In curling, the weight describes the speed and force applied to a stone when it is delivered down the ice. There are multiple types of weights that curlers used to determine where and how to throw a stone. It’s important to know the weights and practice them consistently so that you can throw stones with more accuracy.
Types of Curling Weights
- Back House Weight: Speed to reach the back of the house.
- Draw Weight: Momentum for the stone to reach the house.
- Front House Weight: Momentum for the stone to reach the front of the house.
- Hack Weight: Momentum for the stone to reach the hack.
- Guard Weight: Momentum required for the stone to reach between the hog line and front of the house.
After the stone is delivered the skip is responsible for communicating with the sweepers about the desired weight. A stopwatch can be used to measure the weight by calculating the split time or time it takes for a stone to go from one place to the other on the ice.
The Number System
The sweepers can usually tell the weight of the stone within the first few seconds. Since the skip is at the other end of the ice, they may not be able to determine the weight of the stone right away. One system that some curling teams use is a number system to convey where the stone will end up based on its current weight. The image below illustrates the number system.
A guard is assigned a number 1, 2, or 3. If the guard is close to the hog line, it will be a 1. If the guard is closer to the house, it will be a 3. Stones that will end up in the front of the house are assigned a number 4 (Top 12 Foot), 5 (Top 8 Foot), 6 (Top 4 Foot), or 7 (Button). Stones that will end up in the back of the house are assigned a number 8 (Back 4 Foot), 9 (Back 8 Foot), or 10 (Back 12 Foot). Any stone that will go through the house and pass the backline is assigned a 11.