Q:

# How do you play curling?

A:

To play curling, you need two teams of four players dressed in warm, lightweight clothing and very clean running shoes. Any other necessary supplies are likely provided to you by the play location, including stones and brooms. The goal of the game is to have the most stones closest to the goal circle.

## Keep Learning

1. Decide team positions

There are four positions in curling: lead, second, vice and skip. The skip is the captain and should be the most skilled player on the team, because she plays when the most stones are in play. The vice is second in command and should be almost as skilled as the skip, because she directs the lead and second in sweeping the skip's stone.

2. Decide which team goes first

This is usually done by a flip of the coin. The team who goes last has the advantage, because you can knock opponents' stones out of play. Play alternates between teams, with the leads going first, seconds next, then vices and finally the skips.

3. Begin play

The skips go to the circle at the end of the play area. From there, they can see all approaching stones and direct sweepers as necessary. Sweeping ahead of the stones causes them to go straighter and faster. When the skip plays, the vice directs the sweepers. Each player slides two stones towards the goal circle on their turn. Players not sliding stones or directing serve as sweepers, which means the lead and second sweeps three times, the vice sweeps twice, and the skip never sweeps.

4. Score end

The game is divided into ends, usually eight, during which all members of both teams have all stones. The vices determine which team has the most stones closest to the center of the goal circle, and they must agree on the score. The closest team is the only team that scores, and they earn a point for each stone within the goal circle. The scoring team goes first in the next end. The team with the highest score at the end of the game wins.

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