Coaches Corner - 2
Editor: Chris Daffern
CURLING COACHES CORNER – SWEEPING/BRUSHING – HAARRD!
This Rules review is about sweeping and arises from a Member’s question about who has priority over sweeping the rocks of either team.
First of all, keep in mind that the purpose of sweeping or brushing is to keep the path of the running stone clean, to prolong its momentum or to keep a rock from curling. Any brushing action that has the intent of leaving debris in front of a running stone to slow it down is illegal.
From Rule 11 of The Rules of Curling For General Play, here are some of the highlights.
#1 – Behind the tee line, a team has first privilege of sweeping its own stone BUT it must not obstruct or prevent their opposition from sweeping; so if it is not your intent to sweep any stones, get out of the way.
#2 - You are not permitted to sweep your opposition’s stone until the front end of their stone has reached the farther tee line from the delivering end of the ice (i.e. the tee line at the scoring end); and sweeping shall only take place behind the tee line. This is a frequently observed rules violation.
#3 - When your opposition is throwing, only your vice or skip is permitted to sweep or brush your own stone behind the tee line - NOT your second or lead. (Your lead and second should not be anywhere near the scoring end house. Their position is between the hoglines, in single file, along the sidelines.)
#4 - Behind the tee line, only one player from each team may sweep or brush at one time. This may be the skip or vice of either team or the lead or second of the delivering team.
#5 – There must be brush head movement in the sweeping motion. "Snowplowing" without brush head movement is illegal. The final brushing motion must be away from the running stone. “Dumping”, simply lifting the brush and leaving debris in front of the running stone, is illegal.
#6 – A stationary stone MUST be set in motion before any sweeping occurs; i.e. “warming up” the ice before the stationary rock has been set in motion is illegal.
A variation on this last item is the subject of Bill Tschirhart’s blog, “The Most Common Rule Violation”.
In conclusion, there are written rules and there are unwritten standards of fair competition and etiquette. Players are expected to know and apply the rules in an impartial manner, always keeping in mind that the purpose of the rules is to ensure that the game is played in an orderly and fair manner.