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Doody's Review ServiceReviewer: Brad Bowser, MS, PhDC (University of Georgia)
Description: Similar to the first edition of this book published in1999, the second edition provides a comprehensive examination of mechanics as they relate to the human body in exercise and sports. Different than most books on biomechanics, it starts first by describing the underlying mechanical principles that act on the body. It then gives information on those same mechanical principles within the body followed by several sections that apply the mechanical principles to various situations in sport and exercise.
Purpose: In the words of the author, the goal of this book is to present an introduction to the biomechanics of human movement in a clear, concise, reader-friendly manner. This objective is important in helping those students with a limited understanding of math and physics. Due to the simplicity of the examples and the several practice problems at the end of each chapter, many of the difficult mechanical principles are easy to understand.
Audience: This textbook was written primarily for undergraduate kinesiology, exercise science, and physical education students. Furthermore, this book can be used by those students with a limited background in math and physics. It would be particularly useful for those who go into sports studies or coaching. The author is a credible authority in biomechanics and a leader in his field.
Features: Divided into three main sections, the book begins with specific information on the mechanical principles commonly used in biomechanics while filtering out the unnecessary information. By placing mechanics first, the book emphasizes their importance in biomechanics and allows students to see more clearly how mechanics can be applied to the body. The examples and practice problems new to this edition also help the student understand and provide insight into how to apply mechanical principles to the body. One helpful unique feature is the front cover of the book, which includes a quick reference of several equations and abbreviations commonly used in biomechanics. One concern is that those students who have a background in math and physics may find this book too simplistic and redundant.
Assessment: "This book is very effective in explaining how mechanical principles can be applied to the body during sport and exercise for those with limited knowledge in math and physics. The examples and practice problems added to this edition, along with the rearranging of the order of presentation (mechanics being discussed first), justify the replacement of the previous edition. "