available. One example of a synthetic material that is very popular is Teflon plastic. Teflon sliders come in a variety of thicknesses. Generally, the thicker the Teflon, the faster the slider. Stainless steel sliders are the “fastest” sliders available and are used by a small percentage of players.

Entry-level curlers may begin with a low-friction plastic tape applied to the sole of an athletic shoe. Duct tape, or any type of plastic tape may be used. Plastic tape has reasonably good sliding properties but is not overly fast, allowing the beginner to adjust to develop balance easily. It is important that both the sole and the heel of the sliding shoe are covered with the sliding material because both are in contact with the ice during the delivery. Quickness of the sliding surface becomes important as the curler’s ability to slide develops and improves. While it is quite acceptable to learn how to slide and to develop confidence with a material that is not overly fast, once the basics have been learned reasonably well, the curler should progress to a less resistant material that will allow for a much longer slide delivery.

The sliding shoe should only be worn on the curling ice. Protectors should be placed over the slider to prevent damage to it while walking off the ice. A very effective type of slider protector is made of soft rubber. It can also double as a gripper or anti-slider for the sliding shoe when the curler is brushing.

While a slider is essential, it is equally important to have the non-sliding shoe equipped with a surface that will grip the ice well. Common types of grippers/anti-sliders are soles made of a pebbled type of rubber or those made of soft crepe-like rubber.
Slider Anti-Slider
It is advisable to wear warm, loose fitting clothing. Layering is also  suggested so you can remove outer garments to avoid overheating.

Other types of equipment include:

A stopwatch to time the stones over a fixed distance to calculate their speed. Stopwatches can be attached either to clothing or the broom

Curling gloves to keep the hands warm and improve grip on the broom
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