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Ultimate Back Fitness and Performance Paperback – April 1, 2004

ISBN-13: 978-0973501803 ISBN-10: 0973501804 Edition: 3rd

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 325 pages
  • Publisher: Stuart McGill, PhD; 3 edition (April 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0973501804
  • ISBN-13: 978-0973501803
  • Product Dimensions: 10.8 x 8.3 x 0.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 5 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (16 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #212,200 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Professor McGill's unique approach is based upon years of scientific research into back function of injured people through elite athletes. His expertise is sought by governments, corporations, professional sports teams and athletes.

Customer Reviews

One of the notes in the preface indicates that the book is self-published "to save you money".
Matt R. Gimlin
Trainers, doctors, physical therapists, and coaches alike should all be required to keep a copy of this book on hand as a great reference tool.
Luke Sniewski
This book is a concise readable anthology on back problems in a form readable for the average person.
N. J. Marchiano

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
Prof. Stuart McGill is a professor in the Dep't of Kinesiology at the University of Waterloo, Ontario. He is the director of its Spine Biomechanics Laboratory.
His famous textbook, "Low Back Disorders", examines back injuries in the light of biomechanics' scientific knowledge, and prescribes exercises and tests for the rehabilitation of injured backs and the prevention of future injuries.
Only in the very last chapter 13 does he consider "Advanced Exercises", those for high-load workers and top performers in sports and athletic competitions, who already have established a solid base of fitness and overall strength.
This new book, "Ultimate Back Fitness & Performance", picks up from there, amplifying the last chapter of the textbook, and is a training manual dedicated to preserving back fitness in high-level physical performance.

In our modern Western lifestyle afflicted with a total lack of demanding physical activity, constant sitting and overeating, strength seems to have become somewhat less useful than in the pre-industrial age. In the new context of our national obsession with heart disease, running and aerobic activity have become the dominant trend in popular fitness, and they are unarguably vital for cardiovascular health.
But they should not obliterate a concern for musculoskeletal fitness, which is essential in all tasks of everyday's life and sports involving lifting, pulling, pushing, throwing and even hitting. Musculoskeletal fitness calls for a more technical and demanding kind of training, where a thorough knowledge of the biomechanics of the back is necessary.

It is amazing how quickly "Ultimate" has become a voguish term in recent fitness literature and on the Internet. You'll find it used and overused all over the place.
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Format: Paperback
MAKE NO MISTAKE - DO GET THE 4TH ED. (2009) INSTEAD,
EVEN BETTER, GET THE 5TH EDITION (2014), READ MY COMMENT/ALERT ABOUT IT.

The posting for the 4th edition can be found under the title "Ultimate Back Fitness & Performance", typing "&" and not "and". Bizarrely, is is not listed in the "Books" Department, but in "All Departments".
Tempted buyers should make sure to get the 4th edition, and not fall victims of the scalpers who use the Amazon market place to extort exorbitant prices for the now obsolete third edition.

Prof. Stuart McGill is a professor in the Dep't of Kinesiology at the University of Waterloo, Ontario. He is the director of its Spine Biomechanics Laboratory.
His famous textbook, "Low Back Disorders", examines back injuries in the light of biomechanics' scientific knowledge, and prescribes exercises and tests for the rehabilitation of injured backs and the prevention of future injuries.
Only in the very last chapter 13 does he consider "Advanced Exercises", those for high-performance workers and athletes, putting the accent on back exercises to be practiced only by athletes who already have established a solid base of fitness and overall strength.
This new book, "Ultimate Back Fitness & Performance", picks up from there, amplifying the content of the last chapter of the previous textbook, and gearing the book primarily to top performers in sports and athletic competitions.

Aerobic activity has become the dominant trend in popular fitness, and it is unarguably of paramount value for cardiovascular health.
But it should not obliterate a concern for musculoskeletal fitness, which is essential in all tasks of everyday's life and sports involving lifting, pulling, pushing, throwing and even hitting.
Read more ›
12 Comments Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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16 of 17 people found the following review helpful By IVYSTUDENT on March 31, 2012
Format: Paperback
Thoroughly researched and logically argued, this book details why and how our sedentary way of life and movement (or lack thereof), threatens our health and well-being by ignoring our physical core. Very detailed and seemingly for those more interested in the theory and practice of physical training, therapy, or medicine. I purchased on recommendation, thinking it was a book with both the theory and a set of exercises a layperson could adapt for everyday exercise. Very few exercises and the description/illustration of these is not helpful in adapting for home use. Finished the book in near fear that any movement would be harmful to me, as opposed to a clear sense of what exercises to do to strengthen the core and facilitate health. The value of the book is dependent upon what you want from it: a layperson's set of exercise with reasoning, or a book on reasoning with few exercises. I expected the former so was disappointed. Yet if I were a practitioner, I would see great value in its content.
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15 of 16 people found the following review helpful By Scott Rae on January 28, 2009
Format: Paperback
Over the years several exercises for back strength and flexibility have been promoted to rehabilitate injured backs or to improve athletic performance. McGill's work has shown that many of these exercises will actually injure backs or decrease performance. As examples he shows that the leg press machine found in most gyms puts the back at risk. The seated trunk twisting machine found in many gyms is a potential disc wrecker as well as training athletically counterproductive movement patterns. Olympic weigthlifting movements currently promoted as part of functional training are discouraged at least without the qualifying the athlete under a certified Olympic lifting coach. A hallmark of McGill's work is his emphasis on endurance of back muscles and on trunk stability.
Several exercises are illustrated and described although I think the presentation could have been better. Given the large number of weight training books that have really bad advice this might be a worthwhile purchase to possibly prevent injury and maybe encourage some the use of some exercises to enhance back health and athletic performance. The price is not cheap -- about $[..]. To order see McGill's website [...] Payment is by PayPal or calling the publisher. Given the price I do not see many casual athletes buying it. For personal trainers. coaches, and authors of fitness books, etc. I think it should be required reading.
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