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Relationship Between Stretch Duration And Shoulder Musculature Flexibility
To date, studies focussing on the effect of stretching on flexibility have focused almost solely on the effect of chronic stretching rather than the effects of acute stretching performed immediately prior to physical activity. The effects of different static stretches were assessed on passive shoulder range of motion (ROM). Eighty males were randomly assigned into one of four groups: 10 minutes of quiet sitting, without stretching (NS); three sets of 10 second-hold static stretching of the shoulder, chest and upper-arm muscle groups (ST10); three sets of 20 second-hold static stretching of the shoulder, chest and upper-arm muscle groups (ST20) and two minutes warm-up on an arm ergometer at 25 watts resistance (WU) on shoulder ROM. Mean left and right shoulder forward flexion following NS, ST10, ST20 and the WU protocols were all significantly higher at the post-test. While left shoulder hyperextension ROM was greater following NS, ST20 and WU protocols, right shoulder hyperextension ROM was increased following the ST10, ST20 and WU interventions but not NS. The findings demonstrated that increasing stretching duration from 10 to 20 seconds provides no additional benefit in increasing passive shoulder forward flexion and hyperextension ROM. In addition, the findings indicated that two minutes of warm-up on an arm ergometer at 25 watts resistance (WU) is equally effective as three sets of 10 and 20 seconds of static stretching of the shoulder, chest and upper-arm musculature at improving shoulder forward flexion and hyperextension ROM.
Keywords: Flexibility, static, stretching, range of motion, warm-up.
African Journal for Physical, Health Education, Recreation and Dance Vol. 14 (2) 2008: pp. 199-205