For skill-based sports like swimming, an extended career can give an athlete the time needed to fine-tune techniques and maximize efficiently. And with plenty of airtime on TV and YouTube, along with easy access to slow-motion replays, including underwater cameras in the swimming pool, amateur athletes and coaches can now learn from the pros in ways they never could before.
This article's about how do athletes keep breaking world records, when we believed something couldn't be done before (e.g. the 4-minute mile). You can read the whole article for that, but the part I want to focus on is how easy it is now for amateur athletes to learn from the pros, mainly via technology like YouTube and slow-motion replay.
That fascinates me a lot. It's so easy to learn anything now: think about iTunes U, TED talks, a quick search on Google of "How do I….", or a visual tutorial on YouTube. Think of amateur dancers learning a whole choreography just by watching and re-watching a video. All for free.
Think of growing photographers like myself. I'm not planning to go to photo school at all (no thanks! I've already got a large loan looming over my head from college) — everything I learn now is via books, online trainings and seminars, meeting other photographers who are way ahead of me, and then just simple trial-and-error.
(my thanks to a friend — you know who you are — for sharing this article with me)