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Strength and How to Obtain It Kindle Edition
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His first book was written several years before. During his first trip to America he had been introduced to Alois P. Swoboda and his mind/body muscle contraction methods which were popular with US Presidents, Supreme Court Justices, and leaders and people at all levels of US society. He and Swoboda carried on correspondence that lasted beyond the publication of this book and I believe influenced the expanded emphasis of mental concentration methods included in this book.
The following quotes contain the principles included in this book:
"Exercise in front of a mirror.
It is the brain that develops the muscle. Brain will do as much
as the dumbell, even more.
When you are sitting down reading practice contracting your
muscles. Do this everytime you are sittng down leisurely, and by contracting
them harder and harder each time, you will find that it will have the same
effect as the use of the dumbells or any more vigorous form of
It is very advisable for all pupils to get in the habit of
constantly practicing this muscle-contraction. It in itself is an admirable
exercise, but it is even more valuable owing to the fact that it improves the
will power and helps to establish the connection between the brain and the
muscles which is the basis of strength and condition.
For the beginner the most difficult part of my system is so
fully to concentrate his mind on his muscles as to get them absolutely under
control. It will be found,however, that this control comes by degrees. The brain
sends the message; the nerves receive it, and pass it on to them. With regard to
the Will Power that is exerted it should be remembered that whilst the effect of
weightlifting is to contract the muscles, the same effect is created by
contracting the muscles without the weight.
The question of 'Will Power',has, I am aware troubled a good
many of my pupils. The majority find it difficult to 'put all they know' into
movements with small dumbells, and consequently are apt to be disappointed with
the results of their work. Not infrequently I have received a letter stating
that the writer is doing the exercises an immense number of times, occupying
several hours a day - three or four- or even more! - and yet does not find that
there is very much improvement. The reason is obvious; he is simply 'going
through' the motions and not really working at them."