I am not a skydiver. In fact my thoughts of ever being one have not lasted more
than 20 or 30 seconds> But, having read ABOVE ALL ELSE, I can say you don't
have to have an ounce of skydiving experience to benefit from reading this.
If you've ever had fears or doubts about scary or things that seem unobtainable, this
book can help you understand what and why you have these, and how to push
through them. The best part is how terrific you'll feel if you can get up the courage to do so.
It's fast paced, easy to read, with lots of thought provoking ideas of how to be
successful with only a little bit of chutzpah.
I just wanted to drop you a quick email to let you know I have just finished your book. I got it for Christmas and apart from looking at the pictures and quickly skimming through it I have not really had time to sit down and read it.
All I have got to say is WOW its amazing. I read the entire book cover to cover and couldn't put it down, JUST BLEW ME AWAY! I have been telling everyone in the last 24 hours. to get it and ordered the wife to read it when I get back from my training course. I knew a little bit about your life and what you had done but to read the fully story from the start to present day just blew me away.
The way Dan approaches life and especially about getting back in the air after the plane crash and everything he had to overcome.
Dan BC is one of the most genuine people you will ever meet and can inspire by just talking to you. His book not only tells you how he achieved his goals no matter what was in his way but it also lets you know how to do exactly what he did no matter what your chosen field.
Above all else is a truly inspiring book that will have you on the edge of your seat and smiling at the same time. The story of Dan's life will have an effect on everyone that reads this book. It is written by a true legend and I am honoured to be able to call him a friend.
Captivating! From the moment I opened the book I was hooked! Dan has brought to life all the amazing qualities of one mans successful journey through life and his determination to never never give up! You will be inspired by this story to look for the positive in all areas of your life no matter what your circumstances. This is not just for skydivers so don't be fooled by the cover! This is a book that applies to everyone so don't miss out on a great story and a great motivational book on a better way to live you life to the fullest ! You will not be disappointed by this book!!
Above All Else has already helped me turn one of my lifelong dreams into a real goal and put in the work it will take to achieve it - this is a book for anyone looking for the inspiration to reach their dreams and beyond!!
I had the pleasure of getting coaching from Dan when I was only 19, just over 10 years ago. It's obvious within minutes of meeting him how much he has to offer as a mentor, teacher and coach. Most of us learn from our own journeys but very few of us are able to articulate our experiences in such a thoughtful way and turn the lessons we have learned into such a dynamic toolkit for others to adapt and use in their own lives.
In the fist half of the book, Dan treats viewers to a front row seat at the moments in his life that offered him the greatest opportunities for personal growth and learning. His openness, sense of humor and bravery in the face of greater tragedy than most people can imagine make his story a true page turner...and if that's all there was, it would be an inspiring and interesting read for all audiences.
But that's not all...Dan not only tells a beautiful story, he provides a unique and effective framework for how to think about achievement. Though other books address the same topic, none feel as genuine or grounded in true life experience. If you are a person living in the shadow of things you want to do, but you don't know how to prioritize, where to start or what to do - READ THIS BOOK. I always said I would run a marathon someday...After reading Dan's book, I turned someday into April 16, 2012. His advice helped prepare me for the obstacles I would face and continues to inspire me, even on the toughest days.
I'll be thinking of Dan when I cross the finish line, and I will always be grateful that he took the time to write this book.
A LIFE CHANGING BOOK
I wish I had the chance to have read Dan Brodsky-Chenfeld's book earlier in my life. I found it so inspirational, and so full of practical hints to actually being able to achieve my goals or make my dreams come true (I mean real hints, not only the "Believe it hard and it will happen" stuff, you know) that I often think that my life would have turned slightly different than it did.
But you know what? It's never too late! And I look forward to what's coming up next, because I feel ready now, I know what to do if ever I want my life to be as exceptional as his, if I am ready to commit myself enough to choose happiness and success ..."above all else."
Just one last thing though... Sure, it's a story about skydiving, but you don't need to be a surgeon to enjoy medical TV shows, do you? So even if you've never jumped out of an airplane, you will learn a lot, and certainly love reading Dan BC's book.
