Acute stretch perception alteration contributes to the success of the PNF “contract-relax” stretch.

Mitchell UH, Myrer JW, Hopkins JT, Hunter I, Feland JB, Hilton SC

This study was conducted to determine if the alteration of the stretch perception is a possible explanation for the range of motion (ROM) gains of the CR stretch. Eighteen subjects performed two stretches in randomized order: the slow stretch and the CR stretch. The stretch force was measured and compared between the slow stretch and CR stretch. There was a significant difference between the stretch force that could be applied in the PNF stretchand the slow stretch. The average stretch tolerance progressively increased with successive trials from 120.6 N in the first trial to 132.4 N in the fourth trial. The authors conclude that the alteration of stretch perception plays a role in the success of the CR form of PNF stretching. At least four repetitions of the CR stretch are recommended to get the greatest ROM gain.

Journal of Sports Rehabilitation, 2007, 16(2):85-92

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