The Skeptic’s Guide to Sports Science: Confronting Myths of the Health and Fitness Industry

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The Skeptic's Guide to Sports Science

The Skeptic’s Guide to Sports Science: Confronting Myths of the Health and Fitness Industry by Nicholas B. Tiller

The global health and fitness industry is worth an estimated $4 trillion. We spend $90 billion each year on health club memberships and $100 billion each year on dietary supplements. In such an industrial climate, lax regulations on the products we are sold (supplements, fad-diets, training programs, gadgets, and garments) result in marketing campaigns underpinned by strong claims and weak evidence. Moreover, our critical faculties are ill-suited to a culture characterized by fake news, social media, misinformation, and bad science. We have become walking, talking prey to 21st-Century Snake Oil salesmen.

In The Skeptic’s Guide to Sports Science, Nicholas B. Tiller confronts the claims behind the products and the evidence behind the claims. The author discusses what might be wrong with the sales pitch, the glossy magazine advert, and the celebrity endorsements that our heuristically-wired brains find so innately attractive. Tiller also explores the appeal of the one quick fix, the fallacious arguments that are a mainstay of product advertising, and the critical steps we must take in retraining our minds to navigate the pitfalls of the modern consumerist culture.

This informative and accessible volume pulls no punches in scrutinizing the plausibility of, and evidence for, the most popular sports products and practices on the market. Readers are encouraged to confront their conceptualizations of the industry and, by the book’s end, they will have acquired the skills necessary to independently judge the effectiveness of sports-related products. This treatise on the commercialization of science in sport and exercise is a must-read for exercisers, athletes, students, and practitioners who hope to retain their intellectual integrity in a lucrative health and fitness industry that is spiraling out-of-control.

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I found this an excellent resource. Dense with information but also quite easy to read. Great for avoiding the con man in health and fitness.

Table of contents for The Skeptic’s Guide to Sports Science: Confronting Myths of the Health and Fitness Industry:
Chapter 1: Snake Oil for the 21st-Century
Chapter 2: Sharpen Your Tools
Chapter 3: Logical Fallacies in Sports Science
Chapter 4: Show Me the Research
Chapter 5: Placebo Products and the Power of Perception
Chapter 6: Sports Nutrition
Chapter 7: Supplements and Drugs
Chapter 8: Training Programmes and Products
Chapter 9: Complementary and Alternative Therapies in Sport
Chapter 10: Check Your Ego

Although Tiller’s academic background is evident, this book is written in such a way that I believe all can understand. Laypeople, sports scientists, students and early-career academic and practitioners can all benefit from reading this book. Where possible, a balanced critique is given for almost every popular modern health and fitness trend and/or product. These are investigated in such a way that changes your view on the world, from supermarkets and sales strategies, to health authorities, supplements and “health-/performance-enhancing” practices. Most importantly, I feel, the book challenges you to challenge yourself. To encourage critical thinking is a key purpose of the book, and the author provides simple, effective methods to do so, be that reviewing an academic paper or understanding the efficacy of the latest sports technology or supplement. A must-read!

About the author of The Skeptic’s Guide to Sports Science: Confronting Myths of the Health and Fitness Industry:
Nicholas B. Tiller is a research fellow in Exercise Physiology, at Harbor-UCLA Medical Centre in Torrance, CA. He was born in London, England. He holds a master’s and doctoral degree in Human Applied Physiology, and is accredited with the British Association of Sport and Exercise Sciences (BASES). He writes about science, health, exercise, and critical thinking, and is an avid ultra-marathon runner.

Book Details:
Title: The Skeptic’s Guide to Sports Science: Confronting Myths of the Health and Fitness Industry
Author: Nicholas B. Tiller
Publisher: ‎Routledge
Published: April 17, 2020
Language: ‎ English
Format: Paperback
Pages: 22
ISBN-10: 1138333131
ISBN-13: ‎978-1138333130

Tiller’s information is accurate and supported by references, and his treatise on critical thinking is brilliant.

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The Skeptic's Guide to Sports ScienceAn Illustrated Book of Bad ArgumentsThe Critical Thinker's DictionaryLogically FallaciousNonsense Red Herrings Straw Men and Sacred Cows
The Skeptic’s Guide to Sports Science: Confronting Myths of the Health and Fitness IndustryAn Illustrated Book of Bad ArgumentsThe Critical Thinker's Dictionary: Biases, Fallacies, and Illusions and What You Can Do About ThemLogically Fallacious: The Ultimate Collection of Over 300 Logical FallaciesNonsense: Red Herrings, Straw Men and Sacred Cows: How We Abuse Logic in Our Everyday Language
Critical Thinking For Dummies
Critical Thinking Skills For Dummies

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Page last updated: Aug 31, 2021 @ 2:53 am

 
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