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40 of 43 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Flex to the Max
Revealing some secrets of Eastern European training techniques (remember their Olympic triumphs), Thomas Kurz brings you them from the personal perspective of both athlete and qualified coach. Starting with the theory on muscle make-up and why some people are fast and others can run forever, you also learn to test your own maximum flexibility. Kurz then moves on to the...
Published on 4 May 2003 by B. Monks

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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Confusing and poorly written
I had high expectations for this book given the amount of hype that continues to surround the book. I was disappointed when I later noticed that a lot of the hype appears to have been manufactured by the author himself.
Overall I found the book to be poorly written and extremely confusing. It appears to contain a few simple messages hidden by a lot of jargon and...
Published on 10 April 2009 by Dave C


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40 of 43 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Flex to the Max, 4 May 2003
By 
B. Monks (Manchester, Lancs United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Stretching Scientifically: A Guide to Flexibility Training (Paperback)
Revealing some secrets of Eastern European training techniques (remember their Olympic triumphs), Thomas Kurz brings you them from the personal perspective of both athlete and qualified coach. Starting with the theory on muscle make-up and why some people are fast and others can run forever, you also learn to test your own maximum flexibility. Kurz then moves on to the four types of stretching - fully explained with photo examples - and which one or combination will suit you and your sport best, and how to arrange a training program.
Included is instruction on how to, and how often, to stretch, and which exercises to avoid as they are detrimental to maximum flexibility, as well as how one quick set of exercises in the morning will maintain your maximum flexibility throughout the day, by teaching the brain and muscles that capability so they automatically remember it.
And best of all - the author states his method, if followed correctly, will help you reach your maximum flexibility within one month.
As a martial artist I found the information in this book gave me an immediate improvement, without the pain for gain principles usually expected from normal stretching methods in that sport.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Another piece of the "getting better" puzzle..., 27 Aug 2012
By 
Mark Stipanovsky (London) - See all my reviews
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: Stretching Scientifically: A Guide to Flexibility Training (Paperback)
I specialise in weight loss, addiction, relationships and a few other things and this (daily stretching) is another simple thing that most people overlook until it is either too late or they get a health scare.

This book was recommended to me by one of my health mentors - who also happened to be an ex British martial arts champion - and was his "bible" on stretching...

Like most specialised books, it has too much information for the novice and may rub up a few "experts" the wrong way because it doesn't cover what they want to know or may even contradict their way of doing things...

Thomas Kurz opens the book with some amazing testimonials and photos of people doing the "splits between two chairs - so it seems the information contained in the book works wonders...

The book has eight chapters - beginning with theory and is very helpful if you're a professional sports person or interested in the "How, What, Why, When" type of questions.

Chapter 2 covers how to stretch in more detail and includes information specifically for avoiding injury and also a couple of pages about children and flexibility training.

Chapters 3,4,5 and 6 covers the four main areas of stretching - dynamic, static active, isometric and relaxed. It also has photo's to show you the "how to".

Chapter 7 has sample work out plans and also has illustrations rather than photo's. This chapter is also sport specific - so if you are a tennis player or practice Judo for example there are specific stretching plans.

Chapter 8 is a Q&A and is quite in depth and worth glancing through before you actually read the rest of the book.

Taking 5 or 10 minutes every day to stretch is something so simple that most of us overlook how beneficial to staying well and being able to "keep" our full range of movement.

And being able to extend and stretch and move "better" is another reason books like this are so important to own...

Setting a goal to "learn how to do the splits" seems quite inconsequential and not worth the effort - until you realise - that you're so out of shape - you can't even bend over to tie your laces...

So - add this book to your list of "getting better" books and read it now and again for a refresher - and practice stretching for a wee while every day...

