Nicole Koutras, Nicholas Kolassa, Richard Blanton, and Dr. Peter Magyari
Dr. Peter Magyari | Brooks College of Health | Department of Clinical and Applied Movement Sciences
Purpose: There are many studies comparing different methods of PNF stretching to each other and static stretching, but there are few studies comparing the use of a strap with PNF stretching. The lack of studies comparing unassisted strap PNF stretching to assisted PNF stretching for chronic increases in hamstring flexibility creates challenges in determining if using a strap is practical to recommend. Benefits of the strap include making PNF stretching more accessible to those who don’t have someone to assist them with PNF stretching, especially at home.
Methods: The study involved students who attend the University of North Florida and they were broken up into an exercise professional assisted (EPA) PNF stretching (n = 6) and a strap assisted (SA) PNF stretching group (n = 9). The groups stretched four times per week for four week and joint range of motion (ROM) was assessed at the beginning, and end of the study. A t-test was utilized to determine if differences between groups as a result of the intervention.
Results: There was no difference in change in hamstring ROM from the pre-test measurements to the post-test measurements within or between groups.
Conclusion: These findings are inconsistent with previous research that has shown increases in hamstring ROM when doing assisted PNF stretching. These inconsistencies could be from subject sample pool (young physically active students), inter-rater reliability (2 exercise science students and one PT student), and assessment time of day (varied based on subject availability).