What is Shuffleboard?
Shuffleboard dates back to the 1400s when people used to slide groats, British coins, across a table or bar surface. The game slowly evolved to other coins, and then to larger objects, and eventually, around the 1940s, becoming the puck used now. Originally seen as a crude bar game, once it came to the United States with the Founding Fathers it began to grow into a nationwide phenomenon with many large competitions still occuring now.
The goal of shuffleboard is to gain more points than your opponent. Each side of the board has a grid with numbers ranging from 1 to 10 depending on the board. Players must try to get their pucks into the higher numbered sections which are at the end of the board. They will push their puck to the other side of the board as far as it can go without falling off of the board and into what is called the alley.
The team that has the puck farthest down the board wins that frame, and they gain points for the location of that puck. Pucks are pushed with a stick called a hammer that has a curved piece on the end that fits the diameter of the puck. Pucks are also called weights because they are heavier, making it easier for them to stay on the board.
A common strategy in shuffleboard is to knock the opponent's puck off of the board and into the alley. This way, they have less of a change of having the farthest puck on the board. Players often prefer to slide their pucks second so that they will have the opportunity to move their opponent's puck. In the next frame, the order switches so that both players get a fair chance.