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Stretching (5 second rule?)

post #1 of 18
Thread Starter 
I recently heard that the latest state of the art advice is that stretches should only be held for 5 seconds. Apparently this is due to a reflex response which can occur after 5 seconds causing a stretching injury. Unfortunately I didn't get any details. Anyone around know any more about this 5 second rule?
post #2 of 18
Google PNF stretching and golgi tendon.
post #3 of 18
During my therapy while recovering from reattchment of my ruptured achilles tendon, the therapists all stressed that stretches should last several minutes. A warmup routine should occur first and then stretching should take multiple minutes. They had me standing on an inclined plane to stretch the achilles and calf muscle for periods that grew from five to ten minutes after first spending up to 20 minutes on a stationary bike.
post #4 of 18

dont bounce

its the bouncing short duration "stretches" that cause a reflex. if you have ever done yoga, you see your body get deeper into the stretch and relax the antagonist muscles. try a few minutes on the hamstrings (or any other area ) but be sure that you are stretching the right spot and not just trying to get your head to the knee.
post #5 of 18
I guess if the goal is to avoid injury, then 5 seconds will help. If you want to increase your range of motion, then warm up first and hold each stretch for a few minutes. Never bounce to stretch, that's not stretching; that's exercising.
post #6 of 18
After years of religiously stretching, I began to notice that many of the injuries I have sustained have been due to the stretching itself and not the activity. I have always paid close attention on how to stretch (no bouncing, no hard or aggressive stretching, no painful stretching while using proper technique) and felt that the 5-10 minutes or pre activity stretching was necessary. I no longer believe that it is necessary.

I now tend to stretch after the activity with a mind to slow yoga like stretching in order to maintain flexibility.

My pre workout routine in geared to warming up all muscle groups but without frank stretching.

For what it's worth.

Mark
post #7 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by CTKook View Post
Google PNF stretching and golgi tendon.
A similar technique is Active Isolated Stretching or AIS. Some folks swear by it.
post #8 of 18
It's pretty-much accepted among sports physios in Oz that you stretch the various bits for minutes. although some say do it gradually, others want brutality and pain. This is mostly to improve various bits especially those which are damaged or not in good condition... part of a stretching routine, not pre-sport stretching (which I gave up on years ago).

The thing seems to be that having a routine of slow long stretches happens independantly of the sport you're playing. Sort-of muscle/tendon maintenance.
post #9 of 18
During my time in martial arts, we spent lots of time stretching both prior to class and at home. Most of this could be described as exrtreme and done with combinations of graduated "ballet bars" and with a partner; much of it involved pain and concentration. This could be described as "developmental and progressive".

Prior to any competition, stretching was kept to a minimum. Likewise, prior to skiing, stretching was thorough but brief and preventative since being "overly stretched" prior to heavy and active sport decreased performance.
post #10 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by Maddog View Post
After years of religiously stretching, I began to notice that many of the injuries I have sustained have been due to the stretching itself and not the activity. Mark

I've heard that there is no systematic research showing stretching results in a net decrease in injuries. I only do it if some thing specific feels better after the stretch.
post #11 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by newfydog View Post
I've heard that there is no systematic research showing stretching results in a net decrease in injuries. I only do it if some thing specific feels better after the stretch.
Absolutely correct!
post #12 of 18
In my martial arts training we always warmed up our muscles before stretching. Each stretching was maintained for a long time and repeated. Stretching for increased flexibility must be done carefully; it's easy to go too far, especially if you have a high pain threshold.

Having increased flexibility puts you at INCREASED risk of injury, because you are more easily able to adopt vulnerable positions.


What about stretching to avoid cramps?
post #13 of 18
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lisamarie View Post
Absolutely correct!
Are we better off skipping the early morning stretching routine before skiing? Like Maddog my injuries seem to come from stretching rather than the actual skiing.
post #14 of 18
Yes you are! Stretching should take place after skiing.
post #15 of 18
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lisamarie View Post
Yes you are! Stretching should take place after skiing.
Ok, I skipped the stretching this morning and just did a movement warmup. That means I did movements on dryland that more or less simulated what I would do on the slopes. No problems at all and thats with a bunch of super sticky snow and bumps in the mix.

For the post ski stretching should you do it before, after or during the drinking phase?
post #16 of 18

Stretching

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lisamarie View Post
Absolutely correct!

Lisamarie,

I thought the problem arises when one stretches without first warming up. I have had a serious achilles tendonitis condition in my right foot as well as plantar fascitis in my left foot. Before skiing I skate on the flats for about ten minutes. Then I take my first run, a mellow one on an easy blue trail, and then I stretch for seven to ten minutes. Generally, I also stretch a little while waiting in the lift line for the next one or two runs. Then I go all out, and stretch at the end of the day.

This pattern works for me. Are you suggesting that it would be better not to stretch until the end of the day?

Tom Orwell
post #17 of 18
In most cases, yes. However, there are some gender specific issues. Usually, men are much much tighter than women, so if there is a specific issue with a tight achilles, a bit of pre-skiing stretching prior to skiing will probably not hurt you, IF, as you said, you warm up first.

Quote:
Ok, I skipped the stretching this morning and just did a movement warmup. That means I did movements on dryland that more or less simulated what I would do on the slopes. No problems at all and thats with a bunch of super sticky snow and bumps in the mix.


At Epicski Academy, I did an On Snow warmup with my group. Next year, I will have to get it on tape, since it's hard to describe on a message forum. Basically, I did some exercises that involved holding your ski poles with both hands and planting them in the snow. Then, you round and flatten your lower back. Some people with back problems said that this was the first time that their back did not bother them while skiing.

I'll be teaching this in late August when I teach my ski fitness week in Portillo. Maybe I can get someone to take a video!
post #18 of 18
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