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Vintage 'Know the Game' Books at Country House Library

The ‘Know the Game’ (or KTG) books, published by Educational Productions, have been in print for over half a century and written for anyone who wants to master the rules and basic skills of mainstream sports and pastimes. Country House Library boasts around 50 vintage titles on sports as diverse as Inn Games, Orienteering, Camping and Trampolining to the more mainstream such as Golf, Table Tennis, Swimming and Netball. These timeless publications are the ideal starting point for an inexpensive vintage sports book collection with some issues available at less than £10 each.

  1. Know the Game books - Golf


    With the 150th British Open Golf Championship teeing off on the 10th July at the spiritual home of the sport, St Andrews in Scotland, what better time to perfect your swing and fine tune your putting action? Or, if you’ve never set foot on a golf course, here’s the classic vintage handbook to explain the difference between a sand-wedge and a niblick, a sliced tee-shot and a shank in the rough. With top new boys such as Scottie Scheffler and Jon Rahm locking horns with favourite old-hands such as Tiger Woods and Rory McIlroy, this year’s Open is sure to be a sporting highlight of 2022. New or old to the game of golf, this 'Know the Game' from 1975 will be a hole-in-one choice.

    Vintage Books on Golf at Country House Library →

  2. Know the Game books - Angling


    It may be a surprise to learn that angling is the second most popular participation sport after running; with the 2022 coarse fishing due to open again on 15th June, now’s the time to fetch the tacklebox from the garage and check your stocks of hook, line and sinkers! Whether it’s from the banks of the local river or canal, the harbour wall or beach, or wading in the exclusive salmon beats of Scotland and Ireland, angling is one of those rare pastimes that appeals to all walks of life and all age groups. If you’re an old hand or new to angling, don’t let this 1974 publication from 'Know the Game' be the one that got away!

    Vintage Books on Fishing at Country House Library →

  3. Know the Game books - Tennis


    The world’s favourite Lawn Tennis ‘grand slam’ tournament, Wimbledon, gets under way in south-west London on 27th June for another fortnight of riveting action on the grass courts. For us mere amateurs on the local park courts, there’s always something to improve with our serve, ground-strokes or volleys, and this 1973 issue from ‘Know the Game’ is the place to look. Did you know that the fastest tennis serve ever recorded left the racket at 167mph? You won’t need to be quite that fast to order a copy of one of our vintage books, but it wouldn’t harm to perfect your footwork!

    Vintage Books on Racket Sports at Country House Library →

  4. Know the Game books - Cricket


    Whether you’re heading out to the crease for your local village eleven or have tickets for one of this summer’s Test Matches at Lords, Headingley or Old Trafford, there’s a whole new language to learn for the game of cricket. Will your ‘googlies’ ‘bowl the maiden over’? Do you know the ‘nightwatchman’ from the ‘silly point’? One development in the game since this 1978 publication, is the phenomenal growth in participation and popularity of women’s cricket. Played to the same rules as the men’s game, this vintage edition from ‘Know the Game’ will have equal appeal to female players and spectators of the sport. Bowl over to the Country House Library collection of books on cricket.

    Vintage Books on Cricket at Country House Library →

  5. Know the Game books - Camping


    There can be few households who don’t possess a tent of some proportion, whether it’s a tiny ‘one-man’ to crash in at the end of hectic night’s music festival, or a ‘glamping’ model complete with sun lounge and matching toilet tent. All of us have heard the call of the wild at varying stages of our lives and experienced the deep satisfaction of erecting our accommodation in pouring rain and a gale, or snuggled up in blankets around a campfire, toasting marshmallows and singing along to a guitar. An old hand under canvas, or a newbie to the primus stove and groundsheet, this KTG edition, produced in collaboration with the camping club of Great Britain and Ireland, is the ideal companion.

    Vintage Books on Camping at Country House Library →

  6. Know the Game books - Keeping Fit


    Far too many of us spend too much time sat glued to our computer or television screens or driving even the shortest of distances rather than putting on a pair of walking shoes or hopping onto a bicycle. With easy access to free healthcare becoming ever more uncertain, there’s even more reason to take care of ourselves with regular exercise. The benefits of fitness to our mental health are also now universally recognised. With a bewildering array of fitness ‘regimes’ vying for your attention, this concise and timeless book from ‘Know the Game’ will help you choose some exercise to fit your age and overall level of fitness.

    Vintage Books on Sports & Fitness at Country House Library →

  7. Know the Game books - Badminton


    The racquet sport of Badminton, or ‘Shuttlecocks’ was first recorded in British India during the mid 19th century, being played by expatriate army officers and their wives. Now of course, the modern game is played the world over, an Olympic sport since 1992, and enjoyed by all ages in village halls, gardens and on beaches. One of the primary benefits of the ‘Know the Game’ books is that they were often written and produced in conjunction with the expert associations leading the sport at the time. This one is no different, having the stamp of approval from the Badminton Association of England. Read up on the rules or technique of the forehand, backhand, lob and smash in this ideal place to start your interest in Badminton.

    Vintage Books on Racket Sports at Country House Library →

  8. Know the Game books - Cycling


    There are currently around 20 million bicycles in the UK alone, with an estimated 7.5 million of us enjoying two wheels for commuting, sport, fitness, leisure or play. As motoring becomes ever more expensive, who would bet against these numbers increasing dramatically over the next few decades? This 1964 issue from ‘Know the Game’ will provide a reliable grounding in how the bicycle actually works, how to effect simple repairs, and how to cope with the Highway Code as it applies to the bicycle (warning – check the Highway code advice is still current! We don’t believe ‘cycle lanes’ existed back in the swinging sixties). Freewheel over to the Country House Library collection of books on cycling.

    Vintage Books on Cycling at Country House Library →

Know the Game vintage books at Country House Library

Apart from providing a fascinating glimpse into the recent history of sports and pastimes, these practical and concise vintage guides still make valid reading today, covering the basic, and sometimes obscure, fundamentals of whatever interests you. Here we’ve selected just eight from the many available on the shelves at Country House Library.

Vintage 'Know the Game' Books at Country House Library

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