Throwing Rocks at Houses -- About Delivery
One of the changes to the Sport of Curling is in the delivery.
Back in the day, the rock was lifted off the ice and swung back behind the hack. Watch elite Curlers and you'll see this all the time -- they were taught to curl before the no-lift delivery became the standard that everyone is taught.
It takes a lot more energy than the no-lift delivery, it's more difficult.
... and teaching (as we've done the last three weeks) is about delivery -- at least for me. You can pick up the game by playing, but good fundamental skills have to be taught.
Yesterday I read Kim Perkins' article on the CCA website where she talks about transitioning from lifting the stone to no-lift delivery, and what she says applies to the beginning curler as much as applies to retraining veterans who have been lifting the rock for decades.
Kim's steps to proper delivery:
1) Line up your toe with the skip's broom: the broom is your target and pointing your toe at the broom is the beginning of proper aim.
2) Line up the rock with your hack foot: this is the beginning of proper alignment. While there is one reason for the lift delivery (you need room for the backswing), we see novices do this for a totally different reason -- with good alignment your arm is directly over your knee in the hack, and it feels really awkward. When you raise your hips to deliver, this problem goes away.
3) Keep your shoulders square.
4) When you lift your hips, draw the stone to your hack foot, keeping on the line from your hack foot through the skip's broom.
5) When you push out, bring your foot in behind the stone. Your weight should be centered directly above the sliding foot.
Proper alignment is when there is a straight line from the skip's broom, through the stone and both feet to the hack.
... and this is one reason I enjoy teaching Curling. It makes me think about my own delivery, and how to be a better Curler.
League starts this Saturday!