The Nautilus Bulletins

The Nautilus Bulletins are high intensity training classics by Arthur Jones, inventor of the Nautilus exercise machines, which explain the principles of his philosophy of hard, brief and infrequent training.

The Nautilus Bulletins 1 and 2 e-books are free for personal use but may not be republished or distributed on another web site or as part of any commercial product without my prior written permission.

They require the free Adobe Acrobat reader to view. Click here to download the free Acrobat reader.

Nautilus Training Principles: Bulletin No. 1

Nautilus Training Principles: Bulletin No. 1

Nautilus Training Principles: Bulletin No. 2

Nautilus Training Principles: Bulletin No. 2

A Three-Volume set containing Nautilus Training Principles: Bulletins No. 1, 2 and 3 is also available for purchase in the High Intensity Training Store. These high intensity training classics by Nautilus inventor Arthur Jones cover every aspect of training from the specifics of exercise performance to the general principles of program design. Whether you’re a bodybuilder, athlete, or just want to lose fat or improve your general health and fitness, the information you need is covered here.

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12 Responses to The Nautilus Bulletins

  1. Matt January 7, 2011 at 9:00 am #

    Hi Drew. Thanks for posting these. They will make a very interesting read.

    Whilst flicking through though, I didn’t notice one large quote at the end of chapter sixteen which stated that “every repetition of nearly every exercise should be performed as fast as possible”

    I currently subscribe to the four second each range of motion theory.

    In your opinion, which you do feel is the correct way to go?

    • Drew Baye January 7, 2011 at 12:09 pm #


      It is important to consider the quote in context. The full quote reads, “Every repetition of every set of most exercises should be performed as fast as possible – consistent with proper form and safety considerations.” The second part (emphasis mine) is often overlooked.

      In chapter 37 of Bulletin No. 2 Arthur explains this, saying, “…while you could move quite fast during the first repetitions without cheating, restrict your actual speed of movement to a speed well below what you could do—until at least the fourth repetition. In effect, the first three or four repetitions will move slower than necessary—but after the fourth repetition, move the weight as fast as possible without cheating; which movement will be, in fact, quite slow.”

      Also, in chapter 26 Arthur says, “In general, speed of movement should always be as great as possible; but in practice, this does not mean that actual movement will be very fast—because, if resistance is as high as it should be, then maximum-possible speed of movement may in fact be quite slow.”

      Throughout the Bulletins and Arthur’s other writings he makes many similar statements, which became more conservative over the years. In The Future of Exercise: 1997 and Beyond, he wrote, “If in doubt about proper speed of movement, then move slower; it is probably impossible to move too slow during exercise, but easily possible to move too fast . . .”

      I agree with this last statement most. While it is not necessary to move extremely slowly during exercise, you should move at least slowly enough to be able to do three things:

      1. Maintain proper body positioning and alignment
      2. Reverse direction smoothly between lifting and lowering with no bouncing, yanking, jerking or heaving at the weight
      3. Focus on intensely contracting the target muscles throughout the exercise

      If you are able to do this, you’re moving slowly enough.

  2. Vanner January 7, 2011 at 5:23 pm #

    These volumes actually convinced me to tweak my workout of the week.

    1. I switch to training legs first rather than last.

    In my last couple workouts, I was noticing complete exhaustion and nausea when training legs last. Then I noticed, by training legs first I didn’t feel like I was going to wretch. And I still made gains on my other movements.

    Maybe the legs take up so much of the bodies resources that they need to be trained first? I’m not sure.

    2. I did a couple heavy compound lifts (not to failure) the next day.

    Just enough to pump blood into the muscles. This seem to reduce my DOMS significantly. Again, I don’t know why this worked.

    • Drew Baye January 7, 2011 at 8:21 pm #


      Although there are exceptions (see my article on dynamic exercise order as well as Doug McGuff’s comments on leg press and exercise induced headache in Body by Science) it is usually a good idea to perform your exercises in order from largest to smallest muscle groups so the most demanding exercises are done earlier in the routine when you have the most energy.

      I don’t know why repeating an exercise the next day eliminates the soreness, but it does. This is something beginners should keep in mind when starting to learn a new exercise.

