Curling Terminology

Curling, probably more than any other sport, has its own unique terminology (like hurry hard and burning a rock, among others). Here are the key curling words and phrases you need to know to blend in at your next bonspiel:

  • Blank end: An end where no points are scored.
  • Bonspiel: A tournament in which curlers compete.
  • Burning a Stone / rock: A rules infraction that happens when a player touches a stone as it’s traveling down the sheet.
  • Button: The very center of the target rings or house.
  • Cashspiel: A tournament in which curlers compete for money.
  • Delivery: The action of throwing a stone to the other end of the playing surface.
  • Eight-ender: A perfect end where every one of the team’s stones scores a point.
  • End: The way a curling game is divided. An end is like an inning in a baseball game. A curling game has either eight or ten ends.
  • Gripper: The sole of one of your curling shoes. It helps you keep your footing on the ice. See slider.
  • Hammer: The last rock of the end.
  • Hack: The foothold in the ice you use to push off from when you deliver the stone.
  • House: Also known as the rings, this is the name of the giant bull’s eye at either end of the sheet of ice. It consists of a set of concentric circles, called the 12-foot, 8-foot, 4-foot, and the Button.
  • Hurry hard: A directive given to sweepers by the skip or third, to begin sweeping.
  • Rink: A curling team; also the name of a curling facility.
  • Rock: Also known as a stone, the granite playing utensil that a curler delivers. Regular-sized rocks weigh approximately 44 pounds.
  • Sheet: The frozen playing surface on which the game is played.
  • Slider: The sole of one of your curling shoes. It helps you move or slide along the ice.
  • Tee line: The line on the playing surface that runs through the middle of the house.
  • Weight: The amount of force used to deliver a stone.


Information from: