Japanese bestseller about doing the splits to Yellow Kite

Japanese bestseller about doing the splits to Yellow Kite

Yellow Kite has acquired Japanese bestseller Even the Stiffest People Can Do the Splits, a book claiming it can teach readers to do the splits in just four weeks.

Senior commissioning editor Tamsin English acquired UK and Commonwealth rights from Neil Gudovitz at Gudovitz & Company Literary Agency to publish in November.

The book, written by the Japanese fitness instructor known simply as Eiko, and originally published in Japan in 2015, has already sold 1.2 million copies, according to Hodder. Eiko is in her fifties and began teaching yoga after a decade working as an aerobics instructor. She became a sensation in her home country when a YouTube video she posted - "Stretches That Will Enable Even Inflexible People to Do the Splits" - became popular, attracting six million views.

In the book, "Queen of the Splits" Eiko claims she can teach readers how to do the splits in four weeks. What's to be gained is not only a limber body but health benefits such as better balance, reduction in lower back pain and the risk of joint injuries and improved circulation and overall flexibility. 

Her techniques are said to work for all ages, with some of Eiko's students now doing the splits in their seventies "with ease". At the book's heart is a carefully-structured plan, asking readers to start by doing two of her basic stretches every day. Then to add one new stretch every week thereafter. The routine takes no more than five minutes a day.

English said: "Queen of the Splits' Eiko is a phenomenon in Japan and Yellow Kite is thrilled to be bringing her four-week plan to the UK, Australia and New Zealand. Doing the splits is the epitome of flexibility but as Eiko shows us, there are so many other amazing health benefits too such as improved circulation, injury prevention and recovery, as well as increased strength.”