  3. David Chunn January 8, 2011 at 5:19 am #

    HIT deadlifts leave me with the same feeling I used to get from running 10 fifty yard sprints when I played football in HS: heaving on the ground and nauseous. Last time I nearly threw up. I always do them first or second in the workout and I have to give myself an extra minute of rest before the next exercise (4-5 minutes). I still make good progress on all the other exercises. I’m sure without the deadlifts I’d make more, but the deadlifts are clearly working me the hardest. I really can’t imagine doing them last. I don’t think I’d have the heart.

    I do taijiquan every day except workout day and that eliminates most of my soreness, especially in my legs. But I have found a few reps of power clean and press with very light weights can help as well since it quickly hits just about every muscle.

  4. Wood January 9, 2011 at 1:32 pm #

    Drew, is the muslce soreness indicator of a good workout, or muscle hypertrophy? Or just a simple effect of a hard workout?

    • Drew Baye January 9, 2011 at 2:35 pm #


      Muscle soreness is highly subjective and not a reliable indicator of workout or exercise effectiveness or recovery. Beginners often experience a lot of delayed onset muscle soreness when learning new exercises, but after a few months are able to perform the same exercises far more intensely using much heavier weights and experience little soreness at all.

  5. Pavel/Czech Republic January 11, 2011 at 3:04 pm #

    Hi Drew, thank you very much for this great insight into the newsletter.

  6. Steven Turner January 23, 2011 at 6:17 pm #

    Hi Drew,

    I recieved the book and it is a great read the book makes understanding what Arthur had to say on many topics a lot easier to understand.

    I came across a book called “The Fit Body Building Endurance” written in 1987 I could write many quotes from the book “The best aerobic exercises are brisk walking, distance running, swimming, cycling, aerobices, cross country skiing, rowing skipping”. Is there an exact measurement of fitness – Vo2 Max”..”the average Vo2 max of champion distance runners was higher than that of every other group, including world class skiers and competitve rowers, cyclists and swimmers…and the Vo2 max test was done on a treadmill. “Most common runners’ syndromes on the right are overuse, or stress injuries. Because they generally do not result in acute sudden pain stress injuries can be insidous. And one of the ways of overcoming running injuries “an expensive pair of running shoes and then you need a special pair for your aerobics class and your cross training activities and than an expensive bike and canoe.

    The Fit Body book was written in 1987 when I read this book I can now understand why Arthur Jones became so frustrated and angry with the “so-called experts’ of the time. When you have a think about what Arthur Jones was saying was to make exercise, safe, efficient and effective as possible compared to other physical activities that were known to be high risk.

    Last quote from the book and this was 1987…”According to one survey, about half a sample population of runners reported a running injury in the previous year that was serious enough to make them reduce training, take medication or see a doctor.

    I can now appreciate what Arthur Jones warned us against. Some people have listened but I think a lot have not.


  7. Oli February 17, 2011 at 6:26 pm #

    Hey Drew,
    Did Arthur write Bulletin No. 3 along with the other two or did it come later?

    • Drew Baye February 26, 2011 at 11:39 am #


      The first two Bulletins were written in 1970 and 1971, while Bulletin No. 3 was not written until 1973.

  8. Steven.turner March 3, 2011 at 5:21 pm #

    Hi Drew,

    In the chapters “The Next Step” Arthur talks a lot about “Power Production” and how to complete a set basically a 10 rep set would be the first four or five reps hold back the speed and the last few reps as fast as possible. Over the last few weeks I have been doing my sets as Arthur suggests or “tells you” I have found that this has added to the intensity of my workouts.

    Most of the HIT people of today suggest doing each and every rep the same – basically all reps are completed at the same speed regardless of the rep range.

    Could you give us a comment on your thoughts on power production, rep speed/sets and Arthurs comments on power production.

    I have found doing sets the way Arthur suggested as brutal.

    Also, Arthur suggest in anopther extract on multiple sets of 10-8-6 when decreasing the reps increase the weight – I have also found this method to be actually brutal and I have tried in on the 3×3 metabolic conditioning exercise that you have suggested. Basically I have increased the weight when decreasing the reps.

    The Nautalis training Principles are a great read and for them to be written in 1970, 1971 and 1973. That is amazing I will say that for Arthur Jones to write the bulletins at that time he is a genius.


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