Breakthrough Swimming

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Human Kinetics, 2002 - Sports & Recreation - 247 pages

Never before has one book taken such a comprehensive look at the evolution, science, and coaching application of competitive swimming. In Breakthrough Swimming, legendary swimming coach and researcher Cecil Colwin provides a rich perspective on the development of the sport and explains major advances in stroke mechanics, training methods, and racing techniques.

Accompanied by richly detailed illustrations, this engaging text is one of the most insightful written works on the sport. It makes clear sense out of the scientific principles and puts into context the historical changes in the sport. Not only will you gain a greater understanding of competitive swimming through its origins and evolution, but you'll also gain these valuable skills:

- Improve your stroke technique, starts, and turns.
- Improve your feel of the water by learning to anticipate and effectively manipulate the reacting flow of the water.
- Understand the hydrodynamics of swimming and learn how water reacts to the forces you apply with each swimming stroke.
- Improve your conditioning and develop a better training program by understanding the principles of training.
- Learn how to design different types of workouts to produce specific physiological effects.
- Learn how to plan a seasonal program and how to relate your training to the pace of the race you intend to swim.

The book includes a chapter contributed by Dr. David Pyne, sport physiologist to the 2000 Australian Olympic swimming team. Pyne covers the physiology of modern swimming training and the preparation of swimming teams for top-flight international competition.

Breakthrough Swimming covers every aspect of competitive swimming from its spawning ground in early 19th-century England to the present day, including the profound changes that occurred in the last decade of the 20th century. The book also explains the societal changes of recent years, such as the advent of professional swimming and the specter of performance-enhancing drugs.

Combining history with the latest innovations, Breakthrough Swimming is the definitive work on the past, present, and future of competitive swimming.


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History of the Swimming Stroke
Breakthroughs in Stroke Techniques
Strokes Statrts and Turns
Movement Through Water
Understanding Hydrodynamics
Propulsive Mechanisms of Speed Swimming
Coaching the Feel of the Water
Advances in Training
Development of a Training Program
Past Present and Future of the Sport
Evolution of Competitive Swimming
Doping Testing and Modern Efforts to Gain an Edge
Looking Back Looking Ahead
A 400 Bibliography of the Historical Development of the Swimming Strokes

Progression of Training Methods
Principles of IVIodern Training
Physiological Research and Applications
About the Author

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About the author (2002)

Cecil M. Colwin, who passed away in summer 2012, is a legend among swimming coaches. He had a distinguished international coaching career in which he developed Olympic medalists, world-record holders, and national champions. Colwin is also acknowledged as one of the swimming world's most influential coach educators and historians. His indelible mark on the sport spans from pioneering swim training in South Africa to coaching Canadian national and international competitors.

A former national technical director of Canadian swimming, Colwin was instrumental in researching, designing, and implementing Canadian Swimming's National Plan for the 1976 Montreal Olympic Games as well as the Canadian National Apprenticeship Program for training coaches in all sports. He also designed and conducted coaching certification courses for Level III coaches in the United States and Australia. In 1985 and 1986, he received the American Swimming Coaches Association's (ASCA) certificate of excellence for outstanding coaching achievement in the United States. In 1993 he was inducted into the International Swimming Hall of Fame.

Colwin authored hundreds of articles, papers, and books on competitive swimming, and served as a consultant to administrators, coaches, and swimmers worldwide. He was a regular contributor to several swimming magazines, including Swimnews, Swimming World, Swimming Technique, and The American Swimmer. Known as one of the swimming world's most inspirational lecturers, he addressed the World Swimming Coaches' Conference on several occasions and gave hundreds of lectures and clinic presentations worldwide. Colwin was the founder of Cecil Colwin's International Swim Camps, a leading stroke clinic and training experience for swimmers and coaches from many countries.

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