Best Training Books Thread

I have just finished reading “Beyond Bodybuilding” by Pavel Tsatsouline. Its very very good. Full of routines, tweaks on exercises we have all seen before and loads of exercises most people have probably never seen before. There’s some interesting science thrown in as well for good measure!

So this thread is hopefully going to create a list of the best bodybuilding and strength books out there.

Tell everyone what you have read…

I just finished Chad Waterbury’s new book Muscle Revolution. Fantastic read, tons of great information. Unfortunately I can’t fit his total strength program in right now as I’m gearing up for spring rugby season, but I think I may try the deadlift or squat program over the summer offseason. Next book on my list is probably Zatsiorsky’s “Science and Practice of Strength Training”.

I like Thib’s Black Book for just about anyone getting into training or already into it. It’s a great all around book.
I’m mostly into sports training and I’ve seen a lot of books. That said Thib’s 2nd eBook is terrific for sports training. I really like the stuff from Kelly Bagget. His Speed and V-Jump stuff.
Pavel’s book is good just for the tension concept.

For reference stuff Supertraining is good. And that hard cover olympic book that is a compilation is really technical. I think edited by Pavo Komi.

Haven’t seen Chad’s book yet but I’m sure it’s good.

Juan Carlos has a good program design book and Martin Rooney’s book is good for some grappling/mma training ideas.

Can anyone give me their opinion on the following books? I am considering buying one of them but am not sure which is the best to buy.

1-Essentials of Strength Training and Conditioning (CSCS textbook)

2-Low Back Disorders

3-Diagnosis and Treatment of Movement Impairment Syndromes

4-Kinesiology of the Musculoskeletal System

I know he has gone out of vogue somewhat with the rise of higher frequency training I believe that Ian Kings ‘Muscle’ is my vote for the best beginners weights training book written.

It provides a fantastic overview of exercises, anatomy, rest, basic exercise terminology and theories.

It does however lack in the nutrition and flexibility side of things. Being this as it may, I believe the programs makeup is a work of art.

I would have to go with Ian Kings Get Buffed also Strength Training Anatomy by Frederic Delavier as a great reference book

Does anybody have any recommendations for a book on the whole bodybuilding prep process. like 20 weeks out from bulking to cutting for DIET, lifting, cardio, & sups?


The Cosgrove/Schuler book NEW RULES OF LIFTING gets my vote as the best modern lifting book around.

Reading it is a breath of fresh air. They aren’t preaching Weider-style bodybuilding but the new-old school system of basic exercises, heavy weights, hard work–all supported by the most recent science and Schuler’s customary dash of self-depricating humor (none of this, “So I’m in the hole with 800 pounds on my back…”).

The programs are deceptively simple–I’m doing one of them right now that doesn’t look like much on paper but followed to the letter it’s brutal–and effective.

It depends on why you want the books. If you eventually want to get your CSCS I would pick up that book. Nothing groundbreaking unless you are not very stable with exercise physiology, biomechanics, anatomy, and program design. I have the lower back book but got Christian’s Black Book at the same time and have been just reading the Black Book so far…

I just got Kelly’s No Bull Muscle Book, and so far its a great read. I would highly recommend it.

I just ordered his speed manuel, and I’ll let you know how that is

Ian Kings:

Get Buffed series books I–>III
How to write strength taining programs

Tudor O. Bompa:
PERIDIZATATION-Training theory and methodology<— warning this book is big and hard reading.

[quote]elliotnewman1 wrote:
I have just finished reading “Beyond Bodybuilding” by Pavel Tsatsouline.[/quote]

Pavel was the first name I thought of when I saw the thread title.

His “Power to the People” book is also an excellent read, and very informative if you are not familiar with his stuff already.

Review: Optimal Muscle Training by Ken Kinakin

Great book, no joe weider bull shit, I wish I had it 20 years ago. It’s basically an application of chiropractic and physical therapy modalities to strength training.

And the DVD is great as well. An absolute bargain for the price and the quality of the information.

I’ve read Ian King’s Get Buffed, Waterbury’s Muscle Revolution and Thibadeau’s Black Book of Training Secrets. All excellent, with some great program and ideas for basic understanding. Reading these show how much these trainers actually do agree as it’s easy to think of, say, Waterbury and CT as two opposites from the emphasis in some of their articles. I’d recommend any of these, but Ian King is probably best for beginners, followed by Waterbury.

Next I want to read Pavel and get the Mobility DVD. I also have Siff’s Supertraining but it’s very dense so I’ll leave that for a while, probably a year or more. I only read all of these books this summer so it’ll be a while to implement all of them, figure out what works for me, etc. I’d imagine supertraining (and Zatsiorsky) would be good once you’re advanced to fine-tune programs based on specific needs, using solid scientific principles (and I’m not at that point yet).

Practical Programming for Strength Training

Should be a must read for everyone. I don’t mean just people who lift weights, but everyone alive. How many kids need to read this and realise their body can change based on their efforts. How many lifters need to read this to understand why a lifting routine works rather than just chasing the best routine.

Also Starting Strength, great for technique on the lifts.

[quote]Magarhe wrote:
Practical Programming for Strength Training


1)I will second the vote for “Practical Programming”. It covers a few of the big lifts very well and in great detail: back squat, deadlift, military press and power clean. I am talking about 30 pages to each lift. My only complaint is that it did not really cover the front squat but only mentions it in passing when discussing the back squat.

  1. Poliquin’s Principles.

  2. Chad Waterbury’s “Muscle Revolution”

  3. Jim Schmidt’s “Olympic Weightlifting” with DVD

  4. What about dvds?

    a) “The World’s Most Powerful Lift: Clean” by World Class Coaching
    b) “The World’s Fastest Lift: Snatch” by World Class Coaching.
    c) “Elite FTS Exercise Index Squat-Deadlift” - EFT

books I have read.

Charles Poliquin

Modern trends in strength training
Winning the arms race
German body comp program

Pavel Tsatsouline

Power to the people
Beyond bodybuilding
Super joints
Relax into stretch
Bulletproof abs
Naked warrior

Dr. Mauro DiPasquale
Anabolic solution
The anabolic diet

Dr. John Berardi
Gourmet nutrition
Grappler’s guide to sports nutrition

The strongest shall survive - Bill Starr

Shrug book - Paul Kelso

Dinosaur Training - Brooks Kubik

MILO - Journal for strength athletes (subscription)

Power Factor training - Peter Sisco and John Little

Priming the anabolic environment - Will Brink

Muscle building nutrition - Will Brink

Dr. Randall Strossen
Winning ways, success in the gym and out
super squats

Grip masters manual - John Brookfield

Brian Jones
The complete sandbg training course
The Conditioning handbook

Body weight training for extraordinary strength- Brad Johnson

Encycloppedia of modern bodybuilding - Arnold

and some others that I am forgetting to mention.

Of all the books I have, the ones that I reference the most are the Poliquin books and Pavel’s books. I like both of their stuff for different reasons.

Dinosaur training is a great read for motivation and new training ideas. Old school training like thick bars, barrel lifting and strong man type stuff.

I liked Extreme Muscle Enhancement by Dr. Carlon COlker. Very straight to the point, cover everything you need, especially if you have a rudimentary knowledge of training and nutrition, and doesn’t waste your time with B.S. pictures showing you how to do exercises you should already know anyway.


Actually, I’d love to hear a review of Thib’s more recent book. I dont really trust the reviews as they’re typically written by people with no prior experience or knowledge on the subject matter at hand