Most people stretch when they do exercise, while some others do not stretch because they feel that stretching should not always be done.
Stretching is done for several reasons, some of which are stretching can make people more flexible, minimizing the risk of injury, reducing the risk of pain, increasing exercise performance.Stretching is considered very beneficial in sports.
Is stretching really important to do when doing sports? The answer cannot be determined quickly. There are several factors that determine whether a stretch really should be done or not.
By doing randomized trials, the researchers were able to determine with certainty the effect of stretching. Lottery could be used in a randomized trial. Participants were divided into two groups; one group did stretch, and the other group did not stretch. Sports results (injuries, pain, performance) owned by the two groups were compared.
Researchers have conducted experiments in 2,631 recruits and get the results that routing stretching in three months does not have a significant effect on reducing the risk of injury. The next trial on 2.377 people also gave similar results. Several other trials also found that the stretching effect is very small. A review of a trial concluded that stretching done before and after exercise do not produce a clinically significant reduction in muscle soreness.
Flexibility and Strength
As mentioned above, several randomized trials have measured the performance of the sport as a result of stretching, whereas most other trials studied the effects of stretching on flexibility and muscle strength as two important factors in the success of the sport.
Some experiments confirmed that the ballet dancer and yoga teacher has the better flexibility of muscles than people in general. We need to know the differences between the acute effects and chronic effects produced by stretching. Acute effects is generated just moments after stretching done, while chronic effects will be experienced in a few months or a few years after stretching done.
Acute stretching results in increased flexibility in just a few seconds or a few minutes after stretching done. Acute stretching produce temporary effects and can be completed in just a few minutes of finishing stretch. Some researchers do not believe that stretching has chronic effects on muscle flexibility, but they believe that routine stretching can improve muscle tissue adaptability to various kinds of sports.
Simple observation of everyday concluded that the Balinese dancers and teachers of yoga have better muscle flexibility. However routine stretching rarely show great effect in controlled trials.
Stretching does not make a human able to tolerate excessive stretching. Sometimes, increased tolerance of stretching can make people seemed to feel more flexible, though it is not in reality.
However the acute effects and chronic effects produced by stretching can improve performance of some sports. Most gymnasts have better sports performance compared to the average person because they have better muscle flexibility.
The most obvious impact of stretching is to increase the ability of muscles to produce force. A conclusion states that stretching will decrease muscle strength, so we should not stretch too much if we want to do sports that require muscle strength.
Is stretching really important to do?
As described above, the stretching has benefits that are not too big on sports performance, so you are free to stretch or not. You will not be blamed if you don’t stretch before doing sports.
For athletes, stretching routine can improve exercise performance associated with flexibility.Stretching routine may not be suitable for some athletes, for example heavy lifters.
This conclusion is based on several studies regarding the effects of static stretching routine done in a long time. Stretching can be done in several ways, most of which only became the subject of several small studies.
A warning states that the chronic effects of stretching routine are not too unknown so that each person doing routine stretching should be aware of the negative chronic effects of routine stretching.
We all do not know the chronic effects of stretching, both positive and negative. Therefore we should be vigilant and not overdo routine stretching. We also do not really know which method is superior and produce greater positive chronic effects. This is done in a structured way to reduce the risk of injury. Also serves as heating can substantially reduce the risk of injury. Some experts advise everyone to stretch only when they exercise.