|Arthur Jones RIP|
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Arthur Jones, the inventor of Nautilus exercise equipment, died Tuesday. He was 80.
Jones had been ill for several days but was kept at home, per his wishes, said his son, William Edgar Jones. He died of natural causes, according to his son, who was by his father's side when he passed, along with a longtime friend and a nurse.
"He should be remembered as a man of extreme intelligence, extreme independence and probably one of the most unrecognized and unawarded inventors that ever existed," William Edgar Jones told The Associated Press.
His father was particularly proud of his latest invention — exercise machines used for rehabilitation purposes by people with spinal cord injuries and back pain, Jones said.
Nautilus came along in 1970 and introduced machines that offered a more-targeted approach to strength training, changing the idea of the workout.
The machines became ubiquitous — former President Ronald Reagan was even said to use Nautilus equipment in the White House when he was rehabilitating from his gunshot wound.
"Arthur Jones was the founder of modern-day exercise," Greg Webb, a Nautilus Inc. vice president of product development, said in a statement. "He had an incredible ability to create the interface between man and machine by incorporating biomechanics into exercise equipment."
The success of the machines also made Jones wealthy. He bought property in Ocala and started what has become the exclusive "fly-in" community of Jumbolair Aviation Estates, now most famously the home of John Travolta.
Besides his son, Arthur Jones is survived by two daughters.
OCALA - Arthur A. Jones, inventor of the Nautilus exercise equipment and founder of the Jumbolair estate in Anthony, died at about 4:40 a.m. today at his Ocala home.
Jones was 80. His son, William, said he died of natural causes.
Jones was born in Arkansas and grew up in Oklahoma, according to a news release from MedX Corp., a fitness company he founded. He was a pilot, animal importer and filmmaker.
In 1970, he introduced Nautilus equipment, "the first of its kind marketed to utilize the principle of variable resistance to develop muscles and build strength," according to MedX.
In the mid-1980s at Jumbolair, he would fly in 63 baby elephants from Zimbabwe using a Boeing 707, keep a gorilla and house many alligators, crocodiles and rattlesnakes.
The Nautilus invention made Jones a wealthy man. He sold the company in 1986 and founded MedX - which focused on spinal rehabilitation - the next year. He sold MedX in 1996.
Terri Jones-Thayer - now co-owner of Jumbolair Aviation Estates with her husband, Jeremy - credited her own business and personal accomplishments to Jones, whom she married at 18. They remained married until Jones-Thayer was 27.
Although they divorced in the 1980s, Jones-Thayer remained close to her ex-husband, she said.
Flying lessons became life lessons, she said. "He taught me to fly, and every time I'd want to quit and give up, he was always behind me, saying, 'Don't quit, you can do this.' I'm so glad he believed in me, even when I didn't."
Jones was a natural gambler in business, she said. "He took risks. He would throw it all on the table. He always told me if you've got a dream go out there and do it."
Despite the millions he earned from the Nautilus and MedX companies he founded, "Money never meant anything to him," Jones-Thayer said. "He said money was a tool to make dreams come true. I think he accomplished all his dreams. "
�I hope that Arthur Jones' contributions in the fields of fitness, sports medicine, exercise physiology and orthopedic rehabilitation will be recognized and appreciated," said MedX executive Jim Flanagan, who worked with Jones from 1971 to 1996.
No one person had greater impact on fitness training than Arthur Jones. He challenged and changed the attitudes of millions of people throughout the world. Beginning, in the 1970’s with the invention of Nautilus Exercise Machines. Even his critics grudgingly give him credit for sparking a renaissance in the design of exercise equipment and exercise concepts.
Before, the invention of Nautilus equipment, the standard form of progressive resistance training was the barbell. Barbells remain the most popular form of exercise throughout the world. Primarily because of its low cost, the great variety of exercises it adapts to, and its durability. It has enjoyed widespread popularity for more than a hundred years.
Arthur Jones has often stated that Nautilus equipment is "nothing more than an improved barbell” An understatement, if I ever heard one. Comparing a barbell to Nautilus equipment is like comparing an abacus to a computer.
Credited by many as being a mechanical genius, Jones's quest to improve his personal fitness levels led to his analyzing the shortcomings of barbell training. "
Self-evident truth" gleaned from years of exercising with barbells led him to believe at least one major flaw existed with barbell training. He believes barbells do not supply the basic requirement for exercise, resistance, throughout a full-range-of motion.
Because of this fact, many exercises performed with a barbell are virtually wasted motion, in that barbells exercise a muscle only during some of the movement rather than through the complete movement.
Even if resistance is supplied in a full range of the movement, because the resistance does not vary in relationship to the varying strength of the contracting muscle tissue.
It was evident to Arthur Jones that "if you are working a muscle through only part of the movement, you are not working it during other parts of the movement”
Arthur Jones set about designing a machine that would "supply resistance, throughout a complete range of motion. “ A victory achieved in 1948 when he designed a prototype of the first Nautilus machines.
A curl machine that exercised the biceps of the upper arm was installed in the Y.M.C.A in Tulsa, Oklahoma Other interests then caused Mr. Jones to concentrate his energies elsewhere.
For two decades he pursued his interest in flying and capturing and exporting wild animals from areas of Mexico and Africa.
An article in the April 21, 1975, issue of Sports Illustrated magazine summed up his exploits: "Behind his disguise as Mr. Middle Age, Jones is an adventurer, airplane pilot, one time mercenary, movie maker, and inventor.
He has been bitten by (1) rattlesnakes, (2) lions, (3) men and other dangerous critters. He has married four times, been near death even more often and figures that there is hardly a country he has not visited-at least on a bombing run. "
Legend has it that Arthur Jones was marking time in Lake Helen, Florida, awaiting word on some equipment and belongings that were confiscated (Jones called it theft) by the government of Rhodesia because of a difference of opinion about his actions while he was there.
While trying to reclaim his roughly $ 2 million worth of airplanes, a helicopter, and motion picture equipment via "proper" channels he began to tinker with other prototypes.
The time was right; there were too many hours for a curious mind to lay idle. Self-imposed stress is a way of life for Arthur Jones. Prototype after prototype began to pile up, as one improvement after another upgraded the basic concept.
Working with friends and cronies, using each other as guinea pigs, they made an assault on building larger muscles and improving strength.
Many who contributed time, effort, and talent during this period have never received full credit for their contribution. They are the unsung heroes forgotten by time.
Therefore, it is in many instances: the contributions of many become less known than those few who get the credit.
Finally, after many false starts, a finished product emerged. The Nautilus pullover--torso model. Dubbed "the Blue Monster.” First unveiled at a weight lifting meet in Los Angeles.
Bodybuilders and weightlifters are notoriously slow to adapt to change. Yet, the impact of the machine was immediate. Enough curious, rational people attended that first showing to sow the seeds for a soon-to-be cult of Nautilus converts.
Among the first intellectual bodybuilders to grasp the significance of this new tool, was Ellington Darden. A young, blond, good-natured bodybuilder, known for his broad shoulders and for his exceptional chest expansion.
Many of you know him as Dr. Ellington Darden, author of some 45 books and former Director of Research for Nautilus/Sports Medical Industries. Dr. Darden refined and redirected the basic fitness concepts of Arthur Jones and made them acceptable to the public.
As a handful of rational-thinking individuals began to ally them with Arthur Jones and his invention, critics sprang to the attack. Bodybuilders, the most gullible of exercise fanatics, were slow to adapt Nautilus equipment or exercise concepts to their training regimen.
They were methodically brainwashed by publishers of "muscle mags” to avoid any use of this new equipment.
Muscle & Fitness Magazine publisher, Joe Weider, began a series of articles supposedly authored by the "top" bodybuilders of that time. In these articles, the “stars" rapped with Mr. Weider. Each one explained his view of Nautilus.
Vince Gironda, the iron guru, was quoted: “The basic technical concept is erroneous; ...it is far too costly for what little it can do; and. . . Its appearance alone turns many persons away-frightens and confuses them."
Obviously, Mr. Gironda felt that the bodybuilders of that time were a group of intellectual and emotional wimps, and could be frightened and confused by looking at a machine.
