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FUNK DAN; SWANK, ANN M.; ADAMS, KENT J.; TREOLO, DWAYNE
Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research: February 2001
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ABSTRACTInadequate flexibility is a contributing factor to muscle injury, especially with respect to the hamstring muscle group. Simple therapeutic regimens capable of increasing hamstring flexibility may reduce the injury potential of athletes with below-average hamstring flexibility or history of injury. This study compared 30 seconds of static stretching with 20 minutes of heat application on hamstring flexibility. A secondary purpose was to determine the relationship between the subject's attitude toward each treatment and the efficacy of treatment. Thirty undergraduate student athletes who were current members of a Midwestern collegiate football team participated in a 2 (treatment: heat vs. stretching) by 2 (counterbalanced order: heat first vs. stretching first) repeated-measures design. Results indicated that significant benefits to increase hamstring flexibility could be gained by using moist heat packs in comparison with static stretching despite a perceived attitudinal bias in favor of stretching. These findings may have implications for orthopedic fitness as well as injury prevention for an athlete with prior hamstring injury or inadequate flexibility.

Inadequate flexibility is a contributing factor to muscle injury, especially with respect to the hamstring muscle group. Simple therapeutic regimens capable of increasing hamstring flexibility may reduce the injury potential of athletes with below-average hamstring flexibility or history of injury. This study compared 30 seconds of static stretching with 20 minutes of heat application on hamstring flexibility. A secondary purpose was to determine the relationship between the subject's attitude toward each treatment and the efficacy of treatment. Thirty undergraduate student athletes who were current members of a Midwestern collegiate football team participated in a 2 (treatment: heat vs. stretching) by 2 (counterbalanced order: heat first vs. stretching first) repeated-measures design. Results indicated that significant benefits to increase hamstring flexibility could be gained by using moist heat packs in comparison with static stretching despite a perceived attitudinal bias in favor of stretching. These findings may have implications for orthopedic fitness as well as injury prevention for an athlete with prior hamstring injury or inadequate flexibility.

© 2001 National Strength and Conditioning Association