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The Whartons' Stretch Book: Featuring the Breakthrough Method of Active-Isolated Stretching Paperback – July 9, 1996
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One of the dirty secrets of the fitness world is that for all the talk about the importance of stretching, many athletes and other fit people don't bother with it. It's hard to gauge the benefits, and it seems as if the time could be better spent running, lifting weights, or perfecting sports skills. This sentiment is expressed by Dr. Bob Arnot in the foreword to "The Whartons' Stretch Book," and he says that the Whartons changed his mind. He went to them with a stiffened hip that he thought needed surgery, but after a regimen using the active-isolated stretching technique, his flexibility in that hip had increased 40 percent.
Active-isolated stretching is very different from what your high-school gym teacher made you do. Rather than holding a stretch for a half-minute, you hold it for just two seconds. This prevents the muscle from activating an instinctual braking device to keep itself from overstretching. Traditional stretching forces that braking to occur, and the Whartons think that's not only counterproductive, but dangerous. If you force too deep a stretch while the muscle is doing all it can to keep itself from being stretched, something's got to give. And a torn muscle will repair itself with scar tissue, ultimately making that muscle less flexible.
The Whartons--a father-and-son personal-training team who've worked with many pro athletes and Olympic medalists--show you how to use their stretches to prepare for dozens of sports, from aerobics to wrestling. Nonathletes get an entire section of the book, which describes stretch routines to get your body feeling better after prolonged driving, sitting, standing, and word processing. The routines are a bit on the longish side--20 minutes or more--but it doesn't seem like much time when you think of how long you have to live in your body, and how much better it will feel if you keep it supple and flexible. --Lou Schuler
From Library Journal
This humorously written, nonscientific book is directed at both amateur and professional athletes. The authors describe their "breakthrough method" of Active-Isolated Stretching. The premise is that quick contractions of the muscle opposite the desired muscle will greatly boost athletic or occupational performance. The 20-minute routine is divided into five body zones. Each stretch is held for only two seconds. A minimal time commitment is required for a large payoff in terms of greater flexibility, fewer injuries, and delayed aging. The second part of the book is indexed by sport and occupation and directs the reader to specific stretches that should be performed for each activity. There is also a section on stretching during pregnancy and stretching for seniors. Recommended for large fitness collections.?Goldman Horning, Lawrenceville, Ga.
Copyright 1996 Reed Business Information, Inc.
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Top customer reviews
Another pet peave I have with it, is they say it will only take about 20min to go through all the stretches and that is not true in my experience. It takes me 20min to get through Zone 1 stretches. Then about 20-30min to get through Zone 2-5. I have memorized Zone 1, so I move through it pretty quick, but I still take 20min to do it. I end of doing mostly Zone 1 and 5 to save time.
It needs about 4 times the amount of illustrations. There should be three or four of each stretch showing it from different angles. It would also be helpful to highlight which muscles one is supposed to be stretching, and which ones one is supposed to be contracting. Since I didn't major in anatomy, I had to use google to figure out what I was supposed to be doing. I'm betting most people who buy this book will not have as much perserverence as I had.
After trying the stretches for about 2 weeks, I didn't see much improvement. Then I caught a Youtube of the Dana Torres DVD. I tried the stretch as shown. It was challenging, but the instruction was clear. And better yet, I immediately did the deepest forward bend I've ever done.
I ordered the DVD and gave the Wharton book away. I only wish I hadn't squandered my time and money on it.
It really worked. After doing the stretches in the book for 21 days I was pain free. I also stopped seeing my chiropractor and haven't had any severe pain since. I'm so flexible now that I can adjust my own back. As long as I continue the stretch program there are no back problems. Currently, I bicycle at least 150 miles per week. The occasional spills on my bike do not result in any serious injury because my body is so limber from stretching.
I recommend this book for everyone because when you stay flexible you are less prone to injuries. This book has a stretch for every part of your body.
I had gotten this book from the library, and meanwhile ordered the Aaron Mattes book from Amazon.... However the Whartons book seems better organized and easier to follow, for me, so I just ordered my own copy. I guess that's the best recommendation I can give.