Luckily, the intellectual level of the 1980's bodybuilder has improved, and they can "comprehend" the value of Nautilus.
Frank Zane supposedly said, "These Nautilus machines are mainly a gimmick. I actually dislocated my right shoulder." Mr. Zane evidently changed his mind and is shown using Nautilus equipment in his present training, it is alleged that he has purchased several machines for his in-home use.
Ken Waller, a Mr. Olympia competitor: "I lost about three-quarters of an inch from my arms!" Roger Callard said: "Everyone I know who used these machines extensively became smooth” Present day bodybuilders know that becoming "smooth" generally reflects excess eating in proportion to energy expenditure.
Arnold Schwarzenegger, everybody's Mr. Olympia and star of the movie,
The Terminator (and others), and presently the Governor of California, did his best to discredit Nautilus. He said: "I don't feel that the Nautilus machines even come close to training with the standard barbell, dumbbells and pulley equipment It is my honest opinion there is no comparison at all."
It is important to note that Mr. Schwarzenegger, in a letter printed in the February 1971, issue of Iron Man magazine quotes him as saying: "Mr. Jones just read me your letter which you wrote to him complaining about the facts he published regarding his new machines and training methods, and I laughed about your complaints because they don't make sense.”
“That’s the best advice I can give you is: visit Mr. Jones and try his machines yourself. Because that's the way I did it I gained four pounds and increased my arm size in the first three days of training on the new equipment, and I am making immediate arrangements with Mr. Jones to obtain several of his machines for my use in California.
If this is not my true opinion, then I will give up all of the titles I have won in the past I really believe that the new machines are fantastic. Otherwise, I would not write this.”
The letter was signed: Arnold Schwarzenegger, five times Mr. Universe, Mr. World Mr. Olympia Check it out yourself in the issue of Iron Man Magazine mentioned above.
During the early 1970's, many of the country's best-built men journeyed to DeLand Florida, to investigate Nautilus equipment. Most, unfortunately, did not comprehend either the machines or the exercise concepts.
Those concepts were a radical departure from the standard exercise programs of that time.
At the time, almost everyone connected with progressive exercise was training for several hours per day and at least three days per week. Arthur Jones was recommending less than two hours PER WEEK.
He defined many of the common problems shared by trainees in his classic books: Nautilus Training Principles, Bulletin #1 and Bulletin #2.
After logically defining the problems, he went one-step beyond; he offered sophisticated training methods, which he claimed would benefit everyone.
Nautilus Bulletin # 1, Chapter 2, "Basic Physics of Conventional Exercise Methods" clearly explained the fundamental problem encountered in using conventional barbells: “Almost all conventional exercises are based upon resistance provided by gravity.
Such resistance is unidirectional This limitation in direction of resistance is probably the greatest limiting factor affecting most exercises since it thus becomes impossible to involve more than a small percentage of the total number of fibers contained in a particular muscular structure."
He continued: "While the resistance is provided in only one direction, the involved body parts are rotating; in effect, you are trying to oppose a rotational form of movement with a reciprocal form of resistance, while proceeding in a straight line." It was that one basic fact that led to the invention and design of Nautilus. "Function dictates design" was a basic precept of the inventor's goals.
Countless design hours led to major changes in the shape of the new machines and their "heart," the Nautilus cam. The Nautilus cam provides the variable rotational resistance, improving muscle involvement during exercise.
Some older prototypes of the pullover machines required several "helpers" to get the trainee in and out of the machine. The cam configuration was such that it measured several feet in diameter.
Now, the cams are now only several inches in diameter and the machines are adaptable to any body size. Many improvements took place since the first public appearance of Nautilus machines at the show in Los Angeles.
Original cams took a form that resembled the inner chamber of a nautilus seashell. Thus, the name Nautilus, used for the name of the equipment. Now, the cams are manufactured of aluminum.
The original cams became an identifying trademark. Rings and necklaces were custom designed and worn by many Nautilus pioneers.
Eager to test the validity of his inventions and exercise concepts, Mr. Jones set up a group of machines in an old Quonset hut on the DeLand High School campus. There, working with scores of fitness pioneers, continuous research reshaped the machines and the exercise concepts.
