Reproduction of this course courtesy of MR. GORDON J. ANDERSON


You'll need this chart for this lesson.

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Earl E. Liederman

America's Leading Director of Physical Education

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Tenth Week

Perhaps you would like to know the names of the different muscles you are exercising, and how they are used, so I will explain briefly about the most important ones. You cannot know too much about your own body, and the time is bound to come when you will be called upon to exhibit your muscles and then it will be nice to know the names and how to show them to advantage. If you will study the enclosed chart it will help you greatly in understanding them.

I will start from the neck and name them downward to the feet. The first and most noticeable muscle of the neck is the STERNO CLEIDO MASTOID (pronounced just the way it is spelled) and this muscle rotates the head. It gives the neck a squarer appearance when properly developed and runs from behind the ear to the STERNUM or BREAST-BONE. If you turn your head to one side you can see and feel it standing out. (#1 on chart)

As I told you earlier in your course, a splendidly developed neck is something to be proud of, for it sets off your appearance greatly. So many people have nice shoulders, arms and back, but they sadly neglect the neck, so you should profit by what I tell you.

As a class of athletes, wrestlers have the finest necks, though some I admit are overdeveloped. I have met wrestlers whose necks measured over 22". Of course, they had very large heads. If you have a large face and head you can stand at least a 17" to 18" neck while, on the other hand if your face and head are small, a 16" neck will set you off just as well as far as appearance is concerned.

The muscle, that gives a slant to the shoulder, is called the TRAPEZIUS and this muscle raises the shoulders when you shrug them. It is also attached to the spinal column and also pulls the SCAPULAR or shoulder blade backwards. If you bring your shoulders as far backwards as possible this muscle will form two big lumps in the center of the upper back, just below the neck. This muscle, when properly developed will broaden the neck from the back, for one of its attachments runs into the head (#2 on chart). Over-development of this muscle may have a tendency to make you slightly round shouldered when dressed and it will form small "hills" on each side of your neck to your shoulders. However, without this muscle properly developed, the neck would look very weak from the rear, and the shoulders and upper back would not be strong.

The chest muscles are called the PECTORALS, and these muscles bring the arms across the chest. The more you develop the pectoral muscles the thicker and higher chest you will have (#4 on chart, front view). I have always admired thick, pectoral muscles. I remember before I had muscles I used to envy the beautiful chest muscles on statues in Art Museums and also the mighty chests on wrestlers and strong men. That is why my pectorals are so thick. I wanted them more than anything else and I got them. Without them, the, chest would look exceedingly narrow, so keep on with the push-up exercise and you too will get them the way you want them.

The muscle that gives the slant to the body from the arm pits to the waist is called the LATISSIMUS DORSI meaning in Latin "the broadest of the back". This muscle can be developed to enormous proportions, and the larger you develop it, the larger girth of chest you will have, not to speak of a very broad back. Chinning the bar is an excellent exercise for this muscle, for any movement that brings the arms from over head downward will develop it (#5 on chart, front view and #8 on chart rear view). I have seen strong men with this muscle so developed that it was almost unbelievable. This muscle properly developed really makes the back broader than the shoulders when it is expanded.

The little muscles that look like ribs right under the chest muscles on each side of your torso, are called the SERRATUS MAGNUS meaning in Latin "great saw tooth". These muscles are very beautiful to look at when properly developed and are used in reaching upward (#6 front view.)

The muscles that cover your stomach are the EXTERNAL OBLIQUE ABDOMINIS and RECTUS ABDOMINIS and can be seen when you bend slightly over. They form ridges on each side in front of your abdomen. Knee bending with the trunk forward develops them. (#9 front view.) There are a great many interesting formations these abdominal movements can assume under proper control, for I have seen some interesting photographs of abdominal display, the most phenomenal being the isolation of separate muscles, which a great many of my pupils can do. I have never posed to show abdominal control, for it always causes a strained appearance in the photograph and I always liked relaxed, natural poses; but I have learned from experience that constant practice of abdominal control will give you a stomach that can digest anything. Try it yourself and see.

