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Bob Anderson Biography

Here is the “About the Authors” section from Stretching:

Bob Anderson was born in 1945 in Fullerton, California and is a graduate of California State University at Long Beach, with a lifetime teaching credential in physical education. He has taught stretching to the Denver Broncos, the New York Jets, the California Angels, the Los Angeles Dodgers and the Los Angeles Lakers; set up stretching programs for the football teams at Southern Methodist University, University of California at Berkeley, Washington State University and the University of Nebraska; has taught emotionally and physically handicapped children; worked with executives at the North American Rockwell Space Division; taught professional rodeo riders, as well as swimmers, cyclists, weight lifters, tennis, racquetball, handball, and volleyball players. He has also worked with members of the U.S. Olympic Ski and Figure Skating teams, and for the last seven years has taught stretching at the Pikes Peak High Altitude Running Camp in Colorado.

In 1968, at the age of 23, Bob began a personal physical fitness program, since he felt he was overweight and out of shape. He changed his diet, started eating less, and began running and cycling. His weight went from 190 to 135 pounds over a period of time, and he soon was in much better physical condition. One day, while in a conditioning class in college, he discovered he could not reach much past his knees in a straight legged sitting position. After discovering how tight he was, Bob started stretching. In several months he became much more limber; he found that stretching made running, cycling and other activities easier and more enjoyable and that it eliminated most of the muscular soreness that usually accompanies strenuous physical exertion.

After several years of exercising and stretching with Jean and a small group of friends, Bob gradually developed a method of stretching that could be taught to anyone. Soon, he was teaching his technique to others. He began working with professional teams, then college teams, other amateur athletes, and with a variety of people at sports medicine clinics, racquetball clubs, athletic clubs and running stores throughout the country.

Bob and Jean first published their book Stretching in 1975 and in four years sold over 35,000 copies by mail. Articles on their stretching techniques have appeared in The Runner, Runner’s World, Powder: The Skier’s Magazine, Swim-Swim, Down River, Esquire, Playboy, Organic Gardening, House and Garden, Glamour, and Vogue. Bob’s public appearances created such a demand for information on stretching (8,000 letters received after his first appearance on “The Today Show”) that in 1979–80 this revised version of the book was published. Bob has recently toured Japan and Germany, conducting stretching workshops. Stretching has been translated into 19 foreign languages, and has sold over 3 million copies. A second major revision was published in July 2000, with over 1000 new drawings by Jean Anderson.

Jean Anderson was born in 1945 in Long Beach, California and has a B.A. in art from California State University at Long Beach. She began running and cycling with Bob in 1970. She developed a system of drawing the various stretch positions as she and Bob worked on the different stretches through the years. Jean was the typesetter, illustrator and editor of the first edition of Stretching. She also designs, hand-dyes and knits multi-colored wool hats. Bob and Jean live with their two daughters in Palmer Lake, Colorado.


Excerpted from Stretching , ©1980 by Robert A. And Jean E. Anderson. Shelter Publications, Inc., Bolinas, Calif. Distributed in bookstores by Publishers Group West