What was it like at the world’s highest bonspiel? Find out in this episode all about curling in India with PN Raju. First, we talk about how he discovered curling and started playing in Oakland, Calif. Then, he tells us about the history of the Curling Federation of India, their recent national championships held in the Himalayas and how soon you’ll see India at World Curling events.
Category Archives: Curling Around the World
Gery Hermans from Belgian Curling returns to the podcast to discuss the world senior curling championship. Jonathan and Gery review the 2022 world senior curling championship and the Gery replays two interviews he completed at the event. The first is with Canadian Team Coach Bill Tschirhart. Bill is also the host of the podcast “A Pane in the Glass”.
Then Gery introduces his second guest Lorne de Pape of New Zealand curling. Lorne discusses what curling is like in New Zealand, and his experience qualifying the Kiwis for the 2006 Winter Olympics.
Finally Gery and JOnathan discuss the comradery at the world senior championships and upcoming events at Gery’s home rink in Zemst, Belgium.
Sweden captured four curling medals during the Olympics and Paralympics in 2022, including gold for Niklas Edin. But did this unparalleled success lead to more curlers in the country? We talk to development officer Sara Carlsson to find out all about curling in Sweden: from how their high performance program is set up to the changes they’ve made to recruit new curlers. Sweden has had plenty of wins on the ice. However, we found the most interesting part of the conversation to be the wins they’ve had off the ice and how they’re addressing issues that are common around the world. These include initiatives that they have developed with Dr. Richard Norman and Dr. Heather Mair with a focus on diversity, equity and inclusion.
Like the United States, interest in curling soars in Japan during the Olympics. This interest has reached even greater levels following Japan’s bronze medal performance at the 2018 games. Naoki Iwanaga, a former competitive curler from Japan now living in the US, joins us to talk all things Japanese curling. We discuss the differences in curling culture between Japan and the US. Then, we learn about the growth of the sport in Japan and the need for a dedicated curling facility in Tokyo. He also introduces us to the concept of “沼” (meaning pond or swamp) and how it relates to the increased attention on curling during Team Fujisawa’s games.
Everyone’s Olympic curling dream has to start somewhere. For Laventer Oguta and Haggai Odhiambo Ogak, that dream starts New Jersey. These two members of the Kenya Curling Federation recently got their first experience on curling ice at Plainfield Curling Club with hopes that they will soon represent their nation in World Curling Federation events. They join us, along with Dean Roth from Plainfield Curling Club, to talk about how they were introduced to curling, how their initial training is going and what the future holds for curling in Kenya.
Slovenia is a country that has everything, but doesn’t have a lot of anything. So says Štefan Sever, who joined us from quarantine at the World Junior B Curling Championships to tell us all about curling in his country. And while Slovenia doesn’t have a lot of curlers, 150 total according to Štefan, it does have both lively recreational and national tournaments. Listen to our conversation with Štefan to find out about his team’s experience at the canceled World Junior B tournament, some of the unique curling set-ups they have in Slovenia and what they need to grow the sport there.
There is a thriving community of Brazilian curlers playing in leagues in the Vancouver area. First and foremost, these curlers enjoy the sport and the camaraderie it provides. And curlers from these leagues have represented Brazil internationally. But now, with the opening of a dedicated curling and ice facility in São Paulo, Brazilian curling has an opportunity to grow both at home and abroad. Ísis Oliveira of the Brazilian Curling Club tells us how the club in Vancouver was formed, how it’s grown and what the future of curling in Brazil holds now that the sport has its own facility there.
You may not be familiar with Belgium’s international curling representatives. And that’s perfectly fine. What you need to be aware of is curling is growing in Belgium thanks to a focus on making it a fun, social experience. We talked with Gery Hermans of Curling Club Zemst about the growth of the sport in Belgium. He also tells us about the obstacles they overcame to fund and build their facility. It may be a while before you see Belgian curlers on any podiums. However, you won’t regret putting Belgium on you bonspiel calendar.
Australia has a vibrant curling community despite several road blocks. There are no dedicated curling facilities and very few ice rinks. It’s a large country whose population centers are spread out. So how is Australia growing the sport and making the semifinals at the World Mixed Doubles Curling Championships? We spoke to native Australian and federation secretary Lyn Gill to find out. We start with curling news from Canada, Nigeria and Scotland and get into our interview with Lyn at 12:20.