Simple stuff that works...
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Confusing and poorly written, 10 April 2009
This review is from: Stretching Scientifically: A Guide to Flexibility Training (Paperback)
I had high expectations for this book given the amount of hype that continues to surround the book. I was disappointed when I later noticed that a lot of the hype appears to have been manufactured by the author himself.
Overall I found the book to be poorly written and extremely confusing. It appears to contain a few simple messages hidden by a lot of jargon and hyperbole (to make the author sound more important and clever than he is?).
It was a real chore to get through the book and I had to read and re-read sections to find the point being made - often without success. By the end of the book I felt like I had wasted a lot of time and knew very little more about stretching than when I started.
The very lenghty FAQs section at the back is a clue to how confusing and unhelpful the book can be. Many of the questions (from people who had read the book and been as confused as I was) mirrored my own questions after reading the book. Most often I found the answers in the FAQ section to be patronising and dismissive "this will be obvious if you just read page XX in the section on YY again" was a typical response. My thoughts were "if it was obvious after reading this section then we wouldn't be asking the question".
I eventually threw the book away. If I still had it I would send it to you for free so that you wouldn't have to waste your hard-earned money on another copy.
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5.0 out of 5 stars No fuss, just the right information, 4 Dec 2012
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This review is from: Stretching Scientifically: A Guide to Flexibility Training (Paperback)
All previous books I have been reading about strectching lacked methodology and in-depth explainations, but this book has it all. whether you just want a quick method to fit efficient strectching sessions into your work out schedule or you want all the physiological details about stretching, everything is laid out clearly. I have been using it for a few weeks and I have already seen some improvements. This book is especially usefull by advising specific stretching techniques depending on the sport praticed by the reader.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Great book!, 30 Mar 2010
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This review is from: Stretching Scientifically: A Guide to Flexibility Training (Paperback)
Go's into a lot of detail to address the way in which our bodies can adapt through stretch training.
It will help your gains!
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5.0 out of 5 stars A very good book, 11 Mar 2010
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This review is from: Stretching Scientifically: A Guide to Flexibility Training (Paperback)
The Thomas Kurz book on strtching is a very good book.
It is well written and it explain various aspects of the stretching.
Static, dinamyc,Isometric are very well explained. A must reading for martial artist

Gianfranco
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4.0 out of 5 stars Stretching Scientifcically, 1 Dec 2009
By 
This review is from: Stretching Scientifically: A Guide to Flexibility Training (Paperback)
Good book, very detailed, illustrations could be a bit better, just heavy going. Overall good technical book
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Badly written book, 28 Oct 2009
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This review is from: Stretching Scientifically: A Guide to Flexibility Training (Paperback)
I'm sure the information I need is contained within this book and it was recomended to me by my doctor (a sports specialist) but its just so badly written I found it impossible to gain the information I required. The author has a patronising tone and a waffling style that made me want to find him and kick him in the shins (I can't kick higher than that as I still know nothing about stretching). Having owned this book for a couple of months I have tried to read it on several occasions and given up - if you have a normal attention span don't bother.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The best is now even better, 4 Sep 2009
By 
A. Jeffries "@andyjeffries" (Stevenage, Herts, UK) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Stretching Scientifically: A Guide to Flexibility Training (Paperback)
I had the first revision of this book back in, I guess, the late 80s and it was incredible. I was young, but managed to go from about 18 inches above the splits in to a full front split with either leg over a 2-3 week period.

Fast-forward 20 years and after a layoff from Taekwondo flexibility fell by the wayside. I got this book a few weeks ago and my flexibility has gone back from kicking just about head height to almost vertical when doing axe-kicks. The gains you can make by following Tom Kurz's methods are incredible.

This book is fairly similar on content regarding stretching methods compared to the earlier editions, but this one backs it up with a lot more scientific references and background information (useful when you're trying to convince other people to change).

I'd highly recommend this book for anyone wanting to improve their flexibility.
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6 of 11 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Stretching Scientifically, 9 Feb 2008
By 
richard (Oldham, United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Stretching Scientifically: A Guide to Flexibility Training (Paperback)
This book is very useful and well set out so enable anyone who doesnt know anything about stretching to learn any understand the muscle physiology. As a physio, I also found it useful because towards the end it goes into quite a lot of detail although the general athlete 1. will probably get confused at this point, and 2. doesnt really need this much detail.

I thought this book was awesome until I reached the last few chapters when I often began to think tom should maybe get his head out of his ass. he is very big headed and boasts thinking he knows more and is better than anyone else. fair enough I can cope with this, but he steps over the line when he makes derogatory comments about martial artists because they use different stretches to what he recommends. be warned that if you are one of these then the comments such as "ignorant instructors" and "morons" are likely to be found offensive. surely the reason we read the book is to learn and improve the techniques we use. if we already did everything 'perfectly' then we would not be reading his book so i feel it is out of order for him to slag us off like he does.

I would give the book 5* for the content on stretching but tom kurz's attitude just ruins the book.
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