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6 Reviews
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars a breakthrough book, 1 July 2007
By 
back to basics (Glasgow - Scotland) - See all my reviews
This review is from: The Art of Swimming: In a New Direction with the Alexander Technique (Paperback)
Since this appeared, there've been thoughtful and very worthwhile swimming books from Ian Cross, and from Terry Laughlin, but this was the first, and it's one I go back to. Quite simply, it reorientates your thoughts about what you're doing with yourself in the pool, and about how you can be in the water. Unlike Steven Shaw's more recent "Mastering the Art of Swimming", which is highly detailed, and chock-full of step-by-step drills, this book sets the mood for thinking how you can enjoy the benefits of Alexander Technique as you start to swim, or return to swimming. It's highly enabling, it has you believing you can do it, happily, and that's a great start. "Mastering the Art" is great too, but it's at times scary in the sheer amount of fine detail with which it analyses aspects of each stroke. This book gets you back to moving, as does Ian Cross, with core priorities in place, and not too much worry over wanting to be exactly right. Maybe it's simply the tone - whatever - it changed radically how I think about being in the water, and (I believe) for the better. The dvds (sold separately) are a great back-up, and also well worth acquiring. For me, Terry Laughlin's Total Immersion books proved very compatible with this approach, and an inspirational way to move forwards.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Of benefit to the experienced swimmer, 7 Nov 2007
By 
Benjamin (UK) - See all my reviews
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: The Art of Swimming: In a New Direction with the Alexander Technique (Paperback)
Whether you swim for exercise, relaxation or pleasure, this book is sure to help. While a good proportion of the text is devoted to explaining and justifying the principles behind the ideas it promotes (and I did tend to skip much of that, although I am sure it is interesting in itself), it does contain some really good advice.

I swim for an hour or more on an almost daily basis. Being a swimmer who at one time swam competitively I was finding it hard to do anything other than swim all out in the pool, but the suggestions here really helped me gain a new perspective, and derive much greater pleasure from my swimming.

Some sections are devoted to specific advice on individual strokes, highlighting both good and bad practices. Interestingly many of the suggestions contained in the book do not contradict typically taught methods, but rather they compliment or enhance them. However it does also warm against some practices which it considers physically harmful, especially some practices adopted by competitive swimmers. Overall its message is to encourage swimming techniques that are both relaxing and that make swimming a pleasure.

I found this a most useful book, every bit as beneficial for the experienced swimmer as much as the novice.
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19 of 22 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A new path to swimming for both the aquaphobe and swimmer, 23 July 2001
By A Customer
This review is from: The Art of Swimming: In a New Direction with the Alexander Technique (Paperback)
This book has helped me discover the physical and psychological reasons for my long standing fear of swimming. It clearly sets out step by step the technique that Steven Shaw has developed using the Alexander Technique to overcome the reflex actions that create the panic and rigidity which inhibit freedom of movement in water. It is also very informative for those who are not terrified of water, but who have problems which they seek to overcome. Beautifully illustrated and full of sound advice.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Regular swimmer, 11 Mar 2010
By 
Mr. G. Watts (Abertridwr, Caerphilly, South Wales) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: The Art of Swimming: In a New Direction with the Alexander Technique (Paperback)
The book describes itself as something you will dip into, thats exactly as I found it, sound advice, well explained, handy for any swimmer looking to improve their swimming.
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13 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars excellent reading, 24 May 2002
By A Customer
This review is from: The Art of Swimming: In a New Direction with the Alexander Technique (Paperback)
This book has helped me in overcoming my fear of water which was due to an incident that happened to me in my teens.I have wanted to swim for many years and now with the help of this book I am gradually getting there.
It covers aspects that are not covered by everyday swimming instruction. Very informative and practical a book that you will read more than once and refer to in the future.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Excellent pause for thought about swimming, 18 Dec 2012
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This review is from: The Art of Swimming: In a New Direction with the Alexander Technique (Paperback)
Bought this as I am not a strong swimmer even though I know the mechanics and wanted to improve. This has really helped me to enjoy the water and I can now even attempt front crawl and still be able to breathe. The book doesn't teach much in the way of instructions but helps to build up confidence to ignore things previously taught which aren't helpful. I began to lose a bit of interest towards the end of the book but will certainly keep it for regular reference
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The Art of Swimming: In a New Direction with the Alexander Technique
The Art of Swimming: In a New Direction with the Alexander Technique by Armand J. D'Angour (Paperback - 31 Mar 2001)
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