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90 of 144 people found the following review helpful
on November 15, 2006
I was curious to read what all the fuss was about after reading so many sterling reviews here, but I found this book to be just another mish-mash of current trendy ideas in the fitness world. Most of this information has been around for 50-100 years, before steroid bloated "bodybuilders" and the comic magazines that eulogize them destroyed any resemblance to common sense and reality about working out with weights. The beginner may get a few good bits of information and will probably make some muscle gains - as most beginners do on just about ANY program, but the experienced lifter he or she will soon be looking elsewhere for routines that will give results.

Schuler states in the book that the reader should not necessarily look at a trainer's body or state of fitness to judge if what he is teaching is valid or if he has real knowledge of how to train and therefore how to train others - and when I looked at the photos of him and Cosgrove I could see why he made this disclaimer. They may be fit (depending on your interpretation of "fit") but they are not much to look at. Personally I do think that if someone talks the talk he should be able to walk the walk.

Schuler acts like he and Cosgrove - I guess due to their brilliance and number of trainers certificates - just discovered that multi-joint compound movements are the best even though this has been known since the early 1900's. Schuler also relates how he tried the squat once and then didn't perform the movement again for 12 years and yet he was a writer for "Men's Fitness"? Sorry, but any weightlifting/fitness instructor should know that the squat and deadlift, military press, chins and dips (and to a much lesser extent the bench press) are the cornerstones of any good routine! When I first started lifting 30 years ago I went to the library and found a beginners book that taught me to Squat, Deadlift, and Press - and the book was written in the 60's! In fact that book would be more useful for any aspiring weight-trainee that this one.

As for the various programs in the book, good luck to anyone who attempts to follow them for the 52 week period outlined. Most of them will quickly lead to over-training for the majority of trainees not using steroids. I got the impression that the routines are formulated based on a conglomeration of various training techniques as espoused by West Side, Russian "Secrets", latest "weight-loss" fads, etc. Hey, this looks good let's throw it in! Also, there is one major flaw in these programs - the amount of weight one should be lifting for the stated number of reps has been conveniently omitted. Prescribing 6 sets of 3,2,1,3,2,1 reps is fine but is this with the same weight for each set or should the weight be increased? Oops!

I think the reason you are seeing 5-star ratings for this book is because so many cookie-cutter certified trainers who work at a fern and juice-bar spa, have trained with weights for 6 months or so, and now are "experts" and "qualified" to train others, have very little concept of how to effectively train with weights, so they read a book like this and it provides them with information they have not been exposed to before, whereas anyone who has taken the time to do real research into weight training methodology or has been fortunate enough to join a real weight lifting gym rather than a fern and juice-bar spa, will already know that full-body programs based around the multi-joint, compound movements are the way to go.

Any serious weight-trainee would be much better served reading books by Bill Starr (mentioned in this book), Stuart McRobert, Perry Rader, and some of the old-timers who developed tremendous physiques and strength without "scientific knowledge" so highly thought of today.

After a year or so The New Rules of Lifting will become the "Out-Dated" Rules of Lifting as writers like Schuler/Cosgrove will contradict almost everything in the book with the latest, greatest "trends" of fitness. Why? Well, in order to sell more books of course!
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2 of 4 people found the following review helpful
on July 27, 2007
About the only thing that could have made this book the perfect purchase would have been an included CD-ROM/DVD with video of what some of the more complex moves really look like in motion. Aside from that, the principles are articulated with wit and clarity. Read this book, never do another boring bicep curl, and make working out fun and challenging once more.
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on September 21, 2015
Great tips here !
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on August 28, 2014
This is as simple of a system possible. Just follow along for great results!
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on June 10, 2013
Easy and pleasant reading (very engaging writing style AND funny...even for Australian readers!). Easy to understand for people who are not advanced weight lifters. Challenges conventional fitness industry wisdom and provides no-nonsense alternatives that are not hard to follow. It answered many questions I had.

It’s comprehensive and covers all areas of training and nutrition. There is something in this book for everyone who takes his resistance training serously.

Highly recommended!
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6 of 11 people found the following review helpful
on January 27, 2010
I bought the "Mens Health Book of Muscles" lame title but exeptional book by Lou Schuler and Ian King. Now I think it should be mentioned that Lou Schuler is not a strength coach but a fitness writer. He obviously put Ian King concepts and routines into some cohesive book form but did not formulate any of the ideas. I decided to buy "The new rules of lifting" hoping that as a successor it would be the next step and an improved approach to the earlier book. If anything you would hope that Lou is doing enough research to figure out who's lifting ideas he should be writing about. I was dissapointed instead. Many Weeks of the same routine with only variation in reps along with uninspired writing and ideas. Not working muscles in isolation has been a concept supported by more than a few strength coaches in the now not so distant past but this book seems to dummy down the approach. After reading this book I decided to start back on the routines in the first book and will probably seek out some Ian king books. Only good I think for building a base.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on August 8, 2010
Excellent book for beginners. The author use a good sense of humor and has some good aways for beginners in weighlighting. A detailed program which as you become more accustomed to lighting and your body you are able to adjust the program. Overall I really enjoyed the book.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on February 10, 2014
I liked the content itself, but in the Kindle Version, the charts are pretty unreadable. Even increasing the font size does nothing to enlarge the charts. I found this very disappointing and wish I'd bought the paperback version instead.
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4 of 8 people found the following review helpful
on March 13, 2013
This book is written in a style that assumes the average "jock" doesn't like to read. It's as if you are talking to a buddy working out near you at the Gym. The guy likes to talk but you are not sure he really knows what he's talking about, even if he is really built. An example is that the author says that no real man would be seen dead working out on a machine that works the inner and outer legs. I guess this appeals to the macho in us but actually it sounds stupid. I guess those machines are just for "girls". Also you'll discover that aerobics are not for real guys. The author says that guys say they will do it, but the never do. So forget the cardio--such as running, biking, etc. Apparently, the Cardio or Aerobic workouts that are recommended by the Academy of Sports Medicine and other reputable Sports Science organizations are incorrect. Also, Dr Cooper, the original Aerobic Pioneer, should be notified. A point which brings up the idea that your heart will be sufficiently worked out by using weights. This is technically true. But have you ever looked around at the gym and seen how many people are chatting away between sets? How often do you see someone really breathing hard and going quickly from one exercise and set to another? Keeping their heart rate in a 'training range'? So, in conclusion, I have no idea why I bought this book! It was an impulse buy I guess, in the hope there actually was something new in it. I really found it lacking however.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on January 2, 2015
Excellent book, well laid out. Changed my life, I love the work out programs and writing style. So many variations and I look forward to each new phase. I even went out and bought a squat rack.
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