– Celine Pelletier
I loved this book! I have bought three more copies to give to friends. I was drawn into the book reading late into the night after a work day and school night, which says something in my schedule. I do not come across many biographies which are real page turners. This one was. I often read books telling people how to do things to improve their lives. Here we have someone who lived it then provides the insights learned by doing. You see what it looks like to follow your dream and sometimes the experience is the only reward, but if you love it the reward is worth it.
The book is well written combining the will, inspirations and sequence of events which led to this life well lived. The photos inserted in the center of the book were well chosen to illustrate the story and the personal spirit of the people involved.
I highly recommend this book to anyone with a dream.
"Above All Else" is actually 2 separate, but complimentary books in one:
Part I: Above All Else
Part I of Above All Else is a very exciting & real book. Once you get into it you realize it's not just a fairytale story written by an author trying to sell books by showing you that he knows all the right things to do. Dan describes the difficult decisions he made about what was important to him and what he was willing to sacrifice to become a world-class skydiver. He also describes what was important to him that he was not willing to sacrifice. He describes how the decisions of the people around him, including his family & friends, also affected his path because of what kind of people they were, what was important to them and how decisions they made about their lives affected his life. He writes honestly about his failures, his successes and his misfortunes.
Everybody talks about and is encouraged to follow their dreams but when it comes right down to it how many of us have the focus and are willing to make the real sacrifices (comfortable home, career, nice car, toys) to realize them? How many of us make the step from generalizing about dreams to taking the specific steps to make them come true? How many of us get sidetracked from our dreams by distractions in our lives? How many of us can bounce back from tragedy and get back on track to living our dreams? How many of us have family that will support us on a risky path to fulfilling our dreams?
The great thing about this book is that by telling us how he was able to realize his dreams we are provided with a framework for realizing our own dreams. It shows us that finding the path to our dreams is very possible without sacrificing our values if we make the right choices. It may not be a straight path and there are no guarantees you'll get to the end of it, but you'll be headed in the right direction and ultimately you'll find yourself as a better person in a better place. This is an inspiring, often funny story that every young and young-spirited person will enjoy and will benefit from reading.
Part II: Playing to Win
As if the inspirational Part I wasn't enough, Part II is a 90-page wholly unique and self-contained instructional manual for competitors. In it, Dan gives competitors (a term he doesn't limit to sports competitors) the philosophy and instructional framework for competing against themselves and others to achieve peak performance. He describes the benefits of visualization, the path up the performance curve, and how to repeatedly improve your performance by making your best your average.
This is a book all competitors should read if they want every advantage in their quest to be best.
– Delta II "Delta II" (Colorado Springs, CO United States)
Confidence in your own abilities
Confidence that you know what you are doing
Confidence that you are MASTERING it
This could describe a closing of a major business deal, just passed an exam, you just won your race or you just made a solo skydive!
Ever had this feeling?
Fantasize - Dream - Goal
There are countless books in the genre "selling yourself" - "how to become a winner" and so on. But there is ONE book which is different.
It is a story about a man who easily could have given up numerous times. But the true passion and determination to do what he considered the right thing pushed him on and on.
The book reads like a thriller/drama, a "can't stop reading now..." type of book. It throws you straight into a terrible airplane crash and just builds from there. A miraculous survival, a difficult recovery, a spiritual perspective, and it is supplying you with ideas for your own life from page 1. (make sure to have a notebook available)
Dan Brodsky-Chenfield is a so down to earth person, and when you meet him you feel that he actually cares, it is easy to consider him a friend.
His book Above All Else is a must for anyone who is trying to achieve a goal in life. From extreme performance in business or sports, it is all up to you to decide!
Fantasize about what you really would like to do
Dream about it!
Set a goal, make a plan, and make it happen!
Step 1: Read Above All Else!
