Authors and readers have experienced unprecedented changes to the ‘book’ medium over the last ten years. I have decided to make changes to this, and future editions, of Stretching & Flexibility via a new medium, Lightning Source, an international Print on Demand, or “POD” service. As well as being able to print for individual customers on their own continents, Lightning Source is a ‘total fulfilment’ system; this means that once ordered, LS prints and posts the book to the customer—and at local postage rates. This aspect alone is an immense blessing for us, because shipping a book from Australia to the US, for example, is almost as expensive as the book itself.

To supplement the written form of the work, I have decided to use the new Vimeo on Demand (“VOD”; http://vimeo.com/kitlaughlin/vod_pages) inexpensive pay download service to present those aspects of exercises that are best understood via HD video with decent sound; we make all programs ourselves, on location; they are available in HD and standard definition for different devices and to cater to local bandwidths, and our programs are not copy protected, either.

The third strand to a more effective learning experience is the creation of our Stretch Therapy Community Forums (http://www.KitLaughlin.com/forums): with over a thousand threads presently, a huge amount of directly relevant material will be found there by browsing or searching, and, in addition, a user can ask a question, and get help or comments from any of the many members there immediately. All together, I feel that these three approaches provide an effective interactive learning system that no book or video in isolation can begin to approach.

The second edition of Stretching & Flexibility has two major alterations to the original (1999) edition: I have revised the hip flexor and hamstring stretches, because although the original ones work fine, the new ones are just so much better. As well, you will find 18 new exercises, including critical rotator cuff movements, in the Stretching & Flexibility DVD Update, now also available from Vimeo on Demand.

For an author interested in keeping his readers up to date with his material, there is another deep problem with the original Gutenberg Press model: it is simply too slow, because this model requires large numbers of books to be printed to be cost effective—and these books must be stored somewhere. In addition to the information being a year or more out of date (simply because of the large number of steps involved: writing, rewriting, editing, proofing, printing, shipping to distribution points, shipping to point of sale, etc.), the publishing model suffers from the same problems as medieval libraries: stored books are prone to fire, inundation, and rodents. We are now able to move beyond these limits for the first time.

Kit Laughlin, Melbourne, 2014