Mind and Body Metamorphosis: Conditioning Techniques to Transform Your Life: Conditioning Techniques for Personal Transformation


mind and bodyBook Review From Amazon.com

There is so much rubbish out there about either fitness or internal kung fu that one ends up eclectically picking bits and pieces from here and there and ignoring most of the rest. Matthew Mills did a great and convincing job bringing much stuff together. The book looked at traditional health exercises common in the Asian martial arts with the eyes of an academic with a background in physiology and medicine. He writes for those who believe in the Dan Tien, but explains his exercises equally convincing to skeptics who don't buy into this kind of thing. It is refreshing to read that kind of respect for both traditionalists and skeptics. The book is the best of both worlds. He keeps what survives critical examination, but discards the rest and adds what is useful and helpful from modern, academic approaches to health. As a result the book has Qi-gong style exercises as well as simple steps for mental well being developed in cognitive and behavioural therapy.
This is probably not the book you need if you are after bulging muscles and triathlons, but if you want overall fitness, strength, endurance and mental stability achievable in front of your bathroom mirror, this is a well researched no-nonsense book.


Matt did his PhD with us at University College London looking at the problems of muscle wasting in the elderly. After that he spent some time at the University of Birmingham where he developed a number of ideas for reducing stress and encouraging people to take up exercise. One of his most important ideas was the realisation that the major component of stress is not being in control. We can be very busy but if we are achieving our goals then the work is satisfying and we are not stressed. On the other hand, if we are achieving nothing, are frustrated and no longer in control of events then we become stressed. Much of this philosophy, mixed in with a flavour of the Far East, permeates Matt's new book, Mind and Body Metamorphosis. In a world where we have so little control over events and our environment, gaining control over our own bodies is a very attractive approach to reducing stress. The book is easy to read and it is clear from the start that anyone can have a go. No special equipment is required and the techniques can be applied in any location. Starting with breath control and progressing through improved aerobic fitness and later developing their muscular strength, readers will soon be able to see and feel the changes and become not only fitter but also stress free.

Professor David Jones and Dr Joan Round
School of Sport and Exercise Sciences; University of Birmingham