A Classic Game - Skipping Rocks      


Home l Arts & Crafts l Games l Gifts l General l Just Kids l Grandparents l Suzy's Blog l Entertainment l Store l Registration l Site Map



You'll need water - a lake, pond, river or stream will do. You'll also need rocks. Lightweight flat rocks are best but often one must make do with whatever is available at the water's edge. An underhand pitching motion works for me - you may find a different motion works for you. Keep in mind that best results are achieved by throwing as close to level with the water's surface as possible. If you're competing, the winner is the one who gets the most "skips".

Jerdone Coleman-McGhee, holder of the Guinness World Record for stone skipping (38 skips) talks about skipping stones. Courtesy of AARP Magazine.

Skipping a stone across a clear morning lake allows you to defy gravity, and just how cool is that? Your plan:

First you have to become a rock expert. "To get a good skip, you need the right stone," says Coleman-McGhee. These are smooth and uniformly thick or thin. Contrary to popular belief, they are not necessarily round. One of the best shapes is triangular ("like the Stealth Bomber," he says). The triangle shape provides stability. The stone should be about as big as your palm.

Hold the stone gently between your thumb and middle finger, with your index finger curled around the edge. A common mistake is to also curl the thumb around the edge. No. Rest the thumb on top.

Prepare to throw by cocking your wrist way back and aiming the stone so that it will contact the water with a nearly parallel trajectory.

Snap your wrist so the stone leaves your hand with maximum spin. You don't need a lot of force, but spin speed is key. "Throw quicker, not harder," he says.

Click to return to Games.