– IDAR KVAM
This book is for anyone who has ever wanted to achieve a goal, but doubted themselves and/or lacked the motivation to take the first step or stick with their plan. This is a two part book: the first part is Dan`s inspirational story about deciding to obtain a goal, sacrificing everything to get it, only to suffer great tragedy and loss so close to achieving it, then overcoming this tragedy to finally reach his goal. The second part details simple techniques that anyone can apply to any situation in order to achieve their goal. Dan Brodsky-Chenfeld lives every day like a gift. Despite his many achievements and accolades, he is the most down-to-earth, humble person you could ever meet. He truly practices what he preaches, and uses the methods and ideas he has shared in his book to continue to achieve amazing accomplishments. The goal of his book is to share his ideas so he can help others to be successful in whatever their goals may be.
For starters, I felt this book is inspirational, motivational, & spiritual. It is written well in that Mr. Brodsky-Chenfeld gets your attention right away in the beginning by discussing a very interesting scene from his accident and then proceeds to discuss his life. The book keeps your attention throughout as it describes Mr. Brodsky-Chenfeld's extreme ups and extreme downs as he battles his way back to being a champion. It's amazing what Mr. Brodsky-Chenfeld went through not just for his career but survival. Great read and very motivational.
– RICHARD BRADACH
This is a remarkable book from beginning to end. It's an inside look into the extraordinary spirit of one man and the challenges he faced and overcame. It's also a deeply personal and moving adventure story. And it's about a real man, not a mythical figure, but an average man of vision and courage who had the audacity to dream big and refused to quit in spite of what the world was offering in the way of adversity. As I was reading it I could feel his pain and courage and I could also feel mine. More than anything else, this book is a reminder to me that anything is within my reach if I have the vision, passion, and strength to persevere. Thank you Dan.
– DR. JOHN DeROSALIA
Before I begin to review this book, I'd like to start by saying that you DO NOT have to be a skydiver to
relish in this story. Nope, you don't even have to know what a parachute looks like, let alone have the
first concept of what 'competive formation skydiving' is. You will love this book however, if you enjoy
reading a 'come back' tale that looks as if it's leapt from the pages of a Hollywood film script -except
that this story is 100% true.
The book is divided into two sections. The first reads likes a novel – it is the story of Dan Brodsky-
Chenfeld, a now multiple World Champion Skydiver, whose 10 year quest for World Domination in
4-way formation came to a dramatic halt when the plane his team were in, crashed. 16 of the 22
passengers on board were killed (including one of Dan's team mates) and Dan woke up from a 6 week
coma with a broken skull and neck. This incredible story teaches you the power of refusing to give up
on your dreams, and that with huge reserves of humility, self reflection and pure hard work, anything is
The second section "Playing to Win" is a motivational read that lays out very methodic key points and
proven techniques that a team can use to help them reach their full potential. This includes sections
titled 'pushing your best' and 'don't fear losing' to name a few. What is impressive is how Dan relates
every aspect of this section to everyday life - whether you are an individual with a specific work or life
goal in mind, or any type of sports team at any level, I dare you to read this section of the book and not
come away with an energized feeling of 'I can do anything I put my mind to'.
For me, one of the biggest things I took away from this book is 'to not wait' when you have a goal in
mind. The timing, moment or logistics will never be perfect to set out on your journey. Your team mates
or colleagues may not be the picture perfect people you had in mind to achieve your goal with (I was
shocked to read that Dan had a real personality clash with one of his teammates, but they both dug
deeper to become better team mates and made it happen regardless). To quote Dan "You are striving
to achieve an ambitious goal. It is only ambitious because there are so many obstacles. Obstacles are
what create the challenge, and the challenge is what makes it worthwhile. Pursuing an ambitious goal is
nothing but obstacles."
All in all, if you read this book, you'll become a better flyer in the sky, and more importantly, will
unquestionably become a better teammate and person when your feet are firmly on the ground.
– Hannah Betts, member of Bodyflight Storm, 2008 Women's World Skydiving Champions of 4-Way FS
Self-Help Packaged in an Amazing Skydiving Story
As a writer with 30 books in print, I am jealous: I do not think I could ever write a book as wonderful as this.
Of course, no one else could write it, as it is primarily an autobiography of one of the most extraordinary men I have had the honor to know in my life. But I also do not possess the skill to so artfully tell a story, that were it not true would be unbelievable, and tell it with elegance, beauty, poise, and clarity. Dan Brodsky Chenfeld tells his story with the smoothness and flow of a mountain stream.
