Monday, July 13, 2009

More from Coach Bowman

Listen to this interview with swim coach Bob Bowman, who I wrote about in my last post. Coach Bowman, among other things, is the coach of Michael Phelps.

In the interview, Bowman talks about what swimmers and their coaches should (and should not) do right before the race:

Note: There are some annoucements before the interview - but it's worth the wait.

Track and Field Videos on Flotrack

By focuses on a technical detail - the process of success - rather than on the end result, the swimmer keeps his/her attention fully in the present moment - not on the larger meaning of the event.

Bowman's message can apply beautifully to speaking:

From the Green Room: Right before you get up to speak, try not to focus on the broader significance of what you are about to do (e.g. my career depends on this, I have worked so hard to get to this moment). Instead focus on something one technical reminder. (e.g. Breathe. Keep feet planted. Smile.)


Anonymous said...

Thank you so much for bringing this terrific interview to our attention. Coach Bowman provides brilliant insight into his craft --and by extension into preparation for public speaking or any such potentially stressful endeavor. But even more than that, he demonstrates superb skill in his ability to get a message across to an audience (i.e. focusing on one major idea & seamlessly weaving in
fascinating anecdotal detail; coming across as authoritative while also injecting a note of totally genuine humility).

Sarah Gershman said...

Thank you for this perspective. I had not thought about how well he conveys his message - you are so right. The story about the two figure-skaters was a beautiful illustration of his point.

Sarah Gershman said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anonymous said...

Man that was a cool video. It is so rare to have a coach give insightful comments on the performance of his athletes and his own coaching style instead of useless bromides. very refreshing and practical. Thanks.