PNF Stretching?

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Fossa
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PNF Stretching?

Postby Fossa » Mon Feb 22, 2010 9:30 pm UTC

So flexibility has long been my Achilles heel. The flexibility in my legs has, at times, been so bad that it's caused pain in my lower back. I've been trying to stretch regularly, but I inevitably fall off my routine as life and work take their toll. Recently I've heard about PNF stretching and I'm having some difficulty in knowing what to make of it.

I've heard fairly contradictory reports. I've heard that it's the absolute best way to improve long term flexibility and I've heard that it's only suitable for rehab and largely ineffective for proper flexibility training. I've heard it should only be done once every 48 hours (and never before physical exertion) and I've heard that it should be done every day, multiple times a day.

Obviously some of this is rubbish. Any of you have any experience with it to shed light on which is and which isn't? Any other tips for long-term flexibility gains while we're at it?

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TheSkyMovesSideways
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Re: PNF Stretching?

Postby TheSkyMovesSideways » Mon Feb 22, 2010 11:42 pm UTC

It works. It is extremely effective. It can be done every day. It should be avoided if the muscle you want to stretch is injured. It is also known as "isometric" stretching.

If you want to learn a lot about how and when to stretch, pick up a copy of the book Stretching Scientifically by Thomas Kurz. It is by far the best book available on stretching technique and the physiology relating to it.
I had all kinds of plans in case of a zombie attack.
I just figured I'd be on the other side.
~ASW

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Fossa
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Re: PNF Stretching?

Postby Fossa » Sun Feb 28, 2010 7:33 am UTC

Hmm, my after stretching pretty thoroughly for about three days I started getting what felt like really bad cramps. The deepest and upper most portion of my calves felt stiff and painful. Massaging it out helped, but was only a temporary solution. I took a break from it and it took a few days for the feeling to subside. Is that normal? Something to be alarmed about? Perhaps a sign I should slow it down a bit?


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