Everyone was welcome to participate in these test projects. It seemed that there was always an eager disciple around to put a subject through the program, of what was eventually termed, high-intensity exercise.
Bodybuilder Mike Mentzer, a Jones convert, pioneered a version of high intensity he termed “Heavy Duty.” Those early workouts are accurately described as, brutal.
Strongmen came from throughout the country to test the machines and question the sanity of Guru Jones. Because the workout and training pace were 180 percent out-of-phase with other training concepts, many which tried them, became nauseous.
So intense were the workouts. Understandably, many refused to continue this method of training.
Misguided Nautilus instructors still get their kicks by attempting these outdated techniques. Who, in his right mind would or could, give 100 percent effort during every exercise.
Few had the mental discipline to reach down inside and drive themselves into physical obliteration.
One who possessed this ability was teenager Casey Viator. Arthur Jones personally trained Casey. Blessed with extraordinary genetics, the intense, one-on-one training produced one of the most powerful and muscular physiques of all time.
Casey was driven "beyond failure" by the prodding Jones who pulled no punches, and spared no feelings.
A master of psychology, Jones would manipulate Casey during a workout in which squats with 500 pounds for 20 repetitions and barbell curls with 225 pounds reportedly became child's play. At a height of 5'8", Viator claimed measurements that were enormous.
His arms taped at 193/8", his chest at 50", waist 311/2", 28" thighs, and 18"calves. The mystique of Casey Viator played an important role in the early success of Nautilus. Often referred to by Arthur Jones as: "Our resident genetic freak,” Casey and Arthur eventually parted company.
Years later, Casey is revered as one of the greatest bodybuilders of all time.
Iron Man magazine published many articles by Arthur Jones in the 1970's. Arthur Jones productions became Nautilus Sports/Medical Industries. An important name change, it created a national image, needed to expand the interest in Nautilus equipment to larger markets such as colleges, hospitals, and for use in the corporate fitness area.
Articles and advertisements, first in Iron Man magazine and later in Athletic Journal, spread the Nautilus gospel. For many years, every issue contained articles, updates, franchise information, and letters of endorsement, controversial editorials, and the expected muckraking.
Meanwhile, at Nautilus Headquarters in Florida, several key men joined the Nautilus staff. Ed Farnham became general manager, and played a major role in creating and protecting the Nautilus image and his own for over a decade.
Ellington Darden began to publish books consolidating the Nautilus concepts, giving them) balance and substance. Except for Arthur Jones, Dr. Darden is the person that visitors to Nautilus Headquarters were most eager to meet. Dr. Darden led what many people (including me) would define as an idealistic lifestyle.
Living only a five-minute commute, by battered bicycle, to his office at Nautilus Headquarters, he was never far from his position at the right hand of Arthur Jones.
A world traveler, the image of him pedaling a rusty balloon-tired bike through the streets of Lake Helen always brings a smile to my face.
Jim Flanagan, the present general manager, replaced Ed Farnham, was with the company since its inception, until its sale in about 1986. An impressive giant of a man at 6'5" and extremely broad-shouldered his calm, deliberate, and courteous manner of handling clients won him respect throughout the country, and in foreign lands.
Unlike some of his contemporaries who remain in virtual isolation at Nautilus Headquarters, Big Jim has kept his finger on the pulse of the fitness business by crisscrossing the country, speaking at clinics and trade shows.
After the sale of the Nautilus Company, Jim became associated with the MedX Company. Arthur Jones founded this company after the sale of his Nautilus Company.
MedX equipment was the evolution of Nautilus equipment and initially focused on the medical industry. The equipment was a major breakthrough in the testing and rehabilitation of lumbar spine and cervical spine injuries. Eventually, other equipment was focused on the knee and other areas of the body.
Beginning in late 1989 and through the 1990’s, I was fortunate to become, the Regional Director, of Northern California for MedX West and helped pioneer advanced testing and rehabilitation exercise based in MedX technology and rehabilitative procedures.
