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Core Performance: The Revolutionary Workout Program to Transform Your Body and Your Life Paperback – Apr 14 2005

3.8 out of 5 stars 26 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 304 pages
  • Publisher: Rodale Books; Reprint edition (May 6 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1594861684
  • ISBN-13: 978-1594861680
  • Product Dimensions: 19 x 1.3 x 23 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 621 g
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars 26 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #166,252 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product Description


“This program has transformed me from a skinny college baseball player with little power into one of the best-conditioned players in Major League Baseball.” ―Nomar Garciaparra, shortstop, Chicago Cubs

“This is the best decision I have ever made with regard to improving and educating myself as an athlete. I just wish I had made it sooner.” ―Mia Hamm, Olympic and world-champion soccer player

About the Author

MARK VERSTEGEN is owner of Athletes' Performance in Tempe, Arizona, a training facility that hosts world-class athletes in virtually every major sport.

PETE WILLIAMS is a contributing writer to USA Today Sports Weekly and Street & Smith's SportsBusiness Journal and has written about fitness and performance for many publications.

Inside This Book

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First Sentence
Over the past decade, I've helped people from all walks of life perform better-not just in sports but also in their daily lives. Read the first page
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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index | Back Cover
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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
Core Performance contains great workouts for overall conditioning. Being in my mid-forties I've tried a little of everything to keep fit and active. I lifted weights for a number of years but had to slow down as I got older due to tendonitis in my knees and a torn calf muscle, mainly due to not being flexible enough. I then tried power yoga which got rid of the tendonitis and tightness but I didn't feel quite as strong. I then tried this program which combines the resistance training and flexibility that I was looking for with a little cardio thrown in to boot. Following this program my body just seems more active and alive plus I've toned up quite a bit too. Part of it is the commitment to working out 5+ days a week but it is also due to the combination of workouts presented in the book.
The Core Performance workouts consist of 4 separate phases which start off relatively easy but get progressively harder. The early phases aren't that difficult although they seem awkward because you are forced to work muscles you don't normally work. These phases also lay the groundwork to prepare you for the later phases which are more difficult. The later phases will get your attention but if you stick with it you will not be disappointed. If you commit yourself to following the workouts presented in Core Performance, the benefits you gain in overall conditioning will more than make up for the price of this book.
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Format: Hardcover
Having read other reviews and having followed the 12 week program for 9 weeks so far (and counting), I can make the following comments:
The positives...
1. The program itself is very effective - it really works the whole body and not just the "obvious" muscles favored by traditional strength training. There are some great exercises in here. If you are serious about conditioning your body, buy this book - no question
2. Some people will not be able to follow the entire program, but I do believe that, even if you don't have the time or willpower to work out six days a week, the routines can still be useful to you in a three or four day a week version.
3. OK, it does take time to work it all out...this is not a simple program and not for a novice to working out. If you are novice, this book will freak you out and probably doom you to failure. Newbies should start with something more simple, if you successfully follow a simpler program for 6-12 months, come back to this book at that time. For the more experienced among you: take the time to work out what the program demands of you, you will be rewarded for your efforts!!
So, having endorsed the overall effectiveness of the book, here's where I think Mark could improve before releasing another book.
1. The science is a little flimsy: Other reviewers have raised legitimate concerns...people like me who are prepared to spend 6 days a week working out want to understand the theory behind it all a bit better. I really hoped for a better understanding of how these exercises impact my musculo-skeletal system. Mark should co-write another version (or another book) with an experienced Chiropractor in order to solve that part of it.
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By A Customer on April 15 2004
Format: Hardcover
I'm another long time exerciser that has become a believer in Mark Verstegen's program. I've had back problems for the last 8 years and after 2 weeks of the exercises in the book I've seen much improvement. I'm also starting to see improvement in quickness when playing ball with my kids. Mark's book provides a 12 week program to increase your functional fitness, not how much you bench press (though that will go up) but giving you fitness for athletic and real world activities.
A suggestion would be for this book to be spiral bound as many people will want to use it as a reference during their training. As an alternative you may want to purchase the CD Mark has on his website. It has printable copies of the exercises and programs as well as video clips of the exercises in an easy to use format.
Also consider purchasing the book Functional Training for Sports by Mike Boyle. Mr Boyle works with Mark at his training center. Mark's book is written more for the hard core athlete, but after reading Core Performance, Functional Training... is very easy to understand and provides many supplemental exercises to add to the Core Performance Program
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Format: Hardcover
I have worked out for years, and despite seeing good increases in my strength and muscle mass, I could never attain the 'athletic body' I wanted. I was also frustrated because my sports performance was diminishing as I got older.
I have read books on stretching, plyometrics, pilates, etc., and have tried to add aspects of them into my workout. This book was the first I have found to incorporate all aspects of fitness - aerobics, strength, balance, flexibility, and power - into one comprehensive workout that doesn't overemphasize one thing over another.
Don't let yourself be fooled when you browse through the pages of this book. This is a demanding workout that will definitely get your blood pumping. In only a few weeks I can see a tangible difference, especially around my midsection, and have lost five pounds. I'm not even to the really hard part yet!
The program starts with basic flexibility, balance, and strength routines, and then progresses into more advanced circuit training and power training while keeping the fundamentals of flexibility and balance. The early sections of the program are structured so that they can be suited to beginners or advanced. Only in the later stages of the program when advanced plyometrics are introduced does it become more demanding than a beginner could handle (i.e., bench presses followed by plyometric pushups).
The best result, though, has been the reaction of others. At a recent meeting, someone asked me if I was a triathlete, because 'I looked like one'. The person who asked was an avid triathlete himself. I also notice women checking me out A LOT, which is great for my ego.
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