The muscle that covers the shoulder is called the DELTOID and is used in raising the arms sideways and upwards. This muscle gives the shoulders the broad appearance when roundly developed. (#3 on chart). If you want exceedingly broad shoulders pay strict attention to this muscle. A peculiar thing about this is simply that ½" more curve on each shoulder makes the shoulders appear several inches broader. With good deltoids you won’t need any padding or stiffening in the shoulders of your coats. You can always tell an athlete’s condition by his deltoids. When his deltoids are flat he is out of shape, for round deltoids denote perfect condition. Later in life, the first muscle to show signs of age is the deltoid for it loses its roundness, so keep your deltoids in shape.

The muscle in front of the arm is called the BICEP. This I am sure you are familiar with for it will develop by bending or flexing the arm (#7 front view). The biceps can be knotted up into a ball, but do not think that this muscle constitutes the whole size of the arm for it does not, for the muscle behind the arm gives the arm most of its girth. When I say my bicep measures 16 1/2" I mean the whole upper arm, when flexed.

The muscle behind the upper arm is the TRICEP which gives the arm its pushing and striking power. Any time you push, you work this muscle (#7 rear view). There is hardly a limit to the development of the triceps. The more you work them the better developed and larger they get. When you place your hands on your hips you can see the curve it makes in your arm. Some athletes develop the inner head more than the outer, but I have pupils whose outer head exceeds the inner in development. My triceps have the inner head developed more than the outer. When the inner head is correctly developed, the arm becomes flat when held relaxed against your sides, but when the outer head is more developed, the arm appears round in the same position. It is a matter of choice which kind of arm you desire. The push-up will give you a flat arm when relaxed, while pushing over-head will give you a round arm when relaxed at side. A round arm of course, never looks as large as a flat arm from a side view, but it looks larger from the front view.

The muscle in front of the thighs is called the QUADRICEPS EXTENSOR, which means "four headed" for there are four different muscles composing this group (see #16, 17, 18 and 19 front view). These muscles extend the thighs and are developed by the familiar deep knee bending. There is practically no limit to thigh development but it is hard work, much harder to do than upper body work. Nevertheless, don’t neglect it. Of course, some inherit heavy legs and naturally they have an advantage over those who inherit thin legs as far as bulk is concerned, but pleasant looking and strong legs can be earned by anyone who wants them. You must more than want them. You must crave them. Simply wishing will not give you the muscles, but if your whole mind, heart and soul crave phenomenal development, you will get it, for you naturally will work more diligently for it. The formation of the muscles differ however, in everyone. Some develop round thighs, others sort of "pointed in the middle thighs". Whatever nature intended you should have, be satisfied, but give them plenty of work.

The muscle behind the thigh is called the BICEP of the leg, and this muscle brings the leg backwards and flexes it. (#21, rear view).

The calf muscle is called the GASTROCNEMIUS, and forms all the meat behind the lower leg. You know you develop this muscle by rising up and down on your toes. (#22 front view, #24 rear view). It is quite hard to develop the calf of the leg if you do not inherit heavy legs, still it can be done, but not as well as if the legs were large and heavy. The exercise I gave you on a book will do the work as good as any for the back of the calf, but you should also do shin work for the front of the calf, as everything helps.

I have simply given you the names of the larger muscles, for I don’t think you will ever need the numerous names of the minor ones. If you should care to know them and their uses, I suggest you read some anatomy book. I advise you to learn these names for as I said, some day you may be called upon to show your muscles to your friends or audiences, and it will be to your advantage to be able to explain them or to know how to throw them out to their limit. You should learn to pose properly, for you will be surprised to learn how much better you can make yourself look if you assume the proper poses, whether it be for the camera or for the public. Posing is really hard, and as long as you are striving to reach your maximum development, you should know as much about your muscles and exercise as possible.

You see a great number of pictures of athletes who do not look very well built or who look awkward, but who in real life are really splendidly developed. The whole trouble lies in the knowledge of posing. If they assume the proper pose they will look twice as well.

This is your last lesson and I trust you will practice them all faithfully.

Wishing you the very best of success. I am
Your Friend,

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