Effects of a 3-Minute Standing Stretch on Ankle-Dorsiflexion Range of Motion

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Kimberly Pratt
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Richard Bohannon
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Context:

Stretching exercise regimens are routinely prescribed to increase range of motion (ROM) and diminish injuries.

Objective:

To examine the effect of a 3-minute passive stretch on ankle-dorsiflexion ROM in a nonpathological population.

Setting:

University laboratory.

Design:

Prospective, randomized, controlled study.

Participants:

24 apparently healthy volunteers.

Interventions:

Subjects stood with their heels suspended from the edge of a platform. The experimental subjects stretched for 3 minutes on 3 consecutive days.

Main Outcome Measures:

Passive ankle-dorsiflexion ROM.

Results:

Ankle-dorsiflexion ROM increased significantly (P < .0005) over the course of each day’s stretch. No significant gains in ankle-dorsiflexion ROM were realized over 3 days.

Conclusions:

These findings suggest the need for further research to determine the stretching frequency and duration that will result in lasting increases in ankle-dorsiflexion ROM

The authors are with the Dept of Physical Therapy at the University of Connecticut, Storrs, CT 06269-2101.

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