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Flexibility Practical

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Introduction

Flexibility Practical "Flexibility is the range of motion of a joint or series of joints and their associated muscles. It involves the ability to move a part of the body through the full range of motion allowed by normal disease free joints."(www.adtdl.army.mn) There are different types of flexibility, according to Kurz: * Dynamic flexibility (Kinetic flexibility): This is the ability to perform dynamic (or kinetic) movements of the muscles to bring a limb through its full range of motion in the joints. * Static-active flexibility (Active flexibility): This is the ability to assume and maintain extended positions using only the tension of the agonists and synergists while the agonists are being stretched. E.g. lifting the leg and keeping it high without any external support (other than your own leg muscles). * Static-passive flexibility (Passive flexibility): This is the ability to assume extended position and then maintain them using only your weight, the support of your limbs, or some other apparatus. Active flexibility is harder to develop than passive flexibility; not only does active flexibility require passive flexibility in order to assume an initial extended position, it also requires muscle strength to be able to hold and maintain that position. * Factors limiting flexibility: * Internal influences: -The type of joint (some joints aren't meant to be flexible). -The elasticity of muscle tissue (muscle tissue that is scarred due to previous injury is not very elastic). ...read more.

Middle

This is stretching, or "warming-up", by bouncing into (or out of) a stretched position, using the stretched muscles as a spring, which pulls you out of the stretched position. (E.g. bouncing down repeatedly to touch your toes). This type of stretching is not considered useful and can lead to injury. It does not allow your muscles to adjust to, and relax in, the stretched position. It may instead cause them to tighten up by repeatedly activating the stretch reflex." (www.bath.ac.uk) * Proprioceptive Neuromuscular Facilitation (PNF) > "Proprioceptive neuromuscular facilitation (PNF) stretching was originally developed as part of a neuromuscular rehabilitation program designed to relax muscles with increased tone or activity. It has since expanded to the conditioning of athletes, as a method of increasing muscular flexibility." (Lab. Manual) > It is currently the fastest and effective way known to increase static-passive flexibility. It isn't really a type of stretching but a combination of passive stretching and isometric stretching to achieve maximum static flexibility. > "PNF refers to any of several post-isometric relaxation stretching techniques in which a muscle group is passively stretched, then contracts isometrically against a resistance while in the stretched position, and then is passively stretched again through the resulting increased range of motion. NF stretching usually employs the use of a partner to provide resistance against the isometric contraction and then later to passively take the joint through its increased range of motion. ...read more.

Conclusion

The best way to increase flexibility is by performing dynamic stretches, supplemented with static stretches. The best way to increase active flexibility is by performing active stretches, supplemented with static stretches. The fastest and most effective way currently known to increase passive flexibility is by performing PNF stretches. Overall, you should expect to increase flexibility gradually. Don't try to increase flexibility too quickly by forcing yourself. Stretch no further than the muscles will go without pain. Muscle How to measure R.O.M. Normal R.O.M. Quadriceps Knee flexion 140? Hamstrings Knee extension 90? Biceps/Triceps Elbow flexion 145? Lower leg Ankle dorsiflexion 20? past vertical Shoulder girdle Shoulder abduction 180? * Contraindications: * Joint: * "Immediately post-injury as this may increase the inflammatory process." * "Early fractures where movement may cause disruption of a fracture site." * "Where pain may be beyond a persons tolerance." * "Muscle or ligament incomplete tears where further damage may occur." * "Where the circulation may be comprised." (Trew and Everett, 1997) * If a bone blocks motion. * If one has had a recent fracture of bone. * An acute inflammatory or infectious process in or around a joint is suspected or known. * Osteoporosis is suspected or known. * There is sharp, acute pain with joint movement or muscle elongation. * One has had a recent sprain or strain. * One suffers from certain vascular or skin diseases. * There is a loss of function resulting in a decrease of range of motion. * * * * ?? ?? ?? ?? Lisa Power HP1 11/3/02 and 8/4/02 ...read more.

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