The First Four Minutes (50th Anniversary Edition)

The First Four Minutes (50th Anniversary Edition)

Sir Roger Bannister

Language: English

Pages: 150

ISBN: 0750935308

Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub

On 6 May 1954 Roger Bannister became the first man to run a mile in under four minutes, establishing himself as one of the most famous sportsmen in history. Bannister has written a substantial new introduction of this 50th anniversary edition of The First Four Minutes, reflecting on his experiences in 1954, his life ever since then and the evolution of mile running over the last five decades. The First Four Minutes, first published in 1955, covers not only the great race but also those preceding it (including the 1952 Helsinki Olympics) and the ones that followed, where Bannister triumphantly proved that his record time was more than just a one-off. He retired from competition in 1955 and went on to pursue a distinguished career as a neurologist. He was Chairman of the first executive Sports Council from 1971 to 1974. During his years in office the organisation developed the Sport for All programme and the first effective drugs test for anabolic steroids, a test still used...

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coaches sometimes have difficulty in applying their textbook information. There is no established technique for running. It was thousands of years from the time when cavemen attempted to draw running movements, before the cinema camera accurately analysed the relation of arms and legs in motion. But this in itself has produced no great improvement in running. The human body is centuries in advance of the physiologist, and can perform an integration of heart, lungs and muscles which is too

Mr Philip Noel-Baker himself competed in the 1,500 metres at the Olympic Games in 1912 and 1920, when he assisted in British victories. Ever since he has kept his love of athletics. Perhaps because of his own middle-distance running, he has shown special interest in my track efforts, and has always been one of my closest advisers. One of the Russians was asking for me – which seemed very strange as I had only decided to make the visit an hour or so previously. The whole evening had a

third consecutive day of trial. Eyre had been eliminated in his heat, and Nankeville in the semi-final, so I was the only representative of Great Britain left. The finalists included two Germans, Lueg and Lamers, two Americans, McMillen and Dreutzler, two Swedes, Aberg and Eriksson, Johansson of Finland, El Mabrouk of France, Boysen of Norway, MacMillan of Australia, and Barthel of Luxembourg. I hardly had the strength to warm up. As I walked out in front of those 70,000 spectators, my step had

I recover and make another attempt? After a day or two I realised that the ‘pull’ was not as serious as I feared. The muscle fibres were probably not torn, but a small blood vessel supplying them might have burst, which would have made the muscle seize up. M.M. Mays, the AAA masseur, skilfully dispersed the adhesions after I had rested the leg for five days. In eight days I was dancing, and after ten days I was running gently. In the middle of the following week, after nothing but slow running

be something wrong with a runner who could break 4 minutes 3 seconds so many times and yet not get below four minutes, even under Scandinavian conditions. He thought he might beat Landy, who was believed to have no finishing burst, by hanging on and sprinting past him in the final straight. At the time, quite humanly I think, I was a little upset at the thought that in the process Landy might break my own record. So, after having pulled me from in front at Oxford, Chris went to Finland and

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