PainScience.com • Good advice for aches, pains & injuries
bibliography*The PainScience Bibliography contains plain language summaries of thousands of scientific papers and others sources, like a specialized blog. This page is about a single scientific paper in the bibliography, Konrad 2014.

Increased range of motion after static stretching is not due to changes in muscle and tendon structures

updated


Tags: stretch, exercise, self-treatment, treatment, muscle

PainSci summary of Konrad 2014?This page is one of thousands in the PainScience.com bibliography. It is not a general article: it is focused on a single scientific paper, and it may provide only just enough context for the summary to make sense. Links to other papers and more general information are provided at the bottom of the page, as often as possible. ★★★★☆?4-star ratings are for bigger/better studies and reviews published in more prestigious journals, with only quibbles. Ratings are a highly subjective opinion, and subject to revision at any time. If you think this paper has been incorrectly rated, please let me know.

Another data point in the plasticity vs. tolerance debate: “The increased range of motion could not be explained by the structural changes in the muscle-tendon unit, and was likely due to increased stretch tolerance possibly due to adaptations of nociceptive nerve endings.”

original abstractAbstracts 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.

BACKGROUND: It is known that static stretching is an appropriate means of increasing the range of motion, but information in the literature about the mechanical adaptation of the muscle-tendon unit is scarce. Therefore, the purpose of this study was to investigate the influence of a six-week static stretching training program on the structural and functional parameters of the human gastrocnemius medialis muscle and the Achilles tendon.

METHODS: A total of 49 volunteers were randomly assigned into static stretching and control groups. Before and following the stretching intervention, we determined the maximum dorsiflexion range of motion with the corresponding fascicle length and pennation angle. Passive resistive torque and maximum voluntary contraction were measured with a dynamometer. Muscle-tendon junction displacement allowed us to determine the length changes in tendon and muscle, and hence to calculate stiffness. Fascicle length, pennation angle, and muscle tendon junction displacement were measured with ultrasound.

FINDINGS: Mean range of motion increased significantly from 30.9 (5.3) to 36.3 (6.1) in the intervention group, but other functional (passive resistive torque, maximum voluntary contraction) and structural (fascicle length, pennation angle, muscle stiffness, tendon stiffness) parameters were unaltered.

INTERPRETATION: The increased range of motion could not be explained by the structural changes in the muscle-tendon unit, and was likely due to increased stretch tolerance possibly due to adaptations of nociceptive nerve endings.

related content

One article on PainScience.com cites Konrad 2014 as a source:

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: