Denise Austin's article "You Should Walk to Work(out)" (November 6) can be commended for promoting walking as an effective and convenient aerobic activity. However, a few corrections need to be made.
Ms. Austin states: "Racewalking will become an Olympic event in 1988 and the sport is expected to open for women in 1992." According to Sal Corrallo of Arlington, National Racewalk Chairman for The Athletic Congress of the United States, racewalking has been an Olympic event since 1908. Martin Rudow, coach of the national men's team, states in a recent book that "Racewalking has been a part of the international track and field calendar since the 1906 Olympic games." It would be correct to state that racewalking is expected to become an Olympic event for women in 1992, probably 10,000 meters. The national women's team is coached by Gary Westerfield and is recognized favorably in such international competition as the prestigious Eschborn Cup race, in Central Park in May.
Second: Racewalking, an established sport which is formalized and judged, must be distinguished from "very fast walking" and "striding," which are not. When Ms. Austin suggests "keep your knees 'soft' or slightly bent" she would place a racewalker squarely in the path of disqualification, since in racewalking the knee must be straight as it passes under the body's center.
These corrections should not detract from the usefulness of Ms. Austin's article for the potential health/fitness walker, but should simply help to maintain her credibility with the growing number of competitive racewalkers in our area. JEAN WOOD Racewalk Director Potomac Valley Seniors Track Club