Curling is a sport in which players slide stones on a sheet of ice toward a target area which is segmented into four concentric circles. Two teams, each with four players, take turns sliding heavy, polished granite rocks, also called "stones", across the "ice curling sheet" toward the "house", a circular target marked on the ice. Each team has eight stones, with each player throwing two. The purpose is to accumulate the highest score for a "game"; points are scored for the stones resting closest to the centre of the house at the conclusion of each "end", which is completed when both teams have thrown all of their stones. A game usually consists of eight or ten ends.

The "skip" is the captain of a team. The skip determines strategy, and holds the broom in the "house" (target area) to indicate where a teammate at the other end of the curling "sheet" (playing area) should aim the stone. The skip usually throws the last two stones in the fourth position, but may play in any other position.

The skip must also observe the opposition's gameplay and pinpoint their strengths and weakness to shape the team's strategy to put the opposition at the least advantage.

Sometimes "skipper" is used; it can also be abbreviated as "S". It's also used as a verb ("skips", "skipped", "skipping").

It is conventional to identify a team by the name of the skip.

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