One article on PainSci cites Hill 2017: Quite a Stretch
PainSci notes on Hill 2017:
Based on just five eligible studies out of 195, this review concludes that there were “consistent findings from multiple low-quality studies that indicate there is no difference in the immediate improvements in hamstring flexibility when comparing proprioceptive neuromuscular facilitation [contract-relax] stretching programs to static stretching programs in physically active adults.” Clearly the evidence is limited, but if there’s a signal in that mess, it’s a weak one.
Common issues and characteristics relevant to this paper: ?Scientific papers have many common characteristics, flaws, and limitations, and many of these are rarely or never acknowledged in the paper itself, or even by other reviewers. I have reviewed thousands of papers, and described many of these issues literally hundreds of times. Eventually I got sick of repeating myself, and so now I just refer to a list common characteristics, especially flaws. Not every single one of them applies perfectly to every paper, but if something is listed here, it is relevant in some way. Note that in the case of reviews, the issue may apply to the science being reviewed, and not the review itself.
- Garbage in, garbage out — not enough good quality data to meaningfully review/analyze.
- Negative results despite a significant risk of bias that should tend to generate false positives.
original abstract †Abstracts here may not perfectly match originals, for a variety of technical and practical reasons. Some abstacts are truncated for my purposes here, if they are particularly long-winded and unhelpful. I occasionally add clarifying notes. And I make some minor corrections.
Clinical Scenario: Increasing hamstring flexibility through clinical stretching interventions may be an effective means to prevent hamstring injuries. However the most effective method to increase hamstring flexibility has yet to be determined. CLINICAL QUESTION: For a healthy individual, are proprioceptive neuromuscular facilitation (PNF) stretching programs more effective in immediately improving hamstring flexibility when compared with static stretching programs? Summary of Key Findings: A thorough literature search returned 195 possible studies; 5 studies met the inclusion criteria and were included. Current evidence supports the use of PNF stretching or static stretching programs for increasing hamstring flexibility. However, neither program demonstrated superior effectiveness when examining immediate increases in hamstring flexibility. Clinical Bottom Line: There were consistent findings from multiple low-quality studies that indicate there is no difference in the immediate improvements in hamstring flexibility when comparing PNF stretching programs to static stretching programs in physically active adults. Strength of Recommendation: Grade B evidence exists that PNF and static stretching programs equally increase hamstring flexibility immediately following the stretching program.
- “Uninvolved versus target muscle contraction during contract: relax proprioceptive neuromuscular facilitation stretching,” Daniel Camara Azevedo, Raphael Marques Melo, Ricardo Vidal Alves Corrêa, and Gordon Chalmers, Physical Therapy in Sport, 2011.
- “The Effectiveness of PNF Versus Static Stretching on Increasing Hip-Flexion Range of Motion,” Landon Lempke, Rebecca Wilkinson, Caitlin Murray, and Justin Stanek, Journal of Sport Rehabilitation, 2018.
This page is part of the PainScience BIBLIOGRAPHY, which contains plain language summaries of thousands of scientific papers & others sources. It’s like a highly specialized blog. A few highlights:
- Photobiomodulation therapy is not better than placebo in patients with chronic nonspecific low back pain: a randomised placebo-controlled trial. Guimarães 2021 Pain.
- No effect of creatine monohydrate supplementation on inflammatory and cartilage degradation biomarkers in individuals with knee osteoarthritis. Cornish 2018 Nutr Res.
- The CANBACK trial: a randomised, controlled clinical trial of oral cannabidiol for people presenting to the emergency department with acute low back pain. Bebee 2021 Med J Aust.
- Relationships Between Sleep Quality and Pain-Related Factors for People with Chronic Low Back Pain: Tests of Reciprocal and Time of Day Effects. Gerhart 2017 Ann Behav Med.
- Modulation in the elastic properties of gastrocnemius muscle heads in individuals with plantar fasciitis and its relationship with pain. Zhou 2020 Sci Rep.