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Delavier's Anatomy for Bigger, Stronger Arms Paperback – September 21, 2012
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About the Author
Frédéric Delavier is a gifted artist with an exceptional knowledge of human anatomy. He studied morphology and anatomy for five years at the prestigious École des Beaux-Arts in Paris and studied dissection for three years at the Paris Faculté de Médecine.
The former editor in chief of the French magazine PowerMag, Delavier is currently a journalist for the French magazine Le Monde du Muscle and a contributor to several other muscle publications, including Men's Health Germany. He is the author of the best-selling Strength Training Anatomy, Women’s Strength Training Anatomy, The Strength Training Anatomy Workout, The Strength Training Anatomy Workout II, Delavier's Core Training Anatomy, and Delavier's Stretching Anatomy.
Delavier won the French powerlifting title in 1988 and makes annual presentations on the sport applications of biomechanics at conferences in Switzerland. His teaching efforts have earned him the Grand Prix de Techniques et de Pédagogie Sportive. Delavier lives in Paris, France.
Michael Gundill has written 13 books on strength training, sport nutrition, and health. He coauthored The Strength Training Anatomy Workout, The Strength Training Anatomy Workout II, Delavier's Core Training Anatomy, and Delavier's Stretching Anatomy. His books have been translated into multiple languages, and he has written over 500 articles for bodybuilding and fitness magazines worldwide, including Iron Man and Dirty Dieting. In 1998 he won the Article of the Year Award at the Fourth Academy of Bodybuilding Fitness & Sports Awards in California.
Gundill started weightlifting in 1983 in order to improve his rowing performance. Most of his training years were spent completing specific lifting programs in his home. As he gained muscle and refined his program, he began to learn more about physiology, anatomy, and biomechanics and started studying those subjects in medical journals. Since 1995 he has been writing about his discoveries in various bodybuilding and fitness magazines all over the world.
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Delavier's book has information that can be found elsewhere. For example, techniques such as cheat repetitions, forced repetitions, drop sets, and rest pause have been around for years and can be found in other books, but they are definitely not in all books. If you are advanced enough to want to start an arm specialization phase, having that information is essential. Likewise, the exercises themselves are pretty standard although I will say that he does illustrate how to make some more effective. I especially like the fact that he shows how to use bands (search the web for Jump Stretch (TM)(also see http://www.elitefts.com/shop/bars-weights/bands.html ) Bands to see what I'm talking about when I say bands) to make certain exercises -- barbell biceps curls, push-ups, and narrow-grip bench press - more effective. Oddly, he dosn't show a band being used in the triceps cable push-down. BTW, if you purchse bands for arm exercises, you probably will want to start with the light bands...at least for triceps push-downs. Another nice touch that Delavier adds are sections in each exercise description titled Advantages, Disadvantages, Variations, Helpful Hints, and Risks.
There is also a 19-page chapter titled Preventing Pathologies which illustrates and lists the causes of some common training injuries that can result from improper training such as overuse, using weights that are too heavy, improper stretching. personal anatomical anomalies, etc.
But, there are some things about this book that bother me. The first is that he does not really caution strongly enough about over-stretching the shoulder capsule. Each person has his own limits on flexibility with some people being a lot more flexible than others. Delavier does say not to do excessive stretching exercises for the shoulders. I would go further and say find out what your normal range of motion/ degree of flexilbility is in each joint and make sure that any given exercise does not go beyond that range. Parallel bar dips, for instance, can easily overstretch the shoulder joint. Ideally, the floor or a box should prevent the exerciser from dropping too low. Likewise, many chest press machines or dumbbell flyes can overstretch the shoulder. Maybe another entire book devoted to weight training injuries is in order. Pardon my soap box.
Also, some of his illustrations show a straight bar being used where an EZ curl bar should be used. I'm thinking of reverse curls and a couple of others.
Finally, let me say that much of what is described in the book is for young, healthy, fast-healing folks. If you're a geezer or approaching codgerhood, have an orthopedic surgeon check you out looking for signs of arthritis, etc. You may want to concentrate on correcting bad posture first and using joint sparing strength training protocols such as isometrics or SuperSlow(TM)/quasi-isometrics.
All in all though, I am very happy with Delavier's book. For me, it was money well spent.