‘My Mum got my Dad involved in the sport when they first met and I joined in when I was old enough. There aren’t any age groups so I’ve played in competitions with adults all my life’
Curling, a seemingly understated sport, is not very common in Australia. It involves teams of four attempting to slide rocks or stones from one end of the ice rink to the other, where they should land as close to the target as possible. The sliding process is ably assisted by the sweepers, who use brooms to help guide the stones into place.
‘We only get to train once a week on the ice which is difficult for a national team. Considering we are playing against teams that train on the ice more than once a day. The rest of the time we train in the gym or practice our sweeping technique.’
Both of Dean’s parents played for Australia and Dean has followed in their footsteps. He has competed at the 2014 Pacific-Asia Men’s Curling Championships and 2014 Pacific-Asia Junior Curling Championships where he played against countries like China, Japan and New Zealand.
Dean has won two gold medals at national championships; Men’s Nationals in 2014 and U21 Nationals in 2011. He also competes in the Mixed Doubles where he took home the Bronze at the 2013/2014 Nationals. He was recently recognised by DUSA in 2014 and received a Full Blue elite athlete award.
‘The sport doesn’t receive much funding so we have to support ourselves. It becomes a rather expensive sport to play when you add up the cost to hire the rink and all the equipment.’
Dean is currently studying a Bachelor of Exercise Sport Science at Deakin University. He is heading into his 3rd and final year, and has managed to get himself a pretty impressive placement at Geelong Football Club.
‘I will be analysing their GPS data, heart rate data and performing in-depth video analysis.’
Next year Dean aims to finish in the top 2 at the Pacific-Asia Curing Championships to progress to the World Championships. After finishing his degree, Dean hopes to complete his masters in exercise physiology.
Curling is a unique sport that only the truly committed are able to compete at a high level. Dean, with the support of his parents, is only just begging to tap into the international world of curling. Considering Dean is very young in the curling world, to have achieved what he has so far is nothing short of amazing. Dean has many opportunities ahead of him to show the world what he can do and we look forward to following his progress.