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J Strength Cond Res. 2003 May;17(2):274-8.

A comparison of two stretching protocols on hip range of motion: implications for total daily stretch duration.

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Department of Physical Therapy, The Medical College of Ohio, Toledo, Ohio 43614, USA.


It is theorized that the total stretch time in a day is more important than the actual single stretch duration time. The purpose of this study was to compare 2 stretching protocols, keeping total stretching time equivalent. The 2 protocols were a 10-second duration stretch and a 30-second duration stretch. Although the stretch durations differed, the total stretching time over the course of a day was held constant at 2 minutes for both protocols. Participants were randomly assigned a protocol to each of their legs: subjects stretched 1 leg with the 10-second protocol and the opposite leg with the 30-second protocol. The 10-second stretch was repeated 6 times for a total of 1 minute; the 30-second protocol was repeated 2 times for a total of 1 minute. Stretching was performed twice daily (a total of 2 minutes each day) for 6 weeks. All stretching was performed to the hamstring muscles. Hip flexion measurements were recorded at pretest, 3-weeks, and 6-weeks. Subjects demonstrated significant gains in range of motion for hip flexion over the course of 6 weeks, p = 0.000. No differences existed between the 2 protocols. Range of motion gains were equal between the 2 stretching protocols. The common denominator was total stretch time for a day. Regardless of the duration of a single stretch, the key to improvement was the total daily stretch time. These findings are important as they allow clinicians and individuals to customize stretching protocols to meet individual needs.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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