Both are critical. These guys are absolute morons who sit behind a desk all day and have no practical experience or no practical knowledge of how to use stretching. Google cites over 100,000 references to him and his work on the internet. Active vs. passive stretching--the benefits of both. Just as there are many different ways to strength train, there are also many different ways to perform a stretch. And the Handbook will show you, step-by-step, how to perform each stretch correctly and safely. It isn’t as bad as we’ve been telling everyone it is. I like to think of foam rolling as ironing for the muscles, a necessary precursor to stretching. Taking deep, slow breaths is recommended while performing static stretches. Static stretching can be relaxing, both physically and mentally. Now, if you’ve kept up with any of these studies you’ll know that the recommendations for the last 15 to 20 years is that static stretching should be avoided. Magazines such as Runners World, Bicycling, Triathlete, Swimming & Fitness, and Triathlon Sports have all featured his work. An exercise that passively takes a muscle to the point of tension for a short period of time or an extended period of at least 20 seconds. The foam roll is “the poor mans massage.” Foam rolling is a great way to get changes in the density of the muscle prior to stretching. Learn more. Static stretching is mostly performed as a passive stretch where the muscle is not active and is stretched by external forces. For over 20 years I’ve been fighting against the “Static Stretching is Bad” mind-set that has invaded the health and fitness industry. While dynamic stretching is based on movement, static stretching involves moving a joint as far as it can go and holding it for a length of time, typically 30 to 90 seconds. Further, the researchers suggest that the cause of the weakening effect is mechanical, meaning a relaxation of the associated tendons, which then lose their ability to store energy. If you must static stretch prior to activity (because your sport requires it/it is part of your personal routine), consider then progressing to a gentle, dynamic warm-up prior to the actual activity. Over time, the goal of static stretching is to increase ROM for all applicable muscles in the body. The main difference between static stretching and dynamic stretching is that dynamic stretches are performed with movement. It's often recommended as a way to stretch before vigorous exercise. You usually generate force through your own body weight or by pulling with your arms. This information should not be considered complete, up to date, and is not intended to be used in place of a visit, consultation, or advice of a legal, medical, or any other professional. But you know what? All of these things that I’ve been against for the last 20 years now, the scientists have come out and said…. Static stretching is a stretch that is held in a particular position. Research in the eighties demonstrated that static stretching prior to exercise could decrease power outputs. The process for my athletes every day is the same. Static stretching is a method of stretching a muscle beyond its normal limits, then holding the stretch for anywhere between a few seconds and a few minutes. However, these stretches should only be done after athletic activity, during cool-down). Immediately after the stretch is released there is an increase in blood flow to the muscles beyond pre-stretching levels. Static stretching means a stretch is held in a challenging but comfortable position for a period of time, usually somewhere between 10 to 30 seconds. One reason athletes don’t like to stretch is that it’s hard. So by contracting one muscle group (agonist) it will force the opposing muscles group (antagonist) to relax. So recently in March, a new study came out. This is the third part of this 3-part series on mobility & flexibility training for tennis. A sustained, low-intensity lengthening of soft tissue (e.g., muscle, tendon, or joint capsule), performed to increase range of motion. Over time, the goal of static stretching is to increase ROM for all applicable muscles in the body. The conclusions of the systematic review, contradict common recommendations from the last 15 years and highlights several misconceptions and limitations in the literature. Static stretching is the reach-and-hold technique of stretching. Also, stop stretching when you experience any sharp and unbearable pain. Usually this controlled stretch is hold for several seconds and it is perfectly suited to increase range of motion i.e. Active Stretching Popular health The stretching of agonist muscles while opposed by the antagonists. Not only is dynamic stretching a better warm up, but it may be a means of improving flexibility without the negative effects of passive stretching. Disclaimer: The health and fitness information presented on this website is intended as an educational resource and is not intended as a substitute for proper medical advice. This led to a huge overreaction; the elimination of static stretching and the birth of dynamic warm-up. But I was curious about how static stretching compared to dynamic stretching (stretching with constant movement). Stretch all areas. This illustrates Cosgrove’s short-term overreaction and long term under-reaction concept. Static Stretching. The theory is that warm muscle simply elongates and returns to its normal length. One side of the truth is that an active warm-up prior to high intensity exercise is the best way to prevent acute injury. And no, you don’t need to be a yogi to prioritize flexibility. Stretching is an important component of physical fitness, according to the American Council on Exercise -- and without it, your joints can stiffen and your risk of injury increases. Static stretching to work on increasing flexibility. Static stretching has been shown to have negative consequences when performed before particularly explosive activities 34 and may affect performance in … The stretches you perform should be comfortable and require minimal exertion. If you want to be healthy long term, add some good old-fashioned stretching to the workout. Isometric stretching is a type of static stretching (meaning it does not use motion) which involves the resistance of muscle groups through isometric contractions (tensing) of the stretched muscles (see section Types of Muscle Contractions). But what was the conclusion of this new study or new review? Static Stretching After Running. Static stretching is used to stretch muscles while the body is at rest. Static stretching is great…when done correctly and at the right time. Known as the “grab and hold” method, proponents of static stretching claim it will increase performance, reduce muscle soreness, and reduce your chances of getting injured. Massage, Active Release Technique (ART), Muscle Activation Technique (MAT), or soft tissue mobilization are all terms used to apply to techniques used to change the density of a muscle. A static stretching routine after your training run or distance race should be a fixed part of the whole physical activity after a cool down period. A lack of flexibility seems to be a causative factor in many of the gradual onset injury conditions that plague today’s athletes. About the Author: Brad Walker is often referred to as the "Stretch Coach" and has even been called the Stretching Guru. Static flexibility is sometimes referred to as passive flexibility. 20 years they’ve been telling people this stuff and now all of a sudden they come out and say oh, sorry. And although in the past I’ve been very diplomatic, I’ve been very polite as far as this research, all the research over the last 20 years has been concerned. 2) Static stretch. Use the athlete’s bodyweight to assist. All they have done is gone back and had a look at the old studies and they’ve concluded the opposite of what the studies concluded over the last 15 or 20 years. So, they haven’t discovered anything new. 30 seconds is the minimum duration to get the benefits of stretching, whereas two minutes is the maximum. Know the difference. Physical therapy Stretching of an extremity in which a position is assumed and then held with no assistance other than the strength of the agonist muscles—e.g., raising the leg, then holding it, using only the leg muscles to maintain extension. For example, lying on your back with one leg raised in the air and gently easing the leg in toward the chest to stretch the hamstrings. static stretching on running performance may lead to com- promised performance and is likely to be related to a reduced rate of force transmission due to reduced muscle stiffness, increase flexibility. cise. On the other hand, “The best time to use static stretching is post-workout,” advises Coutts. Over the years, research has shown that static stretching produces best results when done after working out or on rest days,  but not as a part of warm up exercises before an explosive workout session. So all those recommendations that we’ve made over the last 15 or 20 years as far as avoiding static stretching or not doing static stretching, we’ve actually changed our mind now and static stretching is okay to do. Static stretching is the most common form of stretching found in general fitness and is considered safe and effective for improving overall flexibility. Take care and I’ll see you next time. Dynamic warm-up would follow to prepare the muscles for exercise.