Responsible only to Arthur Jones, Dan Baldwin wielded considerable power within the Nautilus organization. In charge of the manufacturing plant in Virginia, his keen eye for detail and perfection are evident in the quality control of Nautilus equipment. He was also instrumental in the development of Nautilus Magazine.
Dick Butkus, the former mauling linebacker of the Chicago Bears and a mainstay of the Miller Lite commercials also served as a low- key representative for Nautilus, although his role was not widely known at the time.
Only after a highly publicized trial of Arthur Jones for Income tax evasion was, it revealed (by the Orlando Sentinel in Florida) that Dick Butkus was officially on the Nautilus payroll.
That trial resulted in a victory for Arthur Jones over the Internal Revenue Service. The judgment was, not guilty.
These men and others whose commitment was as sincere but shorter lived formed the core of the empire. During my tenure with Nautilus Headquarters, I had the advantage of observing the inner-workings of the company.
To this day, I must admit that I admire the commitment exhibited by the "Nautilus purists.” It would be impossible to find a more dedicated, or more intense group in any international corporation.
The commotion caused by their leader Arthur Jones has given rise to many stories, some fact, and some fiction. Most I will hold for another time. Some I will share in this book.
As one example, at a seminar I attended on the campus of Duke University when heckled by a non-believer in the audience, Arthur Jones challenged the larger-framed man to "Step outside, and we will see whose training methods work better." The heckler decided not to check out the feisty Mr. Jones. Smart move!
Anyone, who has seen him in action, knows that he can be intense, demanding, profane, humorous, unsympathetic to bunglers, and possess a temper and tongue that can render an adversary senseless. At other times, he is a very humorous man.
One time, for example, he decided to videotape a television program on one of his HUGE rattlesnakes. Television cameras were set up for the event at the Nautilus television studios.
One camera, with a telephoto lens manned by master-camera man Harry L. was at the farthest end of a one hundred foot long hall, poised to record the event.
Harry’s camera aimed down the long hall to a small stage set that was to be the focal point of the taping. The set consisted of two chairs with a small platform about two feet high, between them.
The plan was for Arthur to place the snake on the platform in a coiled position, while Mary P. sat in one chair and Arthur in the other, with the snake between them, while they discussed rattlesnakes. The snake had other ideas.
A group of about 20 employees and visitors began to gather around the set. Up to a point, all went fairly well.
Arthur carried the snake from its second-floor cage in the Serpentarium, down a flight of about 20 stairs, into the stage setting.
This feat was one to watch, accomplished with bare hands and a long stick, curved on one end. This snake stick was the only barrier between Mr. Jones, the increasingly nervous onlookers and the soon to be agitated snake.
Down the stairs he came, the sea of onlookers parting quickly to let him pass. Winding his way through the crowd, he placed the snake carefully on the platform between the chairs. At this time, the snake began having second thoughts about the entire event.
Mary P., standing out of camera range was looking about as calm as you might expect under the circumstances. Mary had previous experience working with a mixture of animals during the videotaping of various wild life programs at Nautilus Television.
Now, Arthur was not sitting in one of the chairs, the snake by his side. Mary was sitting on the other side of the snake, which is between her and Arthur. Its rattling was beginning to make people very nervous, its intensity threateningly increasing.
Harry, the camera man, under fire to focus the camera, had his hands full tying to take orders from an increasingly agitated Arthur Jones as well as a director in a video booth who is giving Harry orders via the headset Harry is wearing.
The onlookers, me among them, and Joe Weider, publisher of Muscle & Fitness Magazine, were now edging away from the stage. Everyone was beginning to make eye contact with each other, as if silently asking “Is this safe?”
For a short time, everything seemed settled. Mary and Arthur were in their respective chairs. Even the rattlesnake seemed to like the attention. But, not for long!
Then, something got the snake’s attention. It decided to vamoose. First plunking off the platform onto the floor, it quickly slithered toward the crowd. People scattered in all directions.
As the snake attempted to head for an open door, Arthur kept pulling it back into the room by its tail. He picked its tail up and plopped it back on the floor as if the snake were a stick.
