Every four years, when the winter Olympics come around, the world is exposed to a sport that not many people see very often. Its uniqueness has drawn the curiosity of many and often sparks an interest in a desire to try the sport.
And the health beneﬁts are good for the whole body.
Here are the Top 10 from Health Fitness Revolution and author of the book ReSYNC Your Life Samir Becic:
Aerobic ﬁtness: Working out in the cold can burn more calories, and since curling is played on ice and players are constantly competing and running back and forth trying to hit a goal, it will deﬁnitely increase your heart rate and improve the cardiovascular system.
Strengthens your muscles: Sliding on the ice and being in a constant squatting position strengthens the calves, glutes and quadriceps. You can also get a good core workout by practicing curling and sweeping vigorously ahead of the stone.
Social interaction: In many communities, curling clubs are among only a few recreational resources available. It becomes a place where they can talk with others, build friendships, and take leadership roles, increasing both their conﬁdence and resiliency when coping with challenges.
Flexibility: The team member who delivers the stone in a curling game often stays very low to the ice before pushing the stone. Staying this low to the ice requires a great deal of ﬂexibility.
Speed: Like any other sport, curling on ice also requires you to train to be faster. Players slide around the rink before a game to increase their speed.
Precision: Curling requires precision. It has been nicknamed as “chess on ice” for the amount of strategy involved in winning a game. This is one of the reasons it is so popular among both players and spectators.
Stretching and toning legs: Stretching and toning your legs is a way the players workout before playing the game. The stretching and toning not only helps with ﬂexibility for the game but it also carries out in day-to-day activities.
Promotes weight-loss: Sliding on ice burns a lot of calories, yet because you are playing on ice, you don’t perspire as much. Curling requires a lot of skating back and forth, which burns calories.
It can be done by anyone, including the disabled: Curling is a sport that can be enjoyed by everyone, no matter the age or ability. In fact, the Paralympic Games feature a Wheelchair Curling event.
Fun and interactive: It is a sport for both men and women and is played by both adults and kids of all ages. Not only is it a great way to meet people who have the same interest in curling, but it can be a great networking medium. In addition, many people with depression turn towards curling because it’s a fun and interactive sport that opens up their social realm.
Minnesota High School tournament (2009)
U.S. National Mixed Championship in 2013
U.S. Men’s and Women’s Junior National Championships in 2016. The winners became the US representatives at the Worlds Championship in Denmark that year.
When competitors and their family members run into members of GRC, not only do they highly praise their trip to the Willmar area as memorable and fantastic, some have even expressed a desire to move here should the chance arise for them. GRC has been asked to hold more national championships by the USCA but has had to decline due to limited availability in ice time and timing. These events tie up a sheet of ice for up to two weeks. GRC would enjoy more opportunities to do this but understands the need to schedule these well in advance due to current ice limitations. Unfortunately, many of the opportunities happen in less than a year’s notice. Even though GRC is a small group, we have been asked by the USCA to host more national events, proving that we can compete with the larger venues.
GRC has the highest percentage of USCA certiﬁed oﬃcials of any curling association.
GRC members who have been certiﬁed as oﬃcials are highly sought out. When other clubs have high proﬁle events, they have not been able to provide the depth of oﬃciating that GRC has.
GRC has two of the top oﬃcials in the world. They have oﬃciated at several US National Championships, World Junior Championships, World’s Men’s and the 2018 Olympics
GRC has one of the top three Ice Technicians in the US. In the past year he has made ice numerous National Curling events from Hawaii to Florida. He also developed the curriculum to teach other curling groups on how to make and improve their ice across the US.
GRC has one of the most prestigious Curling instructors in the US. He has traveled the country to teach at other Associations and youth events.
GRC had two members participated in the U.S. Junior National Championship and U18 tournaments this past year.
GRC beneﬁts the area.
GRC holds two Bonspiel’s (tournaments, New Year’s and Novice). These two Bonspiels in the past few years have brought hundreds of people from outside of the Willmar Lakes area in. GRC plans to increase these events with the new facility. GRC hosts numerous Open Curling nights on Saturday nights in conjunction with WCER. This past year GRC hosted 13 such nights. WCER pays for the ice time and GRC provides the ice crew and instructors at no cost.
GRC also holds youth and adaptive curling and instruction each Thursday afternoon.
GRC’s volunteerism runs high oﬀ the ice. Members have helped in many local eﬀorts including Highway Ditch Cleanup, the Robbins Island Playground project, and Robbins Island spring cleanup.
GRC gives back to the community through scholarship funds to area high school graduates.