No one alive could read this book and come to the finish as the same person. It is a book about determination, courage, and intensity that all will appreciate and benefit from. Part Two is a brief, well-thought-out self-help book that can apply to any profession, though this book is about skydiving. But you could ignore self-help if you wish and just read this amazing story.
For reasons Dan explains he was captivated by flight since childhood, but when he first jumped from a plane with a parachute at the age of 18 he had found a life's work and challenge to become the best competitive skydiver in the world. It is a hobby and profession that pays no tangible benefits other than being the best in the world at a sport few mortals ever experience.
Self-interest alert: I am a skydiver and met Dan soon after his first jump. I watched his riveting determination to be the best develop over the years; he moved to California, where he felt his chances to improve were greater.
I followed his career for years as he climbed the ladder of excellence until it all ended, I thought, in a plane crash that killed 17 of 22 skydivers aboard, including one of his and my best friends, the amazing James Layne. Dan, body broken, was in a coma for six weeks and in hospitals for many months more. No one but Dan ever considered that he may one day jump again.
Dan opens his story with a dream sequence before he even knew he was in a coma, then goes back in time to his childhood and youth - day by day, month by month , year by year - which led to his hospital room.
I judge many a book by how I would have edited it, nearly always cutting away pages of extraneous descriptions and unnecessary accounts. I found no single sentence to delete in this story as it flows form Dan's voice to his pen.
The book is written chronologically in very brief chapters, simple nuggets easy to read and retain. The profiles of the many people who influenced his life are vivid, and the constant love of all of his close-knit family never played second fiddle to his dreams. His girlfriend and then wife, Kristi, willing to live in a trailer in the desert while he chased his dreams, played an unusual role of tough love as he crossed over from total dependence to partial independence as he began to heal after the accident. Eventually even his nine-month-old daughter Chloe Layne made an impact on the eve of his ultimate achievement. These folks are pictured poetically in a colorful section where you can meet them all.
I can treat you to a synopsis of the book simply by listing some of its 40 initial chapters: Waking Up, Following Your Dreams, Growing Up, Defining Spirituality, The College Years, Going into Business, Wanting to Be the Best, Finding Work, Discovering Arizona, California Dreaming, Skydiving Plane Crashes in Perris, Losing my Halo, Moving On, Till Death Do Us Part, The Ultimate Power of the Human Spirit.
In the final 90 pages of this 326-page book Dan packages the lessons learned in his life into ideas and rules that can work for anyone who cares to go beyond mediocrity in life or in business or profession. The world is full of self-help folks whose achievements do not warrant their license to give advice. Few on this planet have earned the right to do so as Dan Brodsky Chenfeld has.
- Dr. Jay Lehr
Skydiving lessons apply to many sports and vocations
I enjoyed this book very much. At one level- it's an incredible story of a skydiver overcoming all odds to be the best in the world. This alone would be worth the purchase price. At a second level- the practical lessons and learnings from Dan B-C's personal story have applicability to many aspects of maximum personal and team-based achievement. These lessons are highly valuable for anyone to fulfill sports, business or personal dreams. The discussions about team dynamics is particularly valuable to those who work in team environments.
- Dr. Seth Cohen
An extraordinary life!
