Perhaps you’ve only ever seen Curling during the Olympics, or maybe you’re from one of the few places in the world where you’ve had a chance to curl before – either way, it’s easy to get involved in curling in Düsseldorf, home to Germany’s oldest curling club.
League Organizer of the Düsseldorf Curling Club, Alexander Wilhelm is here to give us a bit more information on how to get involved and why we should all consider spending a little time on the rink!
Unlike many historic traditions in Germany, curling has actually only been played here since 1961, although its origins date back to medieval Scotland. From there, where it is still popular, it spread to other countries, in particular, Canada, which today boasts the most players worldwide. As such, a number of the club members in Düsseldorf are English speakers from Canada, the UK, and other places.
So, here’s how to get involved in Curling in Düsseldorf
Although it may sound like hurling an almost twenty kilo (44-pound) rock down a 45m (145 ft) long sheet of ice would require feats of strength, the rock glides quite easily and curling is not very physically demanding such that almost anyone can play – though you can get in a good workout when sweeping. Players aged 12 and up can join the club in Düsseldorf and be playing games against people of all ages with very little training. There is a fair bit of strategy involved as well, which needs to be adapted to the changing ice conditions at the Brehmstrasse ice rink where the club plays. Practices and games are held every Tuesday from 8:00-10pm and Sundays from 7:30-9:30 pm during the season, which runs from September to April.
Sign me up
To try curling, the club offers periodic beginner courses. The next dates are Feb. 19th, Feb. 21st and March 7th (2017) at 8 pm on Tuesday and 7:30 pm on Sunday. Registration is required as spaces are limited – this can be done by e-mailing myself, Alexander Wilhelm. All you need are running shoes and some comfortable pants; the club provides stones, brooms and a “slider” that helps you glide down the ice. The courses are free for students (school, university or those in apprenticeships) and only 10€ for others. During the two-hour session, you’ll learn the basic techniques (explained for you in English) and compete in your first game!
For those who have curled before, just contact the club and you can have several trial sessions before committing to a membership, which, at 120€/year is fairly inexpensive – children and students are always free of charge.
For more details, please visit the website of the Düsseldorf Curling Club.
It’s not as much fun as trying it yourself, but it is a good chance to see curling live in action is at the Radschläger Tournament which the club hosts every year, attracting a total of 12 teams from places near and far such as Cologne, Frankfurt, Luxembourg, the Netherlands and Switzerland. This year’s tournament takes place on February 11th and 12th at the Brehmstrasse rink, with games on Saturday from 1-3 pm and 4-6 pm and on Sunday from 8:45 am until 10:45 am & 11:15 am until 13:15 pm. Entrance for spectators is free.
Looking forward to seeing you on the ice! Cheers, Alexander Wilhelm
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