I was recently contacted by Stephen Orr, developer of the newest curling application for the iPad called Curl Coach.
Stephen is a long-time software developer and as well as curling for approximately 12 years he is also a trained competitive curling coach.
Stephen has very kindly offered you, the readers of my blog, the chance to win a copy of this brand new app (worth $39.99) but first, here’s what Curl Coach can do:
The most recent entry into the world of charting apps for iOS, Curl Coach stands out from other charting apps by focusing on providing tools to coaches that help them to coach their teams, rather than simply delivering a bewildering array of shot-making statistics.
Curl Coach takes a novel approach to charting. Every shot starts with a broom position and the movement of the stones, and then adds the shot type, difficulty, turn and score. This enables Curl Coach to provide a fully animated replay of every shot in every game. The Strategy Book features the same animated playback, enabling the ability to take actual in-game situations, copy them to the strategy book, and add all the ‘what-if’ scenarios that you desire.
Entering all of the stones may seem like a big chore, but with a little practice it becomes very quick and natural. Curl Coach automates a number of areas of charting to make things as easy as possible, including determining the shot type and turn based on the motion of the stones, and setting the shot difficulty based on the type. If the shot is scored as a miss, Curl Coach automatically asks you to chart the miss reason (or reasons). If you do get behind in your charting, Curl Coach provides an easy way to catch up by just placing stones.
A true curling application requires stats, and stats is an area where Curl Coach over delivers. There are three main reports: the Player report summarises an individual’s career, the Team report summarises the performance of a team, and the Competition report provides analysis of all the games from a competition. In each of these reports, Curl Coach provides a number of standard sections and many optional sections. As a coach, you can customise which sections are included to suit your needs.
Curl Coach includes the capability to use the charting data to help plan and run practices. Select from more than 30 built-in curling drills, or create and share your own. During the practice, Curl Coach enables you to record the score achieved in each drill, and take notes for the team and individual players. With practices, Curl Coach provides functionality not found in any other curling app.
That’s only the beginning of what Curl Coach has to offer. If you are working with a competitive curling team, you should take a closer look at Curl Coach.
Here’s a list of notable coaches who are using Curl Coach today:
Bill Tschirhart – Canadian National Senior Coach
Al Moore – National Trainer, Swiss Curling
Daniel Rafael – Head Coach, Czech National Team
Shari Leibbrandt – National Junior Coach
Brett Kury – Coach for team Kelley Law
Murray Etherington – Head Coach, Brock University Curling
Byron Scott – Head Coach, Men’s Curling, University of Guelph
Allen Coliban – Romanian Curling Federation
Find out more at www.curlcoach.com
Stephen was good enough to provide me with a copy to have a play around with and I have to say I was very impressed.
As an RCCC Assistant Coach I am always keen to see what is new in the field of coaching or developing our sport – Curl Coach would appear to be a fantastic resource.
While it is perhaps more detailed than the average Sunday morning volunteer would need I have no doubt that for coaches and performance personnel at the elite level it is a great tool to have.
I found the layout to be clear, simple and relatively intuitive with handy tips to help you along the way when first experimenting with the app’s capabilities – the quick start feature is useful in this regard.
The built-in stopwatch with a logging facility was a nice touch as was the user guide which is embedded within the app itself.
It is the complete package with every possible detail a coach could require but I believe it would take patience and practice to enter all the relevant information and to get the most out of the app.
If you are willing to stick at it, however, I think you will have a very powerful and useful weapon in your coaching armoury.
So, fancy getting your hands on a copy?
Before I tell you how to enter and to avoid any disappointment, Curl Coach will only run on an iPad 2 or later or an iPad Mini running iOS 6 or later – the next version will require iOS7.
All you have to do to enter is send a message to the blog email address, firstname.lastname@example.org, with the subject ‘I Want An App!’
This competition is open to anyone and you have until 23:59 UK time on Thursday 13 February 2014 to get your entry in.
One lucky winner will receive a download code to obtain a copy of Curl Coach and they will be notified shortly after the end of the competition.
Images are © Stephen Orr