A thoroughly inspiring read! Dan Brodsky-Chenfeld shares the remarkable the story of his life pursuing one of the most universal of dreams, that of human flight. He actualized the reality of that dream through the sport of skydiving and developed a passion for the sport that led him to become one of the greatest skydiving champions in history. Along the way, he overcame obstacles that would have seemed insurmountable to most, including the extremes of human tragedies, and while doing so, developed a process for setting and achieving goals and for maximizing human performance potential. Above All Else reveals this process to its readers through two means: the first part of the book tells the inspiring and entertaining life-story of Brodsky-Chenfeld's life, including his early boyhood dreams of flying, his youthful search for his life's purpose and passion, and the moment he found it with his first skydive which set off a subsequent whirlwind journey through the next twenty years that included stunning achievements and heart-breaking tragedies on the road to winning multiple World Championships in skydiving. In the second part of the book Brodsky-Chenfeld expounds on the details of the team-building and performance maximizing process that he has developed and refined throughout the years. While Brodsky-Chenfeld's method is clearly related to high-speed performance athletic activities, he notes that the process is no different for virtually any other field, and as an intensive care physician, I can attest to this truth. I have applied the methods he describes in one manner or another throughout my medical career, but I have never encountered such a precise summary of the direct means to taking a dream and turning it into a goal and then a reality, and for maximizing human performance under pressure. I saw a direct relation of his description of the moment prior to exiting the aircraft in a World Meet competition skydive and my work in the resuscitation of critically-ill patients in the hospital, when a team must rely on the training they have and work together "against the clock." This book will inspire anyone to follow their dreams and become a champion in their own chosen arena. I am recommending it to all of my friends and colleagues as a must-read story of human triumph and tragedy and what it really means to be a champion in life.
- Dr. Bill Binder
An inspiring lesson of life
When I started reading this book, I just couldnt stop. This is the extraordinary and fascinating story of a person who was faithful to his dream, through good and bad times. No doubt Dans is a living proof of the fact that if you go to work to make reality your dreams, and you stick to them no matter what, many times they will come true and the results might even be bigger than your dreams. That is so true that even when challenged with one major life changing event, the author kept faithful to his dream. Its an amazing true story from an great man. This life story is so great and remarkable, it highlights so much the power of the human spirit, that it deserves to be taken to a movie, so the masses will get to know it and hopefully be inspired by it.
In the meantime, I really wish this book will be in the hands of many many people, because in it theres a little bit for everyone.
- Justo Ibarra Royg, Attorney
Adventure and insight from a life in freefall
This book is a great read. Brodsky-Chenfield writes about his life competing to win the world skydiving championship. Along the way he gets fleeced by his first business partner, almost flunks out of college as a theater major, nearly dies in a skydiving plane crash that kills his "little brother", and then not only recovers but goes on to achieve his ultimate goal. Brodsky-Chenfield writes with great humor and insight which provides emotional impact to what are already dramatic events. Competitive skydiving is an arcane endeavor that has not previously been explored in an autobiography. The closest predecessor is "Jumping Fire" by Murry A. Taylor who describes his career as a fire fighter in remote forests accessible only by parachute. Both Brodsky-Chenfield and Taylor explore the difficulty of building and sustaining relationships with women while pursuing a career that demands nearly all their time and emotion. "Above All Else" goes beyond most adventure books that describe a thrilling and dangerous career by including life lessons that are learned by Brodsky-Chenfield in the most painful ways. The author's self-deprecating humor keeps the book fun without confusing the message. "Above All Else" is an outstanding addition to this genre. It reminded me of the introspective, "On the Ridge Between Life and Death", by David Roberts, the extreme climber and mountaineer. He too lost friends while engaged in an addictive but dangerous sport. Roberts explores his motivations for risking life and limb purely for fun. Brodsky-Chenfield never questions his motives; it's a given that jumping out of airplanes is the coolest thing in the world! Instead of asking why, Brodsky-Chenfield asks how. His book is the answer to that question. In fact, the book is comprised of two parts. The first is autobiographical while the second is instructive. This book is about making choices and performing well. The two parts work together to illustrate and explain these two actions. The performance that the author uses for illustration is skydiving but he makes it clear that the same lessons hold for all high-speed, precision sports such as downhill skiing or auto racing. But what about the accountant who works alone in a room, communicating only through documents? Performance may be less important in this circumstance but making choices is critical for everyone. Without being pedantic, Brodsky-Chenfield distills his practical approach to moving through the decision-making process. He presents fear as the primary obstacle to commitment and spends considerable effort explaining how to overcome or even utilize fear. So, you get a self-help book in addition to an adventure story! I have to warn you: reading this book may cause you to start exercising or setting goals for yourself. It really is an inspiring read and I hope to see another book by this promising author. For full disclosure, I have known Brodsky-Chenfield for several years. We skydive together from time to time but I don't owe him any favors. This review is my sincere opinion of a great book.
