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"SWAT Fitness": Book Review

Written by Matt Brzycki and Stuart A. Meyers
Operational Tactics, Inc.

In twenty chapters and 320 pages Matt Brzycki and Stuart Meyers deliver a jackpot of fitness information. It should be noted that while the book is aimed at law enforcement personnel the fitness, nutrition, strength training, weight management and training resources provided are useful to anyone.

Meyers and Brzycki complement each other well in this work. Meyers brings his expertise in law enforcement, which includes training SWAT teams internationally, U.S. Navy Seals, and U.S. Army Special Forces while Brzycki is recognized as a leader in the field of practical strength training and the author of several books on the topic.

The authors begin the book by pointing out the valuable benefits to physical fitness, many of which apply to all people not just those in law enforcement, such as quality of life, improved work performance, and injury prevention. Common training terminology is discussed and a brief overview of human anatomy follows. The chapter on flexibility includes an overview of safe stretching procedures as well as large photos of proper stretching form for each movement.

Chapters include an overview of exercise physiology, aerobic and anaerobic training and strength training. Safe training instruction, applications of various training principles, and charts that can be used to measure and track one's fitness are included. Like the flexibility chapter, each strength training movement discussed is illustrated in clear, large photographs. Free-weight, machine, and manual resistance exercises are all explained in detail.

Further information is given on designing training programs that fit each individual and emphasize the importance of varying the workouts. Metabolic, power, rehabilitative, skill and nutritional training are each given detailed chapters and like the early portions of the book are excellent resources for anyone seeking sound training information.

The chapter on weight management explains in easy-to-understand concepts the path to gaining or losing weight safely. In this era of "super-diet" scams where entire departments of bookstores are devoted to the subject, Brzycki and Meyers do justice to body weight management in only seven pages.

The book concludes with a chapter devoted to common training questions along with answers based on sound research and science as well as an appendix section, which includes reproducible forms and charts. These forms include training logs and exercise lists.

While this book is aimed at law enforcement personnel and what practical training can do for them personally and their careers, it is important to note that all readers can use this book. The wide world of fitness is one full of misinformation and hype. SWAT Fitness helps to bring some reliable, practical and safe information to those who seek it.

- Samuel Knopik
Head Football Coach
Pembroke Hill School
Kansas City, Missouri

To order "SWAT Fitness" please visit www.operationaltactics.org.

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