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Am J Sports Med. 1990 Mar-Apr;18(2):134-6.

Flexibility comparisons of junior elite tennis players to other athletes.

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Lexington Clinic Sports Medicine Center, KY 40504.


Flexibility measurements were obtained in 86 junior elite tennis players and compared to the flexibility measurements of 139 athletes involved in other sports. The measurements obtained included sit and reach flexibility, quadricep flexibility, hamstring flexibility, gastrocnemius flexibility, shoulder internal rotation, and shoulder external rotation. All measurements except sit and reach flexibility were obtained goniometrically. Tennis players were significantly tighter in sit and reach flexibility, dominant shoulder internal rotation, and nondominant shoulder internal rotation. They were significantly more flexible in dominant shoulder external rotation and nondominant shoulder external rotation. The flexibility differences found in tennis players suggest adaptations to the musculoskeletal demands of their sport. These results suggest that a sport-specific flexibility program may be necessary for junior elite tennis players in order to promote maximum performance and help prevent flexibility-related injuries.

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