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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars This is the best beginner fitness book.
I've read several beginner fitness books and I feel this is the most complete and best organized of them all. This has gotten me motivated and started on the right fitness program for me (I've since confirmed with a personal trainer). Honest and accurate fitness information is laid out in an easily understood way (without any questionable product endorsements). No...
Published on July 12 2002 by Anderson Mills

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Definitely not the best book on fitness.
I'm not a huge fan of the Dummies series, and this book is a perfect example of why. When I picked up this book, I wanted to learn a lot about fitness and how I, myself, can create a great workout routine for my fitness goals and needs. However, the author truly treats the reader as a dummy. Although the authors do a good job of explaining certain concepts, they do not go...
Published on Oct. 14 2011 by R. Boksh


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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Definitely not the best book on fitness., Oct. 14 2011
By 
R. Boksh (Toronto, Canada) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Fitness For Dummies (Paperback)
I'm not a huge fan of the Dummies series, and this book is a perfect example of why. When I picked up this book, I wanted to learn a lot about fitness and how I, myself, can create a great workout routine for my fitness goals and needs. However, the author truly treats the reader as a dummy. Although the authors do a good job of explaining certain concepts, they do not go into enough detail to actually design a thorough workout routine for yourself - and they constantly advise the reader to get a personal trainer in almost every single section of the book. Why would I buy this book if I didn't want to learn the science behind fitness to create a workout routine for myself? They even have a whole chapter on how to find a personal trainer.

Another reason why I didn't like this book is because they really skimped out on the weight training section and would constantly refer to their other book, "Weight Training for Dummies" for more information. No thanks - I don't want to read another book telling me I have to hire a personal trainer to design a workout for me.

Also, I think that photos on correct form would have helped this book out a lot more and would have increased my rating by another star. It was hard at some points to visualize what the authors were talking about during some of the weight training exercises.

Another point I have to make - the jokes and anecdotes in this book make the authors sound very unprofessional, which is why I have a stronger preference for "The Complete Idiot's Guide" series - which has a more professional tone to it. The reason why I chose this book (Fitness for Dummies) over Complete Idiot Guide Fitness was because the edition of this book was just released whereas "The Complete Idiot's Guide to Fitness" was released 10 years ago. But maybe I should have gone with the other.

