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on February 28, 2004
This is a high level scientific book. Before reading it you should be familiar with knowledge of human anatomy and exercise physiology - undergraduate level.
If you want to read about everything you need to know about physical conditioning in just one book this is what you were looking for.
I've expected some more information on the athletic training subject, but you can not hope to find everything the exercise science has to offer in a 650 pages book. However the book respects its title ofering you "the essentials".
I also admire the author's objectivity about some athletic nutritive supplements - it is telling you that you shouldn't waste your money on many of them.
Because it is not written by a single author it makes you look back and forth and sometimes repeats some information.
Overall is a complete and reliable resource of scientific knowledge. I go back to it anytime I think I need to remember something.
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on February 6, 2002
[....]This is THE book if you are preparing to take your CSCS exam. Every chapter is followed by sample exam questions. It's all here, from physiological basics to adavanced program design considerations. If you're serious about understanding the in's and out's of numerous modes of exercise (ie. aerobic, anaerobic, plyometric, etc, etc.), and the differing physiological responses that accompany, than this needs to be on your bookshelf! Everything from nutrition to age and sex specific tranining considerations can be found in this book. Written in terminology easily understood by most people with a health sciences background but accurate and in-depth from cover to cover. This is a phenominal book that as a HUGE bonus has one of the most complete indices re: relevant exercise physio literature that I have ever seen published. A must have reference piece for any library or collection.
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on October 19, 2000
I have read several weight training books over the past few months and this is the best one I have seen so far. It is rough going in spots because of the techinical language used by the authors; however, the explanations are wonderful and the pictures are nothing less than outstanding. Numerous charts and graphs help the reader understand the text. So much of what is written about bodybuilding and weight training is fluff, not backed up by true research. In this publication the authors are careful to use only the best research findings and they are excellent at saying when something is thought to be proven verses actually proven.
I highly recomend this text to anyone interested in weight training. I read it from cover to cover and was not bored. It is excellent as a reference tool as well.
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on September 23, 2001
This books separates the reality of training with the nonsense some authors try to convince the everyday novice of. Most books are based on principles that bodybuilders, who are on ridiculous amounts of steroids, utilize. For a natuaral athlete that wants to manipulate his/her own bodily functions to maximize potential gains in the overall field of physical conditioning, whether it be for strength, size, cardiovascular, or plyometric enhancement, this is the ideal book. It begins with an overview of the muscle system, moves into the nervous system, and continues onward, dissecting all the main facets of conditioning into smaller pieces so as to cover EVERYTHING, and I mean everything. This book is not recommended for novices or the uneducated.
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on August 6, 2002
This is by far the greatest book ever written on the subject of strength conditioning. It is packed with information on everything, and I mean everything, that you need to know about muscles, strength training and overall conditioning. I could not put it down, the pictures and charts and illustrations are invaluable making it easier to understand. Whether you are a begginer or an expert on the subject of strength training, this book can help you meet your needs. If you want to become a personal trainer, this is the key. If you want to improve your own body and strengths, this is also the key. It is a win-win book, you can't go wrong. I have nothing bad to say, other then it is heavy, but's thats because it is packed with so much stuff!
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on August 16, 2000
I just received this new edition in the mail and I am thoroughy enjoying it. Very detailed, yet pretty easy to read. I would recommend this book to anyone that is training athletes or is interested in strenght training (for any reason). This book is a great resource of knowledge even for people with advanced knowledge in strength training.
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on February 5, 2003
What a great text ! Here is a deep yet clearly/visually presented text on physical training. I've read a number of
strength-training books, but most are dominated by the
body-building mentality. This book will make you think
like a coach and help you understand sport-specific
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on January 6, 2002
An excellent book, covering all aspects of conditioning - strength, flexibility, cardiovascular, speed, agility, periodization - it's all there. Up to date, well documented. One to have if you're a personal trainer or strength coach; essential if you're studying for the CSCS exam with the NSCA.
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on May 30, 2004
First what this book is NOT:
If you are in a big hurry to start exercise or if you do not like the thorough scientific approach to bodybuilding, go for other books. Also this book does not give the exercises (just very few basic ones).
Finally what this book is for:
The book is intended for training schools; it gives only the scientifically proven facts, and gives these facts clearly and is very well organized.
I give it 5 stars because it is exactly what it says it is (very honest approach). The good thing is that bodybuilding world is full of dirt (wrong or suspicious information is everywhere), so this book would clear the mess in the non-educated person's mind and give the most precious information - the PROVEN ESSENTIAL information. And by proven I do not mean proven by Joe Amateur who tried that on himself only - as usually is the case, but SCIENTIFICALY proven. That is the biggest advantage of this book.
Unfortunately, this book cannot guard you from all frauds in the field of bodybuilding because the field is too complex and no book can cover everything. If you start with this book, then if you buy some books on exercising, then exercise regularly as your (new) way of living, than think a lot about your training, and maybe some other things...., you will enjoy the most benefits of good health and strong body. A lot of ifs, I know, but every knowledge is hard to grasp.
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on July 5, 2003
I purchased this book mainly because of the positive remarks I read here on Amazon. The reviews are helpful in guiding my purchase most of the time but this time I got burned. There are some very important things that I have to clear up.
1. This book is NOT organized well. Similar pieces of information that would make more sense in the same section or chapter are many chapters apart. I spend a great deal of time flipping between chapters linking one fact to another trying to piece together underlying principles or purposes behind similar functionality, AND angrily wondering why so many similar sections were haphazardly scattered throughout the text.
2. The writing is DRY. I am a scientist, and I hate having to plow through technical, monotonous, fact-driven, unispired lectures. Scientific writing does not have to cause headaches or blurry vision. I'm not looking for a text that romances me with an ambiance of literary magic. I just want something worded in a way that is lucid, meaningful, and to the point ("Understanding Nutrition" is an excellent example of intelligent scientific writing that is also very readable). This text in sharp contrast is choppy, cumbersome, and aggravating.
3. "However" I am so sick of seeing this word thanks to this text. However shows up in the strangest places. Over and over again. It is very distracting to have to constantly stumble across this word while trying to make sense of the rest of the drivel surrounding it.
I am sure this book is a wealth of valuable information. It is just not worth it for me to spend the extra time and energy mining the text for that information. There are other books that cover the same material just in a logical order and worded in a more conversational -- less clinical -- way.
My last piece of advice is to do what I didnt do: check out the example pages. They wont convey the weak organization because the Table of Contents actually looks kinda organized but its deceptive. They will at least clue you in to writing style, but keep in mind that it only gets worse as the book goes along.
Compare it to the style in the example pages for a very similar book "Physiology of Sport and Exercise".
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