- Professor Steve Briggs
A Great Pursuit
This is a great read on many levels. For the experienced skydiver it is a history of the sport in the US for the last 20 years, especially 4 way competition skydiving. For the nonjumper it comes as close as I have seen in describing what free fall skydiving is all about. It is a page turner describing a world class athlete's relentless assault on a dream to become the best in the world. It is also a touching love story between Dan and his wife Kristi and between Dan and his best friend James. And it is an inspirational how to book on facing life's challenges and coming out a winner. Surprise, when all is done it's not the prize itself but the perfect pursuit of that prize that is the take home lesson here.
- Dr. Fess Edwards
Weather was terrible last week, we didn't jump (fly in my case) and it made me feel bad not having fun with you guys at the csr. Looking forward for the 253!
Anyway, the real reason I am writing this e-mail is to thank you for taking the time and making the effort to write your book. I just finished it and I wanted to let you know it is, by far, the most inspiring story\book I have ever read. Many times I had heard your name, knowing you were the muscle guy, ex airspeed member, experienced 4-way coach and all... Also I have had different discussions about the accidents with Mario Lakatos from the Skyhawks...
But now reading this book and learning about your whole story was simply a life experience! You know all these books are sold saying it will 'change your life', well yours was that strong to me. I will make sure that people I care about, friends and people I know get to read it.
Very nicely written and friendly to read, I raise my hat big time
See you soon Dan!
- Vincent Lemay, member of Evolution, Canadian National Champion 4-Way Team
An Authoritative History of Modern Skydiving and an Inspiration for All
I bought this book because I'm an amateur skydiver and because Dan has a reputation as a world-class skydiving champion and coach. I expected an exciting story about skydiving and competing, and maybe some nuts and bolts advice on 4-way skydiving competition. Dan's book has all that and much more that I didn't expect. Dan's near death experience with his friend James Layne is gripping. I cannot stop thinking about it. His philosophy on competing, his spiritual approach to being the best that a person can possibly be at whatever a person chooses to do, and his real life experiences confronting fear and overcoming incredible obstacles, whether in acting or in skydiving or in anything else, are inspiring reading for anyone. As Dan says in his book: "The real meat of what it takes to win the world skydiving championships is the same as excelling in any other activity or endeavor."
On top of all that, this book is an authoritative history of modern skydiving told by someone who was not just a first-hand witness to it, but was - and remains - one of the makers of that history.
- Frank Battaile, Attorney
Inspring and powerful
Dan Brodsky-Chenfeld's book is strong and powerful. To say he inspires is an understatement. I was spellbound from his tales of growing up with "super mom" to his heart wrenching story of a near career ending plane crash. Go Dan Go.
amazing man, amazing story.
- Kate Cooper, Multiple Skydiving World Record Organizer
The Story of a Champion
I had never read a book from cover to cover in just one day. Dans book was the first. I couldn't put it down. I've known Dan for a few years through skydiving but other than the World Champion team - AirSpeed, I knew very little about his past. It was an inspiring and humbling read, an insight into a true champion. For me personally, the book arrived at a very important time being in the middle of a very demanding and challenging military course. My determination and desire to complete the course were wavering and the book led me to ask questions of myself that are posed by Dan when deciding whether to pursue very challenging goals. The Military has its own formula for leadership but when it comes to achieving very demanding goals in themselves, determination and desire is generally left up to the individual. I found myself using some of the Techniques discussed in the book on course; visualising and the 4 Cs - Calm, Communicate, Control and Confidence. The techniques helped tremendously and also helped me to better analyse the cause of mistakes when the team made them.
My thanks to Dan BC for taking the time and effort to put his thoughts and past experiences on paper.
- Barry Calver, Australian Military
An amazing story and inspiring read
Wow! What a roller coaster ride! I was literally wiping away tears while reading the first few pages of this book, and then I was laughing out loud as Dan recalls his early skydiving days and then I was sitting on the edge of my seat as he recalls his fight to become world champion, overcoming seemingly unsurmountable odds along the way. Dan is a great story teller and his story is an amazing one to tell! In part two of his book Dan shares his tried and tested methods to be A Winner; How to pursue and achieve your dreams, whatever they may be, regardless of your walk in life. I am now choosing to apply these methods to pursuing my own dreams and I encourage others to do the same.
