This is, without question, a superb book. Guys, where were you when I was fumbling through the squat and the deadlift ten years ago, falling over and smashing the bar into my shins? This straightforward book contains an immense amount of practical information about several basic lifts: squat, bench and overhead presses, deadlift, and the power clean. Each chapter examines a different lift in great detail (the squat section alone is about 50 pages), explaining everything from the biomechanics of the movement to how to teach it to others. I thought I knew just about all there was to know about these lifts, but I was mistaken. The authors' knowledge is encyclopedic and their treatment of the subject exhaustive. Lifts are literally explained from head (looking forward) to toe (curl them up and drive through heels). Along with explaining correct exercise technique in meticulous detail, the book is full of handy little tips such as looking for shirt folds on the lifter's back to ensure that spinal extension has occurred, using strategically placed duct tape to get wrists into the proper position (no word, though, on how to get it off without some unpleasantness), or how to troubleshoot common form problems. The book concludes with a chapter on training programming so that coaches and lifters can begin to develop training programs based on their own needs. I would call this book an absolute must for any beginner as well as any coach. The practical advice is excellent. --Krista Scott-Dixon, Women's Weight Training
Anyone interested in teaching these major multi-joint lifts should find these chapters most helpful no matter what level of trainee you are instructing. The coaching tips are outstanding, and the photos and line drawings are excellent. The final chapters cover administration and the misconceptions about youth training. These are some of the most interesting in the book and contain a lot of wisdom from both academia and the school of hard knocks. If you are looking for a hard-core instructional text on the basic lifts spiced with humor and years of in the trenches experience, you will enjoy Starting Strength. --Dan Wathan, NCSA Strength and Conditioning Journal
About the Author
Lon Kilgore, Ph.D. is a professor of kinesiology at Midwestern State University (USA) where he teaches exercise physiology and anatomy. He holds a senior faculty appointment in Exercise Science at Warnborough University (UK). His career as an Olympic-style weightlifter began in 1972 as a means to improve his wrestling performance. His wrestling career ended after high school, but weightlifting continued and he has had many national event podium appearances over his 30 plus years of competitive experience. His coaching efforts began in 1974 when he took five athletes to the AAU Junior Olympic Nationals and since those early days he has remained active in coaching national and international caliber weightlifters. He also did a three year stint as a NCAA DII strength coach. He is currently Chair of the Sports Science Committee and a coaching course instructor for USA Weightlifting and a member of the Board of Certification for the American Society of Exercise Physiologists.