Curling Luxembourg has published its "back to play" COVID-19 guidelines ahead of the new season, commencing in September 2020.
Alex Benoy, President of the Union Luxembourgeoise de Curling (Luxembourg curling union), recalled that curling is a non-contact team sport. Luxembourg facilities at the Kockelscheuer ice rink have two sheets (playing fields) which will accommodate four teams, thus a maximum of sixteen individuals.
The Luxembourg union has taken the World Curling Federation's suggestions into consideration, with regard to possible amendments to ensure that players can maintain social distancing and still enjoy the sport. Many of the guidelines relate to sweeping since this is where players would generally come into close contact. Prescribed positions are also introduced to avoid players congregating on the ice during play.
The Luxembourg curling union will thus adopt the following measures with the start of the new season in September:
- Ice preparation
The ice technicians at Kockelescheuer will be responsible for the ice preparation and should be the only individuals handling this equipment (i.e. Ice King and pebbling can). A disinfection schedule of equipment will be determined in collaboration with the ice facility management.
All individuals participating in curling will be required to register via Doodle or a sign-up sheet at the ice arena. All players will acknowledge their responsibility via a Declaration of Compliance which should state that the individual pledges that they have not been exposed to COVID-19 in the past fourteen days and they are taking reasonable steps to avoid being exposed. The union will also follow any guidelines suggested by Luxembourg's sports authorities.
- Pre-game preparation
Measures put in place by the Kockelscheuer ice facility should be respected in addition to the following:
- Players should familiarise themselves with the new ice markings and the player positions and player flow during the game. There are two new small markings two metres on either side of centre ice (approx. 21 metres from the end boards) to mark non delivering team positions;
- Club equipment should be disinfected before and after each use;
- Stones should be sanitised at the start of each game. Players should use a broom to clean the running edge of the stone;
- Players select their two stones. No interchanging of stones during a game;
- Players should not touch any stones other than their own. Let the player delivering the next stone retrieve their own stone;
- Stones should be lined up in single file in the corners after each end;
- Determine what method will be used for keeping score (eg record on one person’s phone). The scoreboard and numbers should not be used since it is difficult to ensure proper disinfection.
- Playing the game
- Instead of a handshake, give a friendly wave or tap brooms;
- Sliders and brooms (if not personal) must be disinfected before each use;
- Stone must be sanitised before each game;
- Players should not touch any stones other than their own;
- Stones should be lined up in single file at the beginning of each end;
- Players all have fixed positions on the same side of the ice: non delivering team - next player to deliver stands at the hog line and the other players stand mid-way down the sheet on the same side; delivering team – non sweeper at the backboards and sweeper at the tee-line;
- Only one person in the house. Opposition skip (not together with vice skip) should stand behind the hack until the delivering team has completed play. Only the delivery team skip or vice skip should be in the house – not both together;
- One sweeper at a time. No relay.The person in charge of the house may not sweep;
- No sweeping of an opposition stone behind the tee-line and no sweeping of any stone (of any colour) that has been put in motion by the delivered stone.
- Follow local regulations with respect to the wearing of face masks.
The purpose of these guidelines is to ensure safe social distancing.