His book is a thrilling, gripping and inspiring read from beginning to end and I could not put it down. I would highly reccommend this book to both skydivers and non-skydivers alike, to all those who enjoy a riveting read, as well to those who are looking for a little motivation in life.
- Shazza Kindsvater, Manager Perris Skydiving School
An inspiring read
An inspiring story about Dan's journey from a novice skydiver to a multiple world championship winner in spite of the tremendous setbacks and losses he suffered. It is a compelling read with a narration that flows smoothly and I often found myself turning pages with anticipation. One is easily touched and motivated by Dan's passion, commitment and courage to pursue his dreams. I also enjoyed reading about the places and people who have shaped the world of competition skydiving and how Dan was in the middle of it all.
Dan shares the insights he has developed over the last few decades in building, leading and coaching world class teams and the processes, attitudes and tools that create success. These techniques can be used by everyone in their daily lives to perform at their best. There are sections in the book (e.g. Visualization, Peak Performance) that I have already gone back to a few times and I pick up something new every time.
I feel there is something for everyone in this book. Highly recommended.
- Amit Ranjan Dubey
Great story, great life, great time with this book
English is not my native language and it's very far from that. I expected that reading this book will take me at least few weeks more because my language limitations. I was wrong. It involved me on page 1 and was keeping till rear cover and just a few dozen hours book was done with huge part of fun and satisfaction!
Imagine a crazy man who sold everything including his soul to go follow his dreams and have stayed with it for whole his life. Reading this book you will be taken to the world of skydiving so different than normal life style and unknown for most people, but for sure is worth to get to know. This book contains action, knowledge, love story, spirituality and passion and everything there is true. You will be involved, you will be laughing, you will be touched. Many of us will find part of his hidden dreams inside. Must for everyone who has just a little of 'Peter Pan' somewhere inside.
Is this book perfect? No, it isn't. There are a few minor cohesion issues and some black holes in the story, but most of these issues are more about writing too less than too much so it was keeping me hungry and I wanted more. Maybe it can be elaborated on in next editions? Who knows...
To sum up, I believe it's great book for everybody and great idea for a gift especially for people who can't find their way in life.
Awe inspiring journal...
A must reading for everyone...This is certainly one of the most inspiring pursuits of a dream that came to fruition in a most difficult of circumstances.His life was almost lost,but he persevered through tremendous adversity to become the World Champion that he is today.
Book of the year!
"It's been said that the true worth of our pursuit of victory is defined by the obstacles we must overcome to achieve it"
The story of Dan Brodsky-Chenfeld can be described as amazing, motivational and inspirational. He overcame the challenges of a life changing, life threatening plane crash to fulfill his dream of becoming a world champion skydiver (one of the best skydivers in the world, in my opinion). His story will motivate anyone who is facing hard time, physically or mentally to pick up, dust off and do whatever it takes to achieve their goals and dreams.
As someone who overcame a pretty serious injury early on in my skydiving career, Dan BC (as he is known on the dropzone) has inspired and motivated me to continue in ways I never thought possible. After finishing the book, I now believe in myself more than ever and realize that if I really want something, I can have it, I just have to be willing to work hard enough and dedicate enough of myself to get it.
As an avid reader of 50+ books a year, I have to put "Above All Else" at the top of my all time favorite reads. I didn't want to put it down but I didn't want to finish it either. It is covered in post it notes to mark the quotes that I will memorize and utilize in the pursuit of my goals and dreams. It is a book I will read and re-read for years to come.
Read your book while visiting Fritz last weekend. Amazing, awesome and soooooooooooooooo inspiring. Thanks for sharing with the world to read. Nothing is impossible . . . all is possible.
