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With winter now upon us our focus shifts toward those sports that are gearing up at this time of year. Curling is just one of them and could reasonably lay claim to our national sport. Originating in the 16th century on the frozen ponds of Scotland it is hugely popular with over 12000 curlers in over 600 clubs and 2 million curlers worldwide.


Whilst injury incidence is lower than other winter sports and it is widely regarded as a safe sport, injuries do occur. Two studies – one from the USA on recreational curlers and one from our own Scottish Institute of Sport regarding elite athletes – have detailed injury patterns.

They had similar findings, in that most injuries are related to overuse, were mainly muscular in nature and were less through falls on the ice.

The knee is most likely to be injured (54% of injuries), followed by the lower back (33%) and the shoulder (20%). The nature of the sport involves periods of low flexed spinal and leg positions during sweeping and whilst in the tuck position on the hack (the block used to deliver stones) which may account for the back and neck issues. Intensive sweeping was thought to be a greater risk factor than delivering the stone in terms of shoulder injury incidence. In addition, they also found that a high body mass index was associated with an increase risk of injury.

So injury prevention is key in any sport and curling is no exception. Given the findings above, getting warm in a cold ice rink before you play is key. This link to the warm up recommended by the physiotherapists at Scottish Curling is a great way to prepare

Finally, if you have any injuries and need help, our Physiotherapist Fiona Begg has many years of curling experience having competed at junior level so understands the demands of a sport than is much harder than it may look!

Reeser J.C, Berg R.L. Self reported injury patterns among competitive curlers in the United States: a preliminary investigation into the epidemiology of curling injuries. Br J Sports Med 2004;38:e29 doi:10.1136/bjsm.2003.010298


Injury patterns in high-performance curlers (the sport has 2 million players worldwide although has 200x less publications than Aussie Rules Football!)

#Curling #Physiotherapy #SportsInjuries #BestPractice #Edinburgh #Scotland



The focus on #Curling continues today with a lovely paper looking at the Psychosocial Benefits of Curling for Older Adults.


Curling for Confidence: Psychophysical Benefits of Curling for Older Adults from Stone et al in 2018.


The study compared high-experience (20+ years) and low-experience (<20 years) curlers (aged 60+ years) with older adult noncurlers on measures of daily functionality, balance confidence, and perceptions of the ageing process.


While no significant differences were found between high- and low-experience curlers, any level of experience reported significantly better functionality, physical confidence, and ageing attitudes compared to noncurlers.


The results suggest that any level of curling experience can enhance older adult psychophysical well-being, and warrants consideration for physical activity promotion and falls prevention programs.


We are always keen to encourage all age groups to take up physical activity and in a time of year when some reduce their activities, maybe curling could be the answer for you??!


If you have any injury worries prior to curling then come consult our #ExpertsInSport

#Physiotherapy #Curling #Edinburgh #SportsInjuries


A Biomechanical Assessment of the Sliding Motion of Curling Delivery in Elite and Subelite Curlers

This study examined the technical characteristics of sliding performance from push-off until stone release in curling delivery. Five elite performance level curlers (> 7 years experience) and five subelite level curlers (< 3 years experience) were analyzed during the action of delivery of a curling stone.

There were significant differences in the gliding distance and the rate of changes in velocity profiles of body centre of mass between the two groups.

Larger ankle dorsiflexion and greater contact area of the sliding foot were observed in elite curlers. The data from the study suggests a superior ability of elite curlers to maintain a regulated movement speed and balance control during the performance of a curling stone delivery.

Having the necessary movement and strength in the lower limbs to maintain good form during stone delivery could make quite a difference to performance. Our expert #physiotherapists can carry out a comprehensive assessment of the available joint movement, then advise on exercises to increase that movement as well as to strengthen your lower limbs.

Call now for appointments – 0131 313 3999

#ExpertsInSport #ExpertsInSPACE


Kyoung-Seok Yoo; Hyun-Kyung Kim; Jin-Hoon Park


Department of Sport & Leisure Studies, Chodang University, Chunnam, South Korea
Department of Physical Education, Sungshin Women¿s University, Seoul, South Korea
Department of Physical Education, Korea University, Seoul, South Korea


Journal of Applied Biomechanics (J APPL BIOMECH), Dec2012; 28(6): 694-700. (7p)


#Curling #Physiotherapy #Edinburgh
Written by Space Clinics

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