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Old 01-07-2013, 01:12 PM
Evil Economist Evil Economist is offline
Join Date: Jan 2009
Posts: 4,074
I used to read a magazine called "Iron Mind"* that covered a bunch of different strength sports. I ended my subscription after reading an article in which an entirely serious author wrote about how he noticed that shortly after he started hearing birds singing in the morning, plants started to grow. His conclusion was that birdsong made plants grow. If I remember correctly, he then concluded that it was the vibrations in the birdsong that made the plants grow, therefore vibrations were good for strength, therefore you could make your muscles grow through being exposed to certain types of vibrations, i.e. birdsong. It was my favorite article of all time, just for the way the guy started out so absurdly wrong and just kept digging.

I think it was the same author who noticed that his athletes who walked with their toes pointed out were worse athletes that those who walked with their toes pointing forward. The guy was apparently a high school strength coach, because if I remember correctly he had his players practice walking with their toes pointed forward, in order that they could become better athletes. (The more likely chain of causation is that excess fat causes you to walk with your feet pointing outward, which makes you slower on the field. Practing walking with your toes pointing forward won't help you at all.)

I used to read old weight training books. In one of them the author proudly recalled how his secretary had asked him for advice on how to lose weight. This guy went around studying all the secretaries and noticed that the thin ones sat more upright compared to the fat ones. He then recommended to his secretary that she sit more upright, and if she did this she would lose weight. What I loved most about that whole story was that the guy was so proud of his analysis and conclusion that he made it an entire chapter of his book, and that no one in the entire publishing chain from the writer to the editor to the proofreader to the librarian who put the book on the shelves noticed any problems with any of it.

*Edit: the magazine was called Milo.

Last edited by Evil Economist; 01-07-2013 at 01:17 PM.