To recognize International Literacy Day on September 8th, we have created a list of our favorite books relevant to rowing. Many of them are oldies, but definitely goodies.
EngineRm Recommended Reading List
Several members have suggested an EngineRm reading co-op so members can share their books. We have copies of most of a few of these books kicking around the club and we will set up a book shelf. If you pick up any of the books below, thanks in advance for passing them a long when you are finished.
1) Boys in the Boat by Daniel James Brown
New York Times Best Seller that kept the rowing world abuzz for several years. A historical account of the University of Washington's 1936 crew that captured the hearts of the American sporting world and took on Hitler's German sports machine. This is a well-written book, rich in historical details, and builds beautifully to its climactic end.
2) Assault on Lake Casitas by Brad Alan Lewis
This is a must-read for all rowers. Written in diary format, this is gripping, highly entertaining account of the author's quest to make the 1984 Olympic Team and race on what is basically his hometown course.
3) Gates of Fire by Steven Pressfield
An Epic Novel of the Battle of Thermopylae that is sure to inspire commitment to your teammates and goals. Our Naval Academy rowing friends tipped us off on this book, as it is required reading for cadets.
4) Flow in Sports by Susan Jackson and Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi
This is one of the great sports psychology books of all time. It explains that feeling and moment we've all had when everything is going right and you feel like you can do no wrong. Reading this book will help you stay relaxed and perform at maximum efficiency in all aspects of your life.
5) Running Within by Jerry Lynch and Warren Scott
Another must read sports psychology book for all athletes who push the envelope. Reading this book will help you keep the faith in those stressful moments when self-doubt abounds.
6) Essential Sculling by Daniel J. Boyer
This book gives a good overview of what it takes to become a good rower. Well organized and written, this book is essential reading for all aspiring rowers.
7) Seabiscuit by Laura Hildebrand
Hands down, one of the most inspirational books you will ever read. This is an amazing account of underdogs beating the odds in one of the most incredible sports stories in history.
8) The Sculler at Ease by Frank Cunningham and Leslie Strom
Frank Cunningham was classic, life-long coach in the Seattle area, who knew many of the Boys in the Boat rowers and had a hand in coaching some of the greatest success stories in rowing, including Brad Lewis and Paul Enquist in 1984. This covers all the basics in learning to row and mastering the sport on the highest level.
9) Once a Runner by John L. Park
This is a novel based on the author's experience as a competitive collegiate runner. It captures the mindset of any competitive endurance athlete.