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Starting Strength: Basic Barbell Training Paperback – Nov 11 2011

4.8 out of 5 stars 66 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 347 pages
  • Publisher: The Aasgaard Company; 3rd edition edition (Nov. 11 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0982522738
  • ISBN-13: 978-0982522738
  • Product Dimensions: 21.6 x 1.9 x 27.9 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 998 g
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars 66 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #379 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Mark Rippetoe tells us flat out that "a weak man is not as happy as that same man would be if he were strong." He then goes on to suggest that women, older people and athletes who do not traditionally lift weights, such as runners and climbers, as well as young men, all benefit from strength training. His book and program back that claim.

Rippetoe's book shows you how-- and why-- to safely and productively lift free weights, and why to avoid crap like stability balls, plyometrics, balance boards, Pilates, gym machines and so forth. Five exercises are all it takes: the squat, dead-lift, bench-press, the power-clean and press. Pull-ups are also helpful. Your workout in a free-weight gym-- including warm-up-- is 45 minutes, and Rippetoe's program gets you massive gains in strength with two or three sessions a week. This is *functional strength* training, not bodybuilding: Rippetoe wants you to be able to pick up your three and five year old at the same time as the two bags of groceries, three-in-one a haulbag over a slab, and play soccer and run up- and downhill without destroying your ACL.

The program has worked for me. I can haul 100 lb of rope up the Stawamus Chief and crank out 70 km cycling days easily, with no day-after pains, and I can get a whole lot more affortlessly done around the house. Two 45-min sessions a week have resulted in a doubling of weight over three months, and I thankfully havn't gained much weight or bulk (but I have started getting comments from a few ladies, heh heh). The body-buzz from a weightroom session is blissful and that I see gains each week is quite motivating.

Bottom line: Rippetoe's book and program work. Go forth and lift.
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Format: Paperback
I'd recommend this book for just about everybody who lifts weights. Beginners can greatly benefit from it to learn good form right off the bat. Experienced lifters might also want to check it out because, a) there's always more to learn, and b) your form might not be as good as you think it is.

So what's the book about anyway? Well, the Cliff Notes version is that its a book on how to lift weights PROPERLY using a barbell. A few details:

-the book spends a lot of time discussing the details of all the basic barbell exercises, such as the squat, the bench press, the deadlift, the press, and the power clean. As you might have guessed, the book devotes a whole chapter to each movement. For instance, the squat is discussed on pages 8-63, while the bench press is discussed on pages 66-102- I give you the page numbers to show you how in depth the book goes into each exercise

-you'll learn a lot of details that are often times neglected, such as grip, and the placement of other body parts that are indirectly used during an exercise. As an example, the book spends about 4 pages discussing foot placement during the bench press exercise.

-the book is filled with pictures and diagrams. In fact its hard to find a page that doesn't have one picture or diagram on it.

-the book does also cover "useful assistance exercies" as well, such as chin-ups, dips, rows, barbell curls, etc.

The book ends with a nice section that talks about a lot of "miscellaneous" things, things such as the order of doing exercises, warm-up sets, nutrition, soreness and injuries, etc. As you can see, this is a pretty detailed and comprehensive book, a book I think all weight lifters, beginners and experienced, will get a lot out of. Also, weightlifters with bad shoulders should check out Treat Your Own Rotator Cuff.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Thanks to this book I gained 90 pounds in 8 months. I can now squat 250 pounds, dead lift 380 and bench 75. Highly recommended for beginners and lovers of milk. Extremely detailed and thorough examination of squats and several other somewhat useful exercises.
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As a beginner I'm happy to say that this book was worth every dollar. The five most basic functional lifts are thoroughly discussed and simple language is used to describe each movement. An emphasis on form is of key importance in this book. The details of each lift are easy to understand in addition to the photos and illustrarions.The reader can tell the author cares about lifting safely and to ensure beginners are not injuring themselves with incorrect form. Mark gives reasoning as to why common things people do while squatting, bench pressing, and deadlifting can be very dangerous. There is programming for beginners and novices and gives examples as to how people should expect progress. It also goes over nutrition and recovery steps in detail for smaller and bigger people. The amount of information in this book is astonishing.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I bought the 3rd edition of Starting Strength along with the DVD. I read the book first, and then watched the DVD. I would recommend using the products in this order. The book goes into explicit detail regarding the correct mechanics of the lifts, the reasons for doing the lifts in the ways recommended, and how to correct common errors. The DVD shows Mark Rippetoe instructing a variety of people on the basic lifts covered in the book. Understanding the book will help you understand the instructions Mark is providing to the students in the DVD. As dense as the book was, the DVD was simple. However, they each complement each other. I would not want to use one without the other.

I've read most of the instructional books on weightlifting and bodybuilding since I started ligting weights in the school gym 20 years ago. This is the best book I've read. It only covers the very basic lifts, with a brief discussion of ancillary lifts. I would recommend this book to any novice or experienced lifter. I would also recommend the DVD. This was money well spent.

If you buy the book, you should also buy decent OLY shoes as Mark recommends. I have the Nike Romaleos and they are great.
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