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Men's Health Ultimate Dumbbell Guide: More Than 21,000 Moves Designed to Build Muscle, Increase Strength, and Burn Fat Paperback – July 24, 2007

4.1 out of 5 stars 83 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

MYATT MURPHY has written articles on exercise, lifestyle, nutrition, and sports for more than 40 worldwide magazines, including Esquire, Fitness, GQ, Men's Health, and Sports Illustrated. A frequent guest on CNN News and Good Morning America, he is the author of Men's Health Gym Bible and Men's Health The Body You Want in the Time You Have.

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 288 pages
  • Publisher: Rodale Books; 1 edition (July 24, 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 159486487X
  • ISBN-13: 978-1594864872
  • Product Dimensions: 7.6 x 0.8 x 9.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (83 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #199,618 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
Just about everything you ever wanted to know about dumbbells. The book is divided up into three parts. The first part, the truth about dumbbells, explains all about the different types of dumbbells. The second part, the master moves, shows you the exercises you can do with a dumbbell which includes many pictures and instructions. This part makes up about 80% of the book. And finally, part three, a million moves for your muscles, essentially provides the reader with tips and suggested routines.

A great resource if you're into dumbbells, readers who lift regularly might also be interested in Bulletproof Your Shoulder to prevent shoulder problems a lot of lifters eventually get.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I like this book. It would have been perfect except for the fact that "Dumbbell Training for Strength And Fitness" by Matt Brzycki is better. This book is broken down into three parts: The Truth About Dumbbells, The Master Moves, and A Million Moves for Your Muscles. Essentially, this is a good book for someone who wants to master basic movements and then advance by combining exercises for dual body parts. With this in mind, it is an excellent resource for someone with dumbbells and a few props: adjustable bench, swiss ball, and a step.

The first section gives an excellent introduction to dumbbells & pros and cons of different types of equipment. I personally use the Powerblock dumbbells. The second section has pictures of each basic, intermediate, and combined set of exercises. Part three is small, but has example exercises and helps you to customize a workout.

There was one odd thing about the book. There is a picture of a kettle bell on one of the introductory pages, but there isn't a mention of them or their use anywhere in the book. This was an unexpected surprise and then letdown. In all it is a great book. It only gets four stars because it *does not* give the ideology behind different workout techniques: high intensity training, pre/post exhaust techniques, progressive workload, 21s, 3X3 workouts, supersets, forced negatives, etc.

My advice is to buy this book or Brzycki's and also get Arnold's The New Encyclopedia of Modern Bodybuilding.
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The book's basic design is that it shows you the core dumbbell exercises (about 40) like bench press, lunges, shoulder press, etc. Then in each section it details how by doing things like changing your grip, foot position, using a bench, etc. you can perform variations of the core exercises. That's how it comes up with the 21,000 moves.

It's a good value if you are new to using dumbbells or if dumbbells are the only type of resistance training that you are planning to do. I like the section entitled "Combine & Conquer" where it shows you how you can combine moves into one exercise in order to expedite your workout. Note, all the pictures in this book are in black & white.

However I think another book, The Men's Health Big Book of Exercises: Four Weeks to a Leaner, Stronger, More Muscular YOU! by Adam Campbell (or the Women's Health Big Book of Exercises), is a better value. This book has pretty much the same dumbbell exercises but also has body-weight exercises, cable exercises and free weight exercises. It has good sections about nutrition and and sample workouts. The pictures are in color. This book is appropriate for beginners to advanced; and home-only exercisers to gym rats.

Lastly, almost all the exercises in these books can found on the internet, for example at websites like [...] or [...]. However, I like to have a book of exercises to refer to when I'm looking to change up my workouts.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
The book has some good features but they don't outweigh the negatives. The exercises have great descriptions of how to do them but they lack the the list of what not to do. The exercises are grouped alphabetically which I thought was a good idea until I tried to do them. Since exercises are usually done in a specific order having them alphabetical it takes more time to find the ones you want to do first. Also, not every exercise book gives each exercise the same name. The book also lacks in listing good routines to get you started.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I compared the hard copy version of this book to the kindle version. The book as a whole is quite good for beginners and gives sound advice.

The kindle version is useable if your already familiar with the book and wanted a quick referrence. The difficult part of the kindle version was the formatting was difficult to review based on a image on one page then the description several pages later. This wasn't practical when you wanted to workout and experiment with different variations of the exercises.

The appeal for the kindle version was it's portability, abillity to highlight or add comments to sections. Another valuable feature is the abillity to copy and paste text to be used when designing your own workouts whether in a word processor or spreadsheet. Please note that the copy and paste feature is availabe on the desktop kindle reader only.

Based on my experience with kindle version of the books, I'm leaning toward using some of the workout apps. They're easier to use during a workout. For designing and research of workouts I found the e-version to be helpful.
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