SwimNews: 300 Issues Young
Apr 24, 2008
Nick Thierry

This came in from a fan:

'Congratulations should never go unsaid! I understand that (this) issue of SwimNews is the 300th issue! Thirty-four years of unfaltering service and dedication and education to the swimmers, their friends and fans, and to us as coaches! And the most amazing part, as a truly independent publication, with a voice that has stood up for all the best things in the sport for 34 years. From your American fans and friends, We Are Not Worthy!!!! We Are Not Worthy!!!!'

I'm sure you are. It is gratifying to have reached 300 issues. When I started the magazine in 1974, I had only a little know-how to tell me what lay ahead. It has been an amazing journey. Read more on where it lead us all on page 20 of the latest and 300th issue of SwimNews Magazine, where Karin Helmstaedt writes on how and who contributed to our success.

Below is a taste of what you'll find when you take the plunge into our world of news, views and knowledge that can help you on your own amazing journey the sport of swimming. The contents of SwimNews Magazine can only be had by subscribing:

In this celebratory 300th issue, Cecil Colwin, a contributor to this magazine since it first appeared in 1974 under the masthead of Swim Canada, interviews Michigan Head Coach Bob Bowman, who has coached the phenomenal Michael Phelps since he was a mere minnow in Murray Stephens' North Baltimore Aquatic Club. The ensuing conversation between Colwin and Bowman provides what is possibly the most comprehensive analysis of crawl-stroke fundamentals to date. Bowman says that 'the greatest changes in Michael's freestyle and probably in all of his strokes, is that he has gone from a very much arm-dominated stroke to one that is more leg-dominated.'

Bowman also discusses Phelps' now-famous underwater dolphin push-off, which has become a race-winning feature of his technique. Another feature of 'Phelpsian technique' is the almost-uncanny way in which Michael times body rotation perfectly with the beginning of the push-back in mid-stroke. His split-second timing seems to enable tremendous muscular application and probably has much to do with the seemingly effortless way in which the young star passes the field in the closing stages of a race.

Craig Lord was at the European Championships where 6 world records (which contributed to a tally of 19 as of early April) tumbled, all of them using a new swimsuit of one kind or another, and most in one high-tech compression suit in particular. Read more on this from Adam Sioui, who remembers how the sport changed forever eight years ago, when the bodysuit made its debut.

Nikki Dryden writes on something she admires about Chinese culture: Acupuncture. We also report on the CIS Championships, where Calgary won its first men's title in a decade.

Karley Stutzel is one of the more consistent open-water swimmers and is aiming for a spot in the 10K in Beijing. Her quest is told by Jesse Jacks.

Nutritionist Joanne Malar explains all about sugar: what is good, what is bad, and how too much leads to obesity. Read labels, and her article, to be better informed.

Ironman Erik Vendt explains to Justin Finney what makes him go and then go again.

Canadian Jamie Connors talks with Jeff Grace about his philosophy on coaching Erica Morningstar.

Planning to go to an NCAA school? Read Lauren Beard's explanation of the good and the bad aspects.

Kim Vandenberg was a second in the 200 'fly at the World Championships last year. She could pull off another upset this year. Nikki Dryden spoke with her.

Alex Baumann, medley legend, is in charge of Summer Olympic Sports and the 'Own the Podium' program in Canada. Jeff Grace spoke with him about how his plans are shaping up.

Larsen Jensen, distance ace, has had some of the very best coaches help him. His story is told by Russ Ewald. Both Jensen's current coach, Dave Salo, and his former coach, Bill Rose, are concerned about Larsen's mental outlook for this Olympic year. Salo thinks it's tougher for Jensen now that he doesn't have the youthful naivety of four years ago. Rose wonders if Jensen, who at first was going to retire after college, is seeking the Olympic gold for the right reasons. Last time he had an intrinsic motive: it was in his soul. Now, he is a professional and looking to use the Olympics as a springboard for a job in business.

Craig Lord continues with his series Great Moments in Olympic History, this time with his breaststroke Olympic preview.

And I end as I began with that letter from a fan and with warm thanks to all our readers:

'Congratulations should never go unsaid! I understand that (this) issue of SwimNews is the 300th issue! Thirty-four years of unfaltering service and dedication and education to the swimmers, their friends and fans, and to us as coaches!

'And the most amazing part, as a truly independent publication, with a voice that has stood up for all the best things in the sport for 34 years. From your American fans and friends, We Are Not Worthy!!!! We Are Not Worthy!!!!

'Not only have you spoken with your own voice, but you have encouraged and given amplitude to the voice of great swimming writers and speakers like Karin Helmstaedt, Nikki Dryden, Cecil Colwin, and Craig Lord, among many others.

'We thank you so very much for the life's work that has been your great publication. Congratulations and all the best from south of your border!?

John Leonard, Executive Director


American Swimming Coaches Association.

Thank you, John. We aim never to let our guard down.

Any who wish to be well informed and help us to keep the independent voice singing can subscribe to the magazine here.