Return To Play Plan


Hello Thistle Family

We have been working hard to make your return to curling a positive experience. There will be some changes to our beloved game this season. (To view our official document please use this link;  Covid-19 Document .)

The biggest change at the Thistle will be our ice surface. It will be 6 sheets, not 8, allowing adequate space to comfortably physical distance while playing.

(Please see the ice surface illustration included below.)

Another change will be the requirement to wear face masks while in the curling club (in compliance with Edmonton’s bylaw). They may be removed once you are on the ice surface ready to play your game or while eating or drinking.

At times we may have to limit the number of spectators/visitors. Please see our Covid-19 Spectator/Visitor Policy.

New Rules for Physical Distancing Curling

Curling Canada created Return to Play Guidelines allowing curling to operate as a ‘physical distancing’ sport (like golf), not a ‘cohort’ sport (like hockey). These suggestions will be implemented with the necessary adjustments to ensure we meet AHS Public Health requirements. As these requirements continue to change our return to play plan will also change accordingly.

As of today, August 12, 2020, the Curling Canada suggestions we will be implementing are:  (taken from Curling Canada’s Return to Play Guidelines, page 9, available at


    • Instead of a handshake, give a friendly wave or tap brooms to start the game.
    • Do not use coins to decide the last stone advantage in the first end. Rock, paper, scissors, or another agreed upon non-contact process can be used.
    • Players stay on the same side of the sheet. For example, if you are playing on sheet 2, always walk or position yourself in the sideline free space next to sheet 1.  (see ice surface diagram below)
    • Two small markings will be inserted four feet from each side of centre ice (roughly 69 feet from the end boards). See Distancing Illustrations below.

Non-Delivering Team: The two sweepers of the non-delivering team should be positioned on these marking while the other team is throwing. The player of the non-delivering team whose turn it is next to deliver should be positioned at hogline on the same side as the two sweepers. The Skip (or Vice-Skip) will stand on the backboards but no closer than the hack.

Delivering Team: The Skip has control of the house. The player whose turn it is to deliver is in the hack. The non-sweeping player is on the backboards. The sweeping player is at the T-Line. Once the stone has been released, the player who delivered the stone proceeds down the centre line of the ice until the halfway point to the marking or to the hog line if it is their turn next. After the stone comes to rest, the sweeper proceeds to the halfway markings. The non-sweeper travels to the halfway mark or the hog line depending on their turn to deliver or not.

    • As it is a labour-intensive activity to sanitize the scoreboard numbers after each game, we are considering other methods of keeping score (example: record on one person’s phone).
    • One sweeper only on all delivered stones. No relaying (second sweeper taking over halfway down the sheet). The person in charge of the house is not allowed to sweep under any circumstance. The skip of the non-delivering must remain in the hack area until all stones come to rest. They are not allowed to sweep the opposition stone behind the tee-line. Lessening of physical distancing restrictions would/could allow this guideline to be removed.
    • The skip or vice skip (not both) of non-delivering team must stand at the hack until the other team is finished playing and has relinquished control of the house.
    • The skip or vice skip (both teams) may not sweep any stones (both colours) set in motion by the delivering team.

Distancing Illustrations for Return to Play Guidelines

Distancing Illustration


Six Sheet Ice Surface Illustration