1. Weak persons and those suffering from malignant diseases, such as cancer, tuberculosis, heart trouble, asthma, or from displacements and ruptures, or who are liable to apoplectic seizures, etc., should not take these or any other vigorous exercises except under the supervision of a competent physician.
  2. At least twice a day all parts of the respiratory apparatus should be thoroughly exercised (see Chapter Twenty-Eight on Breathing Exercises). Deep breathing should accompany every corrective movement, whether it be a special breathing exercise or not.
  3. Begin your exercises each day with light movements and change gradually to more vigorous ones, then reverse the process, ending with light, relaxing movements.
  4. When beginning to take systematic exercise, do not make the separate movements too vigorous or continue them too long. If any of them cause pain or considerable strain, omit them until the body becomes stronger and more flexible. The muscular soreness often resulting from exercise at the beginning is, as a rule, of little consequence and disappears before long. The different movements should be practiced in spite of it, because that is the only way to relieve and overcome this condition.
  5. Stop when you begin to feel tired. Never overdo; you should feel refreshed and relaxed after exercising, not tired and shaky.
  6. Do not take vigorous exercise of any kind within an hour and a half after eating, nor immediately before meals. It is a good plan to rest and relax thoroughly for about fifteen minutes before sitting down to the table.
  7. Whenever practicable, exercise out of doors. If indoors, perform the movements near an open window or where there is a current of fresh air.
  8. Exercise undressed, if possible, or in a regular gymnasium suit that gives free play to all the muscles. If dressed, loosen all tight clothing. Ladies should wear their garments suspended from the shoulders by means of shoulder braces, or so-called reform waists, the skirts being fastened to these.
  9. Always relax physically and mentally before taking exercise.
  10. Apparatus is not necessary to produce results. However, dumbbells, wands or Indian clubs may be used, but they should not be too heavy. One-pound dumbbells are sufficiently heavy in most cases. The exercises described here are intended for muscular control, flexibility, improvement of the circulation and increased activity of the vital functions rather than for mere animal strength.

In the following paragraphs we offer a selection of corrective movements, graduated from the more simple to those requiring considerable agility and effort.

In practicing these exercises, it is best to alternate them, that is, to select, say, six or seven movements, suited to individual conditions with a view to secure all-around general development and special practice for those parts and organs of the body that need extra attention. The time at your disposal will also have to be considered.

Practice these exercises daily for a week. For the following week select six different exercises, then six more for the third week, and so on, supplementing the list here given as may be required by your particular needs. Then start over again in a similar manner.

This is better than doing the same stunts every day. It promotes all-around development of the body and keeps the interest from flagging.