Arthur decided it was time to measure the sucker. He began screaming for someone to hold one end of a tape measure against the floor near the snake’s tail “Hold the end of the tape right here,” he barked.
I am think to myself, “Here’s my chance to endear myself to Mr. Jones and prove I am not afraid of a 15-foot rattlesnake. However, in a moment of more lucid thinking, I decide it is a no-no. I am not as dumb as I look. I couldn’t be!
Finally, someone stepped forward and put his foot on the end of the tape. He was told again in no uncertain terms, and in what can best be described as “barracks language” “I said to hold the ######&%$#$%% tape; I did not say step on it”
The brave soul knelt down and held the tape. The snake is pulled in line with the tape measure, and the measurement taken. All was going well. But now it was decided to get a picture of the snake with Arthur holding it at arms length.
Everyone adjourned to the next room. One of the large television studios, containing a stage that rises from the floor up to a level of about 4 feet. Up on the stage walked Arthur Jones, snake in hand.
Decades of snake handling were apparent in the way Arthur Jones handled the snake’s elusive head, with the snake stick. About a foot from its end, the stick has a curve resembling a fishhook.
Holding the snake in his hand, Arthur skilfully manoeuvred the curved end of the stick to keep a respectable distance between the snake’s mouth and Arthur’s body.
He walked to the front of the stage so that when the snake was held at the height of Arthur’s head, the snake’s body stretched below the level of the stage.
As the snake returned to its cage on the second floor, the employees began to filter back to their respective jobs. They have just witnessed their leader taunt death and survive.
Paul H., a resident Nautilus cameraman, snapped pictures of the event. Everyone became relaxed, beginning to realize what he or she had witnessed.
As the snake returned to its cage on the second floor, the employees began to filter back to their respective jobs. They have just witnessed their leader defy death and win. A heady feeling!
The ease Arthur displayed when handling he snake had a lasting effect on me. It was one of those, “if he can do it, I can do it” feelings. Several months later, I did have a chance to test my snake-handling skill.
Stopping by my house to pick up my exercise clothes, my friend Doug Feed and I, were alerted by a neighbor, that a large rattlesnake was “up the road in the bushes.” Doug, who worked for Nautilus and was responsible for feeding and grooming the 60 or so crocodiles kept on the Nautilus premises in Lake Helen, grabbed a rake and took off, up the road to confront the rattlesnake. I followed, with a garden hoe in hand.
Sure enough, there was a rather large snake, coiled in the brush, and apparently very angry. Doug and I, showing no fear and perhaps a complete lack of common sense, began to attempt to pin the snake and drag it out of the woods. All the time, the snake was letting us know that it did not want to go.
We sent a neighbor back to my house to get a large, metal garbage can.
Our plan was to drag the snake out of the woods, using our gardening tools, place it in the metal can, place a lid on its top, and take the snake to Arthur Jones. Easier said than done!
The snake coiled, struck at us several times, wrapped itself around small trees, and violently shook its rattlers. We persisted. Finally, we dragged the snake into the over-turned garbage can and we turned the can upright.
Then, after shaking each other’s hands in congratulations of our big-game capture, we placed the lid on the can. Doug took one handle, I took the other and we walked back to my car. The violent rattling of the snake echoed from the metal can. The snake was very upset with its new environment.
At this point, we were fearless. There was no way the snake could hurt us now. Unless, it could bite through the metal can. We climbed into my car, I sat in the driver’s seat and Doug was on the passenger’s side. The metal can with the snake inside was on Doug’s lap. We were in a Honda Prelude, not a heck of a lot of room under ordinary circumstances and less room; given the large can the seating was snug.
Confident, and happy about our capture, we started the drive back to Nautilus Headquarters. We joked that this gift for Arthur should insure our job for quite a while. We were in the speeding car for only a few minutes, when the loud rattling of the snake ceased and the metal can stopped vibrating.
All was quiet, except for the piercing pounding of our hearts, as we realized that we had failed to check the bottom of the can for any holes!!!!
At the same instant, my eyes and Doug’s met. I am thinking that it is all over for Doug. What will I tell his wife, Lydia and his children?
