How Long is a Curling Game?
In curling, games consist of ends where teams alternate throwing stones down the sheet. The number of ends played in a game can vary based on the curling club, league, or bonspiel. In general, most curling games last a total of eight or ten ends.
Eight End Games
Eight end games are the most common amongst local curling clubs, and usually takes about two hours to play. This assumes that an end can be completed in 15 minutes. As a new curler, you will most likely be playing curling games that last eight ends.
For curling clubs that play on arena ice (which is not specifically dedicated for curling), it is important to setup the ice quickly so that all eight ends can be fit into the curling club's ice time slot. There are some cases in which eight ends cannot be completed due to timing restrictions.
Ten End Games
Ten end games are the most common for competitive national and international play, and usually take about two and a half hours to play (recall that 15 minutes per end is being budgeted). As a new curler, you will probably not play ten end games. However, you will definitely see them on television. In national and international play, there are two formats that utilize ten end games of curling, men's and women's curling.
This estimate of two and a half hours does not account for the break after the fifth end, or any timeouts that may be called during the game. Thus, a ten end game of curling with these additional time factors will probably last closer to two hours and 45 minutes.
Mixed Doubles Format
There is a new format of curling called Mixed Doubles. This format involves one male and one female player. Instead of throwing eight stones, only five are thrown per team per end. Out of all of the competitive curling formats, mixed doubles is the only one that lasts eight ends. Considering that fewer stones are being thrown and fewer ends are being played, these games are usually completed in under two hours.