The Maturing Of Bob Bowman, A Mentor ‘Mellowed, Softer’ But ‘Smarter’ For It

Bob Bowman's Golden Rules were forged in the water but transcend swimming and sport - this is a book for all seasons - main image by Patrick B. Kraemer

Golden Rules review, part 3: “Have I gone soft? Maybe a little,” says Bob Bowman, before making the point that he’s “gotten smarter”. As Allison Schmitt outs it a decade into working with the coach and mentor: “He’s not as loud as he was, and because of that I think he’s better. He’s mellowed, but in a good way.”

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Bowman’s method just didn’t suit Agnel: (excuse the french)

clive rushton

“But is it useful to have them all in one place in digestible form written in the perspective of a coach with Michael Phelps on his score? Yes, is what I say.”



The only thing that I am certain about this book is that Bob Bowman made huge mistake contracting Charles Butler ( children fiction), but not Craig Lord for this job. I won’t be surprised if presentation of this book is more colorful and more thoughtful than book itself.
The very look of this ‘Ten Commendments’ not swimming book (as Craig put it), with Phelps’ name practically being made the part of the title suggests me not to rush with my $30 and wait for critics and readers reviews to see if it gets at least 3.5 of 5 stars.
I found these three articles an interesting reading, but not always got convinced with Bowman’s observations and generalisations. He constructed in his mind some system that helps him navigate in outside world, but this wisdom is not necessarily suitable to other people.


Well I guess I should be flattered for being quoted verbatim ??

Craig Lord

Quite so, Therealuigi. The assessment of what constitutes success in coaching is complex and multi-layered. My father has 3 Olympic medals and over 10 Olympic swimmers on his career record but the gold in his work in his passion in the pool and beyond it was to be found well down the mountain side beneath those Olympic heights, in the lives he enriched. That’s the case for many (the vast majority of) coaches, Bowman, Olympic heights drawing the supertroupers, included as far as I can tell and know (there will always be swimmers for whom one model/approach or another is not ideal, of course … but fine guidance is certainly heavy in the mix in the book I reviewed)


It did not escape me, though, that I was quoted for juxtaposition against how the book should be truly read πŸ˜€

But I guess that’s what I deserve for having passed judgment without reading first (although I insist that I was talking about the general feeling from the review, not the book).

Again, I’ll read it and, if it’s of any interest to anyone, I’ll honestly write what I think about it. I am also eagerly waiting for Anthony Ervin’s autobiography to hit the shelf, that promises to be an interesting reading too.

Craig Lord

Yes, Therealuigi – Mr Ervin’s book will be really interesting, I would imagine; and not how it should be read but might be read and how I read it… and yes, you did deserve it πŸ™‚

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