Pulling the car quickly to the side of the road, we jumped out and inspected the bottom of the can. All was well. No holes! Yahoo! We climbed back into the car, continued our journey and presented Arthur with the snake.
It turned out that the snake was a pregnant female and of a kind not in the Nautilus snake collection. To the best of my knowledge, it is still in the collection. Not many Nautilus employees can make that statement, or would want to.
Arthur Jones continues his love affair with snakes and crocodiles. He recently flew to Africa in his 727 and brought back to his farm in Ocala, Florida, a herd of elephants. They now share the farm with horses, huge crocodiles, a gorilla, and assorted other animals. A benevolent Mr. Jones saved them from possible extinction.
From rather humble beginnings, Nautilus has grown into a fitness empire. Along with an expanded line of commercial Nautilus equipment, a new market appeared. The in-home market projected as a multi-billion dollar market over the coming years, Nautilus plans to get its share.
Several in-home machines are presently available; others planned. Less expensive machines than the “standard” Nautilus models, intended for the high school and college market, are presently available. These “leverage” machines and the “infimetric” models should enable Nautilus to hold its market share.
Arthur Jones and Nautilus have travelled a long way.
The impact on fitness has been considerable. Nautilus was the right invention, at the right time.
It is doubtful however, if Nautilus would have succeeded without the aggressive, perceptive
Mr. Jones as the focal point. His ability to explain, in simple, logical terms, the flaws that were prevalent in fitness tools and exercise concepts, combined with his ability to offer alternatives, is as important in the success of Nautilus as his invention of the Nautilus equipment.
He has often said (tongue in cheek), “There are only three things of value: younger women, faster airplanes, and bigger crocodiles.” If he truly believes this, he has overlooked his most obvious gift; there is nothing more valuable than a rational mind capable of deductive logic.
His ability to perceive abstract concepts and integrate them into useful information is what set him above his contemporaries.
A preferred essay of Arthur Jones, “The Hunting of the Slan,” by Edgar Allan Foe, may sum up his view of life:
“I have sometimes amused myself by endeavouring to fancy what would be the fate of any individual gifted, or rather accursed, with an intellect very far superior to that of his race. Of course, he would not be conscious of his superiority nor could he (if otherwise constituted as man is) help manifesting his consciousness.
Thus, he would make himself enemies at all points. And since his opinions and speculations would likely differ from those of all mankind—that he would be considered a madman, is evident.
How horribly painful such a condition! Hell could invent no greater torture than that of being charged with abnormal weakness on account of being abnormally strong.
In like manner, nothing can be clearer than that a very generous spirit—truly feeling what all merely profess—must inevitably find itself misconceived on every direction—its motives misinterpreted.
Just as extremeness of intelligence would be thought fatuity, so excess of chivalry could not fail of being looked upon as meanness in its last degree—so with other virtues. This subject is a painful one indeed. That individuals have so soared about the plane of their race is scarcely to be questioned; but, in looking back through history for traces of their existence, we should pass over all biographies of ‘the good and the great,” while we search carefully the slight records of wretches who died prison, in Bedlam, or upon the gallows.”
Many people are on record as detractors of Arthur Jones. I am not one of them.
I first met him in the early 70’s, worked for him in the 80’s, and 90’s. Also, felt fortunate to spend much time observing and talking with him in Lake Helen, flew in his Citation Jet, with him as the pilot, during a massive lightening and thunder storm when flying into San Francisco.
Stayed at his home in Ocala, Florida, ate with him in a restaurant in Mexico as mice ran across the floor, and was privileged to share many a coffee with him, while marvelling at his insightful and powerful intellect.
At no time did he ever treat me with disrespect. He was a very fair and generous employer who freely shared his money and thoughts.
He is the type of man who, should you be faced with going to war to protect your family and the country, you would hope to have a man like him at your side.
End of Chapter
A very influential man in bbing. Made good cash, too.
No disrespect intended, but I thought he was much older, or died a while back, I think he looked 80, 20 yrs ago.
The true original Nautilus/High-intensity/Heavy-duty disciples, seem to be disappearing...who's left? Darden and Viator?
Oliva did follow them for a few years alos Figo
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