The Champions Way, a new book, captures inner workings of great sports, business champions

  • December 13, 2012

BOXBOROUGH, MA (PRWEB) -- One of the most in-depth and insightful looks into the world of the champion-level performer in sports and business, The Champion’s Way, is now available at bookstores and online booksellers nationwide — a perfect gift for the holiday season.

Authored by former U.S. Ski Team Conditioning Coach Dr. Steve Victorson of San Mateo, CA and Boxborough, MA, who coached at the 1988 Winter Olympics; and journalist/ author Robert Yehling of Carlsbad, CA, The Champion’s Way is built around 11 distinguishing characteristics of the champion, each of which comprises a chapter. Authors Victorson and Yehling use anecdotes and insights spanning 50 years of sports and business to provide descriptions of each characteristic and explicit steps everyone can incorporate into their lives.

The Champion’s Way defines a champion as someone who wins at their undertaking repeatedly, and continually adapts and adjusts to remain on top for a period of time. The athletic steppingstones that precede the champion’s level include Novice, Intermediate, Advanced and Elite. All are covered extensively in the book.

The 11 common characteristics of all great champions include: 
1.    Growing up in an environment favorable to the sport. 
2.    Commitment to the sport 
3.    Naturally competitive 
4.    Winning equals first place 
5.    Losing is a learning experience 
6.    Success equals winning 
7.    No heroes and idols 
8.    Support: friends, family, coaches, trainers, etc. 
9.    Making your own luck 
10.    Knowing self 
11.    Right equipment

For his doctoral dissertation at Boston University, Victorson interviewed 50 American and European World Cup Ski Racers including some of the greatest male and female champions in the sport’s history. Yehling, a sports journalist and author of eight books, added interviews and anecdotes with numerous top achievers in sports, music and other areas.

Ski champions interviewed for The Champion’s Way include Olympic gold medalists Pirmin Zurbriggen, Franz Klammer, Jean Claude Killy and Annemarie Moser-Proll, and top Americans Phil Mahre and Daron Rahlves. The book also features marathon legend Bill Rodgers, 14-time Olympic swimming gold medalist Michael Phelps, track great Edwin Moses, two-time World Series winner Albert Pujols, late U.S. Open golf champion Payne Stewart and 14-time Major champion Tiger Woods, five-time Wimbledon champion Serena Williams, 11-time world surfing champion Kelly Slater, skateboard icon Tony Hawk, World Cup soccer champion Mia Hamm, and two-time Olympic and 10-time X Games snowboard gold medalist Shaun White.

“There are very few true champions of sport and of business, and the reasons are clear. It is very, very hard to become the best in your sport, field or profession,” Victorson said.

Added Yehling, “In breaking down what makes these champions so dominant, since their childhoods, we found numerous steps that one can take, starting now, to become greater champions in their own lives and professions. Besides that, the book is loaded with wonderful anecdotes that appeal to the nostalgia buff and person interested in self-improvement alike.”

Victorson says that to reach the champion’s summit, any athlete must possess what he has defined as athletic maturity, in which skills and approaches to an activity are so refined and the athlete knows himself or herself so well that it comes down to one question: how focused am I to win on any given day?

“I came up with the concept of athletic maturity and coined the term about 10 years ago,” Victorson said. “Much like our own personal maturation process, there is a certain level of growth that has to be reached before you can be regularly successful. In order to win regularly, the athlete must reach athletic maturity. At this stage, all of the necessary sports related physical and technical skills have been mastered, but more importantly so have the mental skills. The athlete knows what he or she wants and needs — to win.”

Victorson holds a doctoral degree from Boston University, and is the owner of the Swymfit conditioning center outside of Boston. He also served as an exercise physiologist for the Burdenko Water and Sports Therapy Institute in Lexington, Mass. Originally from Santa Cruz, Calif., he was a collegiate water polo player at Cal State Hayward (now called Cal State East Bay in Hayward, Calif.). He continues to excel in age-group ski races.

Yehling is a three-time Boston Marathoner and successful track and cross-country coach. The author of eight books, including the 2007 Independent Publishers Award-winning Writes of Life, he is an award-winning newspaper, magazine and online journalist. He is editor of The Legacy Series, a publication focused on smart technology, new innovation and visionary leadership that releases nationwide December 10.

In addition to its bookstore availability, The Champion’s Way is available to sporting goods stores, athletic teams and departments, physical education and psychology programs at colleges and universities, and select sports competitions. The authors will be speaking on the book throughout winter and spring.

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