Saturday 2 June 2012

Book Review - Total Sports Conditioning for Athletes 50+ by Karl Knopf

I have been away from fencing for the past year with a knee injury.

During that time, I have put on weight and have found out how out of shape that I am since I recently started practicing again. When I saw the book Total Sports Conditioning for Athletes 50+, I knew it was for me.


•Don’t give up your favorite sport.
•Don’t lose to younger competitors.
•Sports conditioning gives you the winning edge!

With targeted programs for fast and effective off-the-court conditioning, this book provides exercises for maintaining the flexibility, strength and speed you need to stay competitive.

By following the regimen in Total Sports Conditioning for Athletes 50+, you’ll see results where they matter most—on the playing field. The combination of aerobic, strength, plyometric and functional training in this book is sure to keep your body game-ready and injury-free. You’ll discover how small doses of the right exercise allow you to continue enjoying your favorite sports for years.

Total Sports Conditioning for Athletes 50+ includes beginner, intermediate and advanced exercises, over 200 Step-by-Step photos plus more than a dozen sport-specific workouts for: Baseball, Basketball, Cycling, Golf, Hockey, Rowing, Running, Skiing, Soccer, Softball, Swimming and Tennis.

Being 58, I like the idea of a book that is age and sport specific. In it, I learned some interesting on exercise and aging. For instance, a normal aging body declines about 2% per year. A fit and active body will only decline by 0.5% per year. A person's flexibility declines by 5% per year, brutal for someone like me who has never been very flexible.

The book says that studies have shown that with proper exercise and nutrition, 60-year-olds can retain 80% of the strength they had when they were 25. The book also says that a U.S. study found that woman are generally happier after 50 and reach their peak of satisfaction at 70. Good news for Teena!

The book gives excellent easy explanations on how a body functions. Not only does the book give sport specific exercises but it also does a great job in explaining proper exercise progression for those over 50. Many of us, myself included, have a "forever 21 complex" and that can lead to injury.

I found it surprising that the thirst mechanism in people over 50 is not as alert as it is in younger people, so an older athlete can run into dehydration issues without knowing they were ever thirsty. I have to remember to hydrate regularly.

There is no fencing specific programs but tennis would be the closest so I am going to pull what I can from that program.

I highly recommend this book to anyone over 50.

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