The effects of the Rolf method of soft-tissue manipulation therapy on running economy (RE) was examined in male distance runners (VO2 max = 67.7 ml [middle dot] kg-1 [middle dot] min-1). Steady-state oxygen uptake (VO2 submax) at three velocities (214 m [middle dot] min-1; 241 m [middle dot] min-1; 268 m [middle dot] min-1), rating of perceived exertion (RPE) and biomechanical variables previously associated with RE were measured during treadmill running in those who received no treatment (control), sport massage or Rolfing. Lower back-hamstring flexibility was also assessed. Pre- to posttreatment differences among groups were nonsignificant for all dependent variables. It was concluded that Rolfing had no effect on RE, RPE, running mechanics or flexibility in the present group of subjects.
(C) 1990 National Strength and Conditioning Association