New Zealand is one of the few places on earth that still actively plays the traditional outdoor "crampit" variety of curling, and still has regular inter-club competitions. The outdoor game played here differs little from the game that the curlers right played in 1885!
Instead of the smooth sliding delivery that is a trademark of the Olympic version of the game, the delivery in crampit curling is from a standing position. The player stands on a metal platform, called a crampit, instead of sliding from a hack. The player places one foot back, one foot forward, rests the non-delivery hand on the front knee for balance, and throws the rock in a pendulum motion, like a bowling delivery. The photos and video below demonstrate the crampit delivery style.
The other feature of traditional crampit curling that surprises most people is the length of games. 21 ends are played, as opposed to the 10 in international and Olympic play.
If you think that this would result in 6 hour games, consider the playing surface - frozen outdoor ponds. Irregular and soft ice surfaces mean that 24 second draw shots are almost unknown - heavy weight shots are the norm. A 21 end game can be played in 3 hours or less!
Crampit curling is a rich and vibrant reminder of curling's great old traditions - traditions that are still active here in New Zealand. The NZ Curling Association is dedicated to ensuring these traditions continue to thrive here. The NZCA's mission statement:
It is the mission of the NZCA to improve and grow the ‘Olympic’ game of curling in New Zealand in both participation and international performance, while cherishing, preserving, and developing the uniquely Kiwi character of the outdoor, ‘crampit’ game.