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Total Immersion: The Revolutionary Way To Swim Better, Faster, and Easier Paperback – May 18, 2004
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Masters swimmer and acclaimed coach Terry Laughlin has taught thousands to swim more efficiently in the workshops he has given across the United States. In his book Laughlin details simple, step-by-step drills emphasizing the importance of technique and an innovative workout regimen. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
Eddie Reese 1992, 1996, 2000, and 2004 United States Olympic Coach and Head Coach, University of Texas (six-time NCAA champions) The most valuable service a good coach provides is to sharpen your technique, not make you work harder. Terry Laughlin has done an outstanding job of simplifying that complex job, providing practical tools that will work for any coach or teacher.
David Marsh 1996, 2000, and 2004 United States Olympic Coach and Head Coach, Auburn University (2003 NCAA Men's and Women's champions) Total Immersion can help anyone learn to be a better swimmer, regardless of ability. Terry Laughlin makes an improved stroke simple for the novice, yet I've seen his methods work for elite swimmers, too.
Top customer reviews
I first heard of TI swimming from an Australisn woman in a hostel in British Columbia. She took 20 minutes to describe it to me, and it improved my swimming efficiency immensely the same day. Then I bought the Kindle edition of the TI instruction book, and my progress stalled immediately. Words, words, words! Notwithstanding what other reviewers have said, the book is hortatory to excess in wanting to convert those already converted, it lacks photographs, drawings and other illustrations to "show" you visually what's going on. It relies on the minutiae of "coach talk" (although professing to do the opposite!) for every description, and speaks excessively of "training" and "drills," which may appeal to a certain class of competitive athlete interested in winning races, but leaves me dead on arrival.
Without illustrations, the book is sheer drudgery to read. I return to it now and again as ritual penance for perceived wrongdoing, and each time I return to it, I find myself bored to death and wanting to review it on Amazon to warn others like me that the method is good, but the writing of the book is just plain bad. A competitive swimmer or triathlete would understandably disagree because coaching, training, drills and dedication may be music to his ears. I've had the book a year now, and haven't been able to finish it. I watched every TI video on YouTube and even bought one of the TI videos on "breathing" (worthless, same criticism as of the book) and just by watching the YouTube videos, I've been able to master some of the techniques. I like the method; it's good, but I understand it simply as good naval architecture designed to increase hull speed. It works. It's graceful and quiet. But TI needs to hire a professional technical writer to rewrite a version with illustrations for the common man who isn't a competitive swimmer or triathlete, and who isn't interested in personal bests or races, a version for somebody who just wants to learn from good pictures and illustrations with well-designed, descriptive captions, and wants to swim effortlessly and gracefully in a noncompetitive world of his own.
-the book concentrates on swimming technique, correct position, and how you're suppose to feel in the water
-the book gives you drills to reinforce the most efficient way to swim
-the book is very scientific and the info is based on hydrodynamics
The book covers a lot of ground, but the authors writing style makes is go by quickly (at least it did for me). The pictures were good and I thought the explanations of the techniques and the "why" behind them was very understandable. Not sure about the rotator cuff routine in Chapter 16 though- it's kinda long and I'm not sure if some of the exercises like the reverse biceps curl is really necessary (rec. Bulletproof Your Shoulder for swimmers who have shoulder issues).
In conclusion, I found the book very enlightening and recommend it to anyone (young OR old) who wants to learn how to swim more efficiently by learning the correct swimming techniques. The author obviously loves swimming and has brought all his years of experience and research into one handy resource.
After a recent knee injury put a temporary halt to my running, I decided to turn to swimming to try to stay fit. My problem was I hadn't swum in so many years I was concerned about my technique.
I looked to Google and YouTube for inspiration which led me to Total Immersion videos and Tim Ferris' blog. Both convinced me to give TI swimming a try and I'm glad I did. I've found a swimming technique that I feel has helped me swim more efficiently.
I like that the book spells out the principles of efficient swimming. The drills do a good job of building fundamentals. I have patiently followed the techniques and have seen improvement. I no longer splash recklessly during my laps trying not to drown, but glide farther and faster. I look forward to my swims.
The only drawback of the book are the number of diagrams which help you visualize the drills. There are too few of them. On one hand, that's fine. I decided to get the DVD to see how they are done. Unfortunately, the DVD I bought doesn't replicate these drills exactly. I may be doing something incorrect with my technique and wouldn't know.