26 MARCH 1892, Page 23

Natural Method of Physical Training. By Edwin Checkley. (G. P.

Putnam's Sons.)—" Making muscle and reducing flesh without dietary or apparatus," is the attractive promise which Mr. Checkley holds out on his title-page. How far it may be fulfilled is more than we can say, without the advantage of experience or observation ; but we do not hesitate to declare that the book has a very per- suasive air about it. The "natural training" is simply to call into use the powers and instruments which Nature has supplied ; to carry the body properly, to breathe properly, to use all the muscles, and not a bare majority, it may be a minority, of them. The chief sacrifice demanded, after the necessary perseverance, will be to discard harmful clothing, tight shoes, to begin with, for men, and tight shoes and corsets for women. Mr. Checkley is strong against corsets, not merely when tight-laced, but generally. One instance of what a man ought to do, and often cannot do, may be given. A man ought to be able to contract the abdomen at will. If he cannot, he is not in a sound condition, and the sooner he gets back to it, the better. Mr. Checkley's book is well worth reading.