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Swimming Made Easy: The Total Immersion Way for Any Swimmer to Achieve Fluency, Ease, and Speed in Any Stroke

Swimming Made Easy: The Total Immersion Way for Any Swimmer to Achieve Fluency, Ease, and Speed in Any Stroke

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Автор: Terry Laughlin
Дата выпуска: 01.02.2001
Количество страниц: 224 стр.
Язык: английский

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Swimming Made Easy is guaranteed to help you swim better than ever in all four strokes. Refine your form and increase your pleasure with 10 lessons, illustrated with 150 surface and underwater photos. Ten chapters on self-coaching show you how to be your own best coach. A proven way to gain the knowledge to enjoy every stroke you ever take!


Countless millions around the world would love to be able to swim better -- not fast necessarily -- just efficiently and comfortably. But, for virtually all, swimming well enough to enjoy all its benefits remains an elusive goal. Too bad, because swimming can be uniquely beneficial – a non-pounding, joint-friendly fitness activity that exercises the entire body and is suitable for everyone from toddlers to seniors. Being able to swim well is a truly valuable gift – and an essential life skill.

But here's the universal Catch 22: Humans are "hard-wired" to be inefficient in the water. Everything we do instinctively tends to result in clumsy flailing and exhaustion. Swimming really well requires expert instruction; the better the instruction, the more beneficial and satisfying your swimming experience. But traditional swimming instruction is almost universally ineffective, because it focuses on "Human Swimming" technique -- arm and leg churning, which just reinforces our inbred inefficiencies. As a result, "average" swimmers can only watch "good" swimmers with envy, assuming it takes "talent" -- or endless training -- to swim that well.

The message of Terry Laughlin's groundbreaking new book, Swimming Made Easy, is that swimming well is not a gift reserved for a talented few, but something attainable by everyone. As U.S. Masters Coach of the Year Emmett Hines wrote: "Laughlin makes the effortless grace of elite swimmers accessible to 'average' swimmers with simple, logical, proven steps that make fluid, powerful swimming a HABIT rather than a chance encounter."

This is the most hopeful message that lap, fitness or competitive swimmers or triathletes have ever heard. Until Laughlin's first book, Total Immersion: The Revolutionary Way to Swim Better, Faster and Easier (1996), all previous books on swimming mainly recycled the same set of misleading and mistaken "rules" about what matters in swimming. They made the improvement process intimidating and confusing, and ultimately resulted in little progress. Laughlin's first book was an instant hit with readers because, as they reported, "It makes sense," and "This really works; I can feel a difference from the first lap."

Where previous books had mainly prescribed laps and more laps or presented swimming technique as something akin to rocket science, Laughlin advised human swimmers to think and swim more like fish. Fishlike Swimming, as he dubbed his method, focuses on avoiding struggle and turbulence by learning to be balanced and "slippery" and learning to swim fluently before trying to swim far or fast.

Since publication of the previous Total Immersion book, Laughlin and his associates have taught TI techniques to swimmers of all ages and abilities, from 4 years to 80-plus, from non-swimmers to Olympians and everyone in between. At every level the response has been enthusiastic. As JoAnn Della Torre, a swim instructor in Naperville, IL, said, "You can always spot a TI swimmer by his or her grace and flow." The new book, Swimming Made Easy, details the insights and lessons from thousands of teaching and learning experiences and breaks new ground in making the swimming-improvement process even simpler and more direct. It also provides foolproof steps and learning sequences for learning to be Fishlike in any stroke.

Here's a sampling of some of the paradigm-smashing information in SME:

  • WHAT'S HOLDING YOU BACK? IT'S THE WATER, NOT YOUR FITNESS LEVEL. Lap-based approaches to swimming improvement are doomed to fail because, unless you're efficient to start with, more laps simply make your "struggling skills" more durable. If you can walk, run, or cycle a mile or more, you're fit enough to swim a similar distance. A lack of "swimming fitness" isn’t why you run out of gas. It’s the way your body interacts with water. Chapter 1 outlines five simple skills guaranteed to help you work with, not against, the water.
  • HOW YOU CAN SWIM LIKE AN OLYMPIAN. Your instincts tell you to swim faster by churning your arms faster, but the world’s best swimmers are faster because they travel MUCH farther with every stroke than you do, not because they move their arms faster. Chapter 2 explains why Stroke Length is so advantageous and exactly what you can do to get it.
  • NO MORE SINKING FEELING. Survival instincts make us want to stay on top of the water: As a result virtually every swimmer spends most of their energy trying not to sink. They think they’re pulling and kicking to move forward, but, in reality, their arms and legs are mainly occupied with fighting "that sinking feeling." But, the fact is, our bodies are supposed to sink.. Good balance and body position is the art of sinking in a horizontal position. Chapter 3 tells you how.
  • SWIM "TALLER," SWIM EASIER. Most swimmers believe that "stroke technique" means "how you push water back with your hands." Want to swim better? Tweak your armstroke. Want to swim faster? Put more muscle into it. But, hydro-dynamically, the most important thing you can do with your hands is use them to lengthen your bodyline. A longer bodyline reduces drag. Chapter 4 explains how to swim "taller."
  • DON'T FIGHT THE WATER, SLIP THROUGH IT. The gospel according to coaches says: "Swimming is hard." The price of speed is "more" and "harder." The gospel is wrong: The one non-negotiable, unavoidable, unyielding limiter of speed is resistance, not your capacity for work. No workout, wet or dry, can overcome the drag created when you try to bully your way through the water. But smart, strategic choices you make in how to "pierce" the water as you swim can reduce drag dramatically. Chapter 5 tells you exactly how to become more "slippery" and Chapters 7 and 8 explain how to generate effortless propulsion.
  • A STRONG KICK IS ESSENTIAL. Swimming instructors always start by having you kick and kick and kick some more. No wonder everyone thinks a powerful kick is the key to swimming well -- and then spends countless hours on kickboards vainly pursuing it. In fact, kickboard training does nothing for your swimming, and the best kick is the one requiring the least effort. Chapter 8 explains how to integrate an effortless kick seamlessly with fluent body motion.

These examples are drawn from just the first half the book. The second half offers a detailed plan, with progressive and sequential how-to steps, that will allow any individual to become their "own best swimming coach."

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