Remember that close game you lost when your skipper’s last rock grabbed a piece of stray gripper rubber and took a hard left, stopping just past the hogline? And remember how you went to the changing room, took off your shoes, and left them in your locker to just put them on next week without ever taking a look to see if maybe it was your gripper shedding material?
I’m guilty of this as often as the next curler. But next time you are about to put your shoes away, take a good look at them. Check the INSIDE of your slip on gripper. Look at all that crud! It’s everywhere! Take a peek now under your hinged slider. Just flex the toe forward. Gross! And you just pull off your gripper and start sliding down the sheet, dragging all that crud with you?!
Clean your grippers regularly. A quick soapy bath will do. If they’re too far gone, replace them. Craig’s Curling Shoes grippers are Velcro attached for easy replacement when needed. Clean your slider and under the hinged area as well. Just wipe it clean with a damp cloth.
Also, take a look at your toe coat. If you opted for a color other than black, you’ll likely see how dirty the ice can get by how dirty your toe coat is. Especially considering the limited time it is in contact with the ice. Again, just wipe it down with a damp cloth occasionally to keep your toe looking sharp!