BLOG | Füssen camps and courses

It's that time of year when the World Curling Federation (WCF) runs its summer camps and courses programme and aspiring ice-techs, umpires, coaches and young curlers travel to Füssen, in south Germany, to take part.

During the fortnight we'll hear from the course leaders on why they are running this programme and how successful it has been in 2016.

The Füssen programme is lead by the WCF Competitions and Development Team and runs as follows:

  • Ice-Technician Course - 25-29 June 2016
  • Introduction to Instruction - 30 June-1 July 2016
  • Umpire Basic Course - 1-2 July 2016
  • Junior Camp - 3-9 July 2016

    The 18th WCF / DCV Hummelt Junior Curling Camp

    Scott Arnold, one of the WCF's Competitions and Development Officers, tells us about everything that goes into running a junior camp.

    One hundred and eighteen junior athletes from nineteen countries slotted into six groups. Six instructors and twelve assistants from eight Member Associations. Three ice technicians and two administrative staff. Nine sheets of curling ice. That is what it took to run the 18th WCF / DCV Hummelt Junior Curling Camp in Füssen, Germany, last week.

    The junior curlers were out the door of their hostel and on the road to the arena every morning by 09:00. They don’t get back until 21:30. In those twelve plus hours, they are taught theory in the classrooms and technical skills on-ice. There are fitness activities including a spin class and circuit training. But don’t get me wrong, it isn’t all work and no play. They go mini-golfing, participate in evening games off-ice, play puck curling (a form of bocce on ice) and compete against each other playing the traditional game.

    An added twist this year was a logo competition. The Füssen Junior Curling Camp turns 20 in a couple of years and we were looking to the athletes to help in the celebration by designing a logo for the camp. The entries were all fantastic and we will be incorporating elements of two of the submissions into a new logo to debut in the near future.

    The camp begins with anxious teenagers meeting their “teammates” and ends with new friendships and memories to last a lifetime. The 18th WCF / DCV Hummelt Junior Curling Camp was a huge success and from all those that participated, a huge thanks to CDO Eeva Röthlisberger and Liz Munro for all of the work that went on behind the scenes.

    For all the photos from the camp visit our photo album on Facebook at

    A diverse group takes part in the Introduction to Instruction course

    Scott Arnold, one of the WCF's Competitions and Development Officers, gives us an insight into the diversity of people taking part in the 2-day "Introduction to Instruction" course.

    You won’t find a more idyllic location to teach the science of curling instruction than the Bavarian town of Füssen, Germany. Lakes and rivers highlight the landscape of the valley and you are surrounded by mountains still showing some snow on their peaks. It is no wonder we had a wait list for our Introduction to Instruction Course this year.

    Twenty-two participants from twelve Member Associations took part in the course taught by myself, Shari Leibbrandt from the Netherlands, and assisted by Sina Frey from Germany. The two-day course taught the participants how to teach the basic curling delivery, a safe method of sweeping, and basic strategy.

    The mix of people taking the course was most interesting for me. There were national team athletes, young adults just leaving the ranks of junior curling inspired to give back to the sport, couples who had recently found the sport while watching the Olympics and now wishing to develop it for the first time in their home country, and teachers (not curlers themselves), hoping to teach it to the students at their school. Both classroom, on-ice and peer teaching sessions were enjoyed by all.

    The diversity of experience and range of nationalities meant nothing to this enthusiastic group. They embraced a common goal and will head back home with the knowledge to teach others the basics of the sport and the spirit of the game that has been passed down from generations of curlers around the world.

    Success for new and improved Ice-Tech Course

    Mark Callan, one of the world's leading ice-technicians starts us off with the first entry after the newly extended five-day Ice-Technician Course.

    Course leaders Mark Callan (SCO) and Stefan Roethlisberger (SUI) have vast experience teaching the Ice Technician Course and making ice at European, World and Olympic level events...

    25 June to 29 June 2016 were the dates of this year’s World Curling Federation Ice Technician Course in Füssen Germany.

    The course this year differed from previous years, in that it had been extensively modified and upgraded to five full days to include a new section on the maintenance and preparation of curling ice. The new section gives a particular focus to pebbling, scraping and clipping.

    The course covers all aspects of ice installation and maintenance and gives the participants a chance to work in “hands on” and classroom environments.

    Myself and Stefan Roethlisberger were delighted to welcome 20 ice technicians - the first to receive the new course content - from USA, Scotland, Italy, Estonia, Poland, Germany, Switzerland, Russia, Hong Kong, Belarus, Poland and Slovakia.

    After assembling in this beautiful Bavarian town, the participants worked to install the ice in the arena, which will subsequently be used for the courses and Junior camp that commence today and run for the next week.

    All the participants worked hard and took a great deal away from this course, and I am sure in the coming season they will find plenty of opportunities to use what they have learned. I wish them all the very best and well done for what they have achieved.

    The course has in the past and will be in the future the stepping stone for those hoping to become more competent curling ice technicians, and who possibly want to go onto install ice at international events.

    I would like to thank my colleagues for their comments about the course.

    Stefan Roethlisberger said: “the new format worked well and that I am very impressed by the calibre and knowledge possessed by those attending the course.”

    This were echoed by the World Curling Federation’s Director of Competitions and Development, Keith Wendorf, who said: “I am very impressed with the new course and the format. It all worked exceptionally well.”