Curling Terminology

There are a lot of unusual words used in curling, and we hope we can provide you with some clarification and understanding of most of them.

Back Line The line that runs across the sheet of ice, tangent to the back of the 12 foot ring at the centre line.
Tee Line The line that runs across the sheet of ice through the middle point of the button.
Hog Line The line that runs across the sheet of ice, 27 feet from the back line.
Centre Line The line that runs from the mid-point between the hacks at one end of the ice to the mid-point between the hacks at the other end of the ice.
Hack The device in which the thrower places one foot and uses it to push off from to deliver the rock.
House The rings or circle. Consists of the 12 foot, 8 foot and 4 foot rings and the button.
Button The one foot circle at the centre of the House.
End A portion of a game that is completed when each team has thrown 8 stones and the score has been decided.
Game A game consists of a specific number of Ends, usually 8 or 10.
Sheet The specific playing surface upon which a curling game is played.
Pebble A fine spray of water applied to a sheet of ice before commencing play.
Rink A curling team. Also the building in which the game is played.
Bonspiel A curling competition comprised of a number of different events, usually played over a weekend.
Funspiel A curling competition played entirely for fun, where names may be put together to form teams, usually played during an evening.
Cashspiel A curling competition where the prizes consist of cash.
Broom or Brush Device used to sweep the ice in the path of the stone and may be manufactured with straw, hog or horse hair, or synthetic fibres.
Brushing or Sweeping The act of moving the broom back and forth across the ice in front of a moving stone.
Clean To lightly sweep in front of a moving stone to remove debris only.
Fast or Slick Ice Ice conditions that require very little momentum to produce the weight required.
Slow or Heavy Ice Ice conditions that require more momentum to produce the weight required.
Straight Ice Ice conditions which cause the stone to run straight.
Swingy Ice Ice conditions which cause the stone to curl a great distance.
Reading The Ice The skill by which the skip anticipates the amount a stone will curl relative to the weight required.
Hammer The last stone of an end. Also known as last rock advantage.
Blank End An end in which no points have been scored. The team that had the hammer in this end, retains the hammer in the next end.
Blanking An End The strategy by which a team deliberately blanks an end for the purpose of retaining last rock advantage.
Out-turn The rotation applied to the rock's handle that causes it to turn and curl in a counter-clockwise direction for a right handed player.
In-turn The rotation applied to the rock's handle that causes it to turn and curl in a clockwise direction for a right handed player.
Flipped Out A stone that is released with poor technique which causes it to be wide of the skip's broom.  
Dead Handle, No Handle or Straight Handle A stone that is released with no rotation of the handle.
Spinner A stone that is released so that it rotates many times as it travels down the sheet.
Picked A moving stone that takes a different direction because it has "picked" up some debris on the ice.
Foul The Hog Line or Hog Line Violation A stone that is released from the thrower's hand beyond the hog line.
Burned or Burnt Rock A stone in motion touched by a member of either team or by any part of their equipment.
Take Out Removal of a stone from play by hitting it with another stone.
Double Takeout A takeout shot that removes two of the opponent's stones in one go.
Peel A take out shot that removes a stone from play and where the delivered stone also rolls out of play.
Runner A take out shot that travels very fast.
Chip To hit only a small portion of a stone.
Chip And Roll, or Hit And Roll To hit only a small portion of a stone and roll the delivered stone to another position, usually requiring controlled take out weight.
In-off To hit and roll off a rock that is lying just outside the rings, or in the outer part of the rings, and the delivered rock rolls into the House towards the button.
Roll The movement of a stone after it has struck a stationary stone in play.
Raise When one stone is bumped ahead or advanced by another stone.
Split Raise A stone that raises another stone into the rings and rolls in itself.
Port An opening between two stones that is just large enough to allow for passage of another stone.
Draw Weight The momentum required for a stone to reach the House at the far end to the thrower.
Bumper or Backboard Weight A lightweight takeout thrown with sufficient momentum to reach the backboard at the far end to the thrower.
Control Weight The momentum required on a take out shot to remove a stone from play and also keep the delivered stone in play.
Peel Weight The momentum required on a take out shot to remove a stone from play and also roll the delivered stone out of play.
Biter or Nibbler A stone that just touches the outer edge of the 12 foot circle and which is considered in the House.
Counter or Counting Any stone in the rings or touching the rings which is a potential point.
Shot Rock At any time during an end, the stone which is closest to the button.
Fifth Player The alternate or substitute player on a team.
Spare An alternate player or substitute.