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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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Top Customer Reviews
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.
Following are the contents:
What You Need to Know Before You Begin
1. Develop Your Program
20 Steps to Developing Your Arm Workout Program
1. How should you define your goals?
2. How many arm workouts should you do each week?
3. Which days should you work out?
4. Should you work the biceps and triceps separately?
5. What time of day should you work out?
6. How many sets of arm exercises should you do for each muscle?
7. How should you adjust the volume of work?
8. How many exercises should you do during each workout?
9. When should you change exercises?
10. How many repetitions should you do in each set?
11. How quickly should you do repetitions?
12. How do you adjust the range of motion in an exercise?
13. How long should a workout last?
14. How much rest time should you take between sets?
15. How do you determine the most appropriate weight for each exercise?
16. When should you increase the weight?
17. How much rest time should you take between exercises?
18. How do you select exercises based on your anatomomorphology?
19. When should you change your program?
20. Should you take a vacation?
Keep a Workout Notebook
Rate of Progress
Techniques for Increasing Intensity
Volume or Intensity?
Theory of Absolute Strength: A Good Beginning Strategy
Inroad Theory: An Advanced Technique
Summary of These Two Theories
Should You Train to Muscle Failure?
How Should You Breathe During a Workout?
2. Build Your Arms Quickly!
Secrets of Biceps Anatomy
Roles of the Biceps
The Secret to Huge Biceps
Hand Position Affects the Strength of the Biceps
Hand Position Affects the Strength of the Brachioradialis
Let's Talk About Size
A Muscle's Length-Tension Relationship: The Key to Strength
Secrets of Triceps Anatomy
Roles of the Triceps
The Secret to Huge Triceps
Secrets of Forearm Anatomy
Roles of the Forearms
Practical Observations: The Forearm, a Muscle of Extremes
Weak Areas and Pathologies
1. Understanding Weak Areas
Four Obstacles to Developing the Biceps
Imbalance Between the Long and Short Heads
Two Obstacles to Developing the Triceps
Imbalance Between the Heads
Five Obstacles to Developing the Forearms
Forearms Are Too Small
Forearms Are Too Large
Imbalances Between Flexor and Extensor Muscles
2. Strengthening Weak Areas
Strategies for Developing the Biceps
Anatomical Dilemma: You Must Work the Biceps From Every Angle in Order to Develop It!
Anatamomorphological Dilemma: Should You Straighten Your Arms During Curls?
Are You a Hypersupinator or a Hyperpronator?
Adapting Exercises to Your Morphology
Biomechanical Dilemma: Are Curls a Compound Exercise for the Biceps?
If Classic Curls Don't Produce the Results You Expect
Strategies for Developing the Triceps
Learn to Feel the Triceps Well
Strategies for Correcting Imbalances Between the Heads
Is a Fixed or Rotating Schedule Best?
Strategies for Developing the Forearms
Get Bigger Forearms
Develop the Brachioradialis
Correct Imbalances in the Forearms
Strengthen Your Grip
Prevent Your Forearms From Interfering With Your Biceps Training
3. Preventing Pathologies
Understanding Biceps Pathologies
Causes of Pain in the Biceps
1. Vulnerability of the Tendon of the Long Head of the Biceps
2. Three Types of Biceps Tears
3. Focus on Problems With the Labrum
Understanding Triceps and Elbow Pathologies
1. Understanding Elbow Pain
2. Types of Triceps Tears
Understanding Forearm and Wrist Pathologies
Factors That Predispose You to Forearm Pain
Tendinitis in Muscles Attaching to the Epicondyles
Prevent Pain in the Forearms and Wrists
Goals of a Strength Training Program for Preventing Wrist Injuries
1. Beginning Exercises
You Do Not Need Much Equipment to Work Your Arms at Home
Exercises for the Biceps
Exercises for the Triceps
Seated or Standing Triceps Extension With Dumbbells
Lying Triceps Extension With Dumbbells
Exercises for the Forearms
2. Advanced Exercises
Advanced Exercises for the Biceps
Supinated Curl With a Machine
Cable Stretch Curl
Preacher Curl With a Scott Curl Bench
Advanced Exercises for the Triceps
Narrow-Grip Bench Press
Lying Triceps Extension With a Bar or Machine
Seated or Standing Triceps Extension With a Bar or Machine
Advanced Exercises for the Forearms
Hanging From a Pull-Up Bar
Squeezing a Hand Grip
Wrist Roller and Power-Flexor
Pronosupination With a Bar
Arm Workout Programs
Home-Based Programs Using Little Equipment
Programs for the Gym
Strength Training Programs Designed for Your Sport
Rugby, Football, and Team Contact Sports
Basketball, Volleyball, and Handball
Track and Field Throwing Events
Kayaking and Sailing
Powerlifting Program for the Bench Press
I was surprised at the extent to which the author goes with the exercises. For example, he provides instructions for using hand grips. How long to hold them and the kind to use. While I've used them for years and gotten a good deal of strength from them, this information was new to me and most helpful.
Also, while there is a section for gym-based exercises, there is also one for home-based exercises. I thought this was a very thoughtful touch since so many people do their workouts at home and don't have access to gym equipment. Granted many of them require dumbbells and a bench, most people who workout do have those available.
I like the idea of knowing the exact muscle or muscle group I'm exercising and I like being able to plan a workout based on that information. This is an invaluable source for the person looking to improve the strength and appearance of their arms.
-- Susanna K. Hutcheson