- Claudette Desjardins
Hoping you can still make it to our book club. Cannot wait to talk about your book. I cried, laughed and related in many ways. I am bringing the book to my Principal today to read. She is trying to team build her staff and I find many of your strategies applicable to helping her be more successful. Last year she brought our middle school up 50 points to take us out of program improvement.
- Robin Balch
Dan Brodsky-Chenfeld is an awesome coach, a renowned athlete and a great friend. What I learned from Dan not only took me and my team to the very top of our sport, it has also been life-changing. I regularly find myself in business or challenging personal situations with Dan BC's words ringing in my ears. Whatever path Dan followed I have no doubt he would have been an incredible teacher; he knows how to show others to unlock some sort of magic within, and to learn how to identify and replicate true personal best. Simply put, Dan BC is a master at teaching mastery, and I don't think there is anyone, regardless of background, who does not have something to learn from him.
- EMMA BEYER, MEMBER OF "UK AIRKIX", WOMEN'S WORLD CHAMPION 4-WAY SKYDIVING TEAM 2006
Dan's had a facinating life and his experiences have given him a unique ability to ensure he gets the best out of individuals and teams. He ensured that we did not allow other peoples expectations to put limits on our potential and never to allow fears to hinder our performance. These lessons took us to the gold medal that we dreamed of, but more importantly are things I carry with me every day in life, particularly in business and my personal relationships.
- KATE STEPHENS, MEMBER OF UK "BODYFLIGHT STORM", WOMEN'S WORLD CHAMPION 4-WAY SKYDIVING TEAM 2008, SENIOR MARKET MANAGER AT SMITH & NEPHEW
Dan taught us to be champions before we even arrived at the World Championships. The mental strength and attitude we learnt to have as a team won us the gold medal. It made us stronger and able to handle the challenges thrown at us during the competition, and training. We knew the other top teams were as good as we were but it was about being able to perform when it counted. Dan made us believe we could do this, and we did! Dan is an amazing competitor and awesome coach.
- AMANDA KEMP, MEMBER OF "UK AIRKIX", WOMEN'S WORLD CHAMPION 4-WAY SKYDIVING TEAM 2006
Dan's plan is so effective and so simple to follow it works for people at all levels aiming to get the most from their training. Our team achieved so much in such a short space of time, Dan's plan not only got us to the Podium, and us achieving our dream goal, but also kept everything fun, challenging and exciting.
- JULIA FOXWELL, MEMBER OF "UK AIRKIX", WOMEN'S WORLD CHAMPION 4-WAY SKYDIVING TEAM 2006
Dan is the most inspirational coach I've ever worked with. Not only did he share his technical expertise, but he also prepared us mentally, giving us the edge over our competition. We were the most inexperienced team and Dan gave us the tools we needed to believe in ourselves. Other more experienced teams would fear us because they knew we had Dan! Despite being the underdogs, Dan coached us to fly and think like World Champions, a title we then went on to win. When coaching teams of my own, I often ask myself the question - What would Dan say?"
- CLAIRE "SPARKY" SCOTT, 3 TIME WOMEN'S WORLD SKYDIVING CHAMPION AND RECIPIENT OF BRITISH ROYAL AERO CLUB AWARD AND FAI MEDAL FOR OUSTANDING ACHIEVEMENT IN SPORT
I just finished reading "Above All Else" by Dan Brodsky-Chenfeld...picked it up yesterday and finished it today. To my skydiving friends, you likely already have an interest in Dan's wisdom...but I want to take time to recommend this book to ALL my friends...It isn't about skydiving... it's about life... and what YOU need to do to accomplish your personal goals, professional goals, relationship goals...The strength of the message I received is this...If there is something you desire in this life, a better job, greater wealth, greater happiness...and you have not yet achieved it...The sooner you assign accountability to YOU, and assess and revise YOUR commitment to what you say you want...the sooner you will proudly achieve your stated desires.
I am thankful I met Dan when I lived in Arizona for two and a half years...I am thankful I got to experience both east and west coast skydiving...and I am thankful to have read this book, to reinforce my belief that only through overcoming challenges you fear will defeat you, can you begin to realize the potential ahead of you.
Thanks Dan...Well done my friend...a very good read.
- Barbara Harding