Free Guard Zone Rule (fgz)The "free guard zone" rule influences shot selection relative to the first four "stones" of an "end" and impacts strategy decisions throughout the course of a game.
ScoreThe "score" in relation to the end you are playing will greatly influence shot selection decisions.
AbilityThe skills of opponents and teammates required to successfully play both offense and defence are critical to planning strategy and making appropriate shot selection.Knowing the position-by-position strengths and weaknesses of your team and your opposition will have a great impact on the strategy you employ. The key element is knowing how to maximize your own team’s strengths.
The ability to think on your feet and make shot selection decisions based on the six major factors that influence shot selection is very demanding and is influenced by the number of "stones" in play. "Teams" are constantly faced with re-evaluating their game plan and shot selection options as they analyse the relative “risk vs. reward”.
Effective skipping requires the ability to think two or three shots ahead, thus the common reference that curling is “chess on ice”.