Don't get me wrong - there is a lot of good information in this book (I did give it 3 stars out of 5), but the tone of the book (and the constant nagging to get a personal trainer) really hurts the credibility of the authors... and destroys the empowering feeling of being able to learn enough information to create your own workout routine from scratch.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Warning! This book is not for everyone!, Jan. 11 2002
By A Customer
Usually the 'For Dummies' series books are geared for just about anyone interested in the topic. From complete beginners to experts who need a good reference book, most of these books are an invaluable resource. But not this book!
I honestly liked most of the exercise tips and techniques (although the stretching section has A LOT to be desired), but this manuscript should have never been accepting for publication. There is too much politics where none is needed. I think this was just another vehicle for their own exercise/political agenda! An example:
PAGE 38 "As with your goals, you can get pretty creative with your rewards. We know a guy who asked a friend to hold $500 for him. If he reached his goal of lising 25 pounds, he'd get the money back and buy new clothes. If he didn't reach his goal, the money would become a charitable contribution to the Young Republicans. Considering that this guy made Jesse Jackson look like Jesse Helms, this was a very good incentive, indeed. The guy lost his 25 pounds."
Nice anecdote. Funny. But only in moderation. This book is full of items like this. No variation of the anecdotes either. They all are of political in nature and slanted the same way. It gets old and not necessary. By itself, the "indeed" makes you think that it was a good incentive, and they are agreeing with the incentive part, but after seeing the same thing over again, the "indeed" took on a new meaning, to saying that avoiding giving money to the Young Republicans was laudible.
A lot of examples are directed for teenage female althetes too. I can understand wanting to push athletics to a young female audience, but seeing the same thing over again is repetitive.
The book should not have been published by 'For Dummies' and marketed to everyone.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars This is the best beginner fitness book., July 12 2002
I've read several beginner fitness books and I feel this is the most complete and best organized of them all. This has gotten me motivated and started on the right fitness program for me (I've since confirmed with a personal trainer). Honest and accurate fitness information is laid out in an easily understood way (without any questionable product endorsements). No "summary" style book is going to have everything, but they have enough information that you feel like everything else is fine tuning.
To address the concerns of another reviewer, the 2nd edition of this book does discuss common fitness injuries.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Let's Get Moving!, April 26 2002
By 
Carlos Quijano Jr. (New York, NY United States) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
If you've been rather inactive in the recent past, this book will help you to get moving. It not only helped me to plan a well-rounded fitness program, but it really helped me to get motivated. The writing is clear and simple, and the authors do a good job at cutting through the jargon fog and giving you the essentials. and, of course, there's that "For Dummies" humor throughout. Best of all, it's cheaper than a personal trainer. In fact, if you need a personal trainer, this book has great advice on chooding a trainer that's right for you!
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3.0 out of 5 stars Idiots 4, Dummies 3, March 27 2002
By 
Chia-heng Yao "milesyao" (Houston, Texas) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
I need an intro book on fitness that covers all the basis well, and in the bookstore it quickly came down to the Dummies book vs. the Idiots.
Similar quality contents on both sides, and the Dummies has a cleaner layout. But I ultimately chose the Idiots for the following reasons:
* The Idiots has a whole chapter on Martial Arts, where Dummies has no coverage at all. It also goes over jazz and a few other dance forms. This is very important to me as I consider the usual machine-based workout too soulless.
* I did not notice this myself, but the editorial pointed out a very important area - how to prevent injuries. The topic is not addressed in the Dummies as far as I can tell from the online TOC.
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2.0 out of 5 stars AKA "Fitness-Related Consumerism for Dummies", March 24 2002
By 
These authors love to shop as much as they love to exercise.
As a fitness neophyte, I turned once again to the Dummies series for its comprehensive, unbiased coverage of broad topics. What disappointed me about this selection is its enthusiasm for expensive gadgetry, club memberships, and professional consultation.
Admittedly, a healthy lifestyle isn't without a price tag, but this is ridiculous. In almost every chapter of this book (including a couple devoted entirely to the subject), you can expect to find one or more words of advice encouraging the reader to go shell out some more dough for one thing or another - a heart monitor, a personal trainer, a water pack, a dietician, a special mat for stretching exercises, etc. If you bought every item they recommended throughout the course of this book, you'd spend a full year's salary and fill a bedroom with all your new junk!
While they do advise against some of the more foolish purchases, such as those fat-zapping electrodes sold on infomercials, they spend little time extolling the virtues of those invaluable exercises you can do for free - stair walking, push ups, pull ups, etc. The chapter on exercising at home is a veritable catalog of the fanciest equipment money can buy, rather than suggestions of exercises you can do on a bare floor with your own body weight.
The authors also go a little skimpy on such topics as nutrition and weight training, but make darn sure to point you in the direction of other related titles in the "for Dummies" series.
If you generally like the Dummies books, do a little more shopping before you put your faith in this one.
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3.0 out of 5 stars Dummies 3 - Idiots 4 (First Half), March 21 2002
By 
Chia-heng Yao "milesyao" (Houston, Texas) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
I need one intro book on exercising and was juggling the "Dummies" and the "Idiots". I liked the organization and the clean layout of the Dummies book, but ultimately decided to go with the Idiots.
The main deal breaker was Martial Arts. The Dummies have no coverage at all (except Tai Chi, which doesn't really count), while the Idiots have a whole chapter. There is also some coverage of other "artistic" aerobic activities like dance. This is very important for me as I personally see the traditional machine-based workouts as too soulless.
The Amazon editorial for Idiots points out the other discrepancy - lack of coverage about injuries. Amazon does not provide sample pages for Idiots, so I couldn't verify just how much it is covered. But it's definitely missing from the Dummies.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Yes, it is for dummies, Nov. 27 2001
By A Customer
This book purports to be little more than a refresher course or an updating of information for those of us that have not been to gyms in a very long time. It lives up to this premise very well, with language that is neither pedantic nor peppy (we've all heard "come on, you can do it!" a few too many times).
The strongsuit of Ms. Schlosberg's and Ms. Neporent's treatise is that it answers most of the questions beginners would either not know to ask or are embarrassed to ask... it takes a while in a gym space to be able to just turn to someone to ask how the treadmill starts up. These women endeavored to clear up these novice-level mysteries while succeeding in not coming off as condescending.
If, however, you would like a more definitive explanation of things (this book glosses over a large amount-- acting more as a relatively thorough overview than a true guide) you might ought to check elsewhere before committing here.
I found Fitness for Dummies to be very helpful as I am nearing thirty and getting back into gyms that have contraptions I could not have begun to understand before reading this book.
Good luck out there!
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5.0 out of 5 stars The perfect book for the rest of us!, Oct. 22 2001
By 
Jerry L. Cage (Granger, IN United States) - See all my reviews
As a middle-aged fellow trying to get back into shape, "Fitness for Dummies" provided a wealth of information missing in other books. How to pick a gym, what to pack in a gym bag, what exercises to do and why, how to act in the weight room - all the important stuff is in there to get you to take that big step and begin getting fit. I liked it enough I have purchased copies for two of my relatives!
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5.0 out of 5 stars Exemplary fitness book, June 19 2001
By 
Shawn Kresal (San Francisco, CA) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
If only all Dummies books were as good as this one. Extremely well-written with the most clear language one could ever hope for. Full of anecdotes, definitions, and plenty of myth busters. The personalization from the authors gets tiring ("Suzanne thinks that...", "Liz's grandmother once..."), but it is tolerable. Many, many aspects of fitness are covered in remarkable thoroughness. General weight lifting (both at home and the gym), supplements, gym etiquette, trainer tips, aerobic machines and classes, and fitness video buying are all covered with impressive detail. (If buying this book used, be sure to get the 2nd edition as it covers many topics that didn't exist with the first edition: Pilates, Physio balls, elliptical trainers, Bikram Yoga, and more.)
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Fitness For Dummies
Fitness For Dummies by Liz Neporent (Paperback - Dec 7 2010)
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