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J Athl Train. 2012 Jan-Feb;47(1):5-14.

Acute lower extremity running kinematics after a hamstring stretch.

Author information

1
Austin Peay State University, Clarksville, TN, USA. davisa@apsu.edu

Abstract

CONTEXT:

Limited passive hamstring flexibility might affect kinematics, performance, and injury risk during running. Preactivity static straight-leg raise stretching often is used to gain passive hamstring flexibility.

OBJECTIVE:

To investigate the acute effects of a single session of passive hamstring stretching on pelvic, hip, and knee kinematics during the swing phase of running.

DESIGN:

Randomized controlled clinical trial.

SETTING:

Biomechanics research laboratory.

PATIENTS OR OTHER PARTICIPANTS:

Thirty-four male (age = 21.2 ± 1.4 years) and female (age = 21.3 ± 2.0 years) recreational athletes.

INTERVENTION(S):

Participants performed treadmill running pretests and posttests at 70% of their age-predicted maximum heart rate. Pelvis, hip, and knee joint angles during the swing phase of 5 consecutive gait cycles were collected using a motion analysis system. Right and left hamstrings of the intervention group participants were passively stretched 3 times for 30 seconds in random order immediately after the pretest. Control group participants performed no stretching or movement between running sessions.

MAIN OUTCOME MEASURE(S):

Six 2-way analyses of variance to determine joint angle differences between groups at maximum hip flexion and maximum knee extension with an α level of .008.

RESULTS:

Flexibility increased between pretest and posttest in all participants (F(1,30) = 80.61, P < .001). Anterior pelvic tilt (F(1,30) = 0.73, P = .40), hip flexion (F(1,30) = 2.44, P = .13), and knee extension (F(1,30) = 0.06, P = .80) at maximum hip flexion were similar between groups throughout testing. Anterior pelvic tilt (F(1,30) = 0.69, P = .41), hip flexion (F(1,30) = 0.23, P = .64), and knee extension (F(1,30) = 3.38, P = .62) at maximum knee extension were similar between groups throughout testing. Men demonstrated greater anterior pelvic tilt than women at maximum knee extension (F(1,30) = 13.62, P = .001).

CONCLUSIONS:

A single session of 3 straight-leg raise hamstring stretches did not change pelvis, hip, or knee running kinematics.

PMID:
22488225
PMCID:
PMC3418114
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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