What’s This Research About?
What happens when we stretch? The human body is a highly dynamic system, so a lot goes on when we stretch including neurological, mechanical, chemical, and hemodynamic changes. This study focused only on the latter investigating how different durations of stretching affect microcirculation in the muscle.
They were interested in the blood volume and oxygenation because past research has shown that after stretching there is an increase in microcirculation which is one of the many factors correlated with increased flexibility and extensibility. There is also evidence that hemodynamics change pre, during, and post stretching so they recorded blood values at each time.
TITLE: The Effect of Static Stretching Duration on Muscle Blood Volume and Oxygenation
PUBLICATION: The Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research
AUTHORS: Hideaki Matsuo, Masafumi Kubota, Seiichiro Shimada, Ippei Kitade, Mayumi Matsumura,Tadayoshi Nonoyama, Yusuke Koie, Hiroaki Naruse, Ai Takahashi,Hisashi Oki,Yasuo Kokubo, Akihiko Matsumine
Near Infrared Spectroscopy (NIRS): Uses an LED that penetrates the skin superficially to measure absorption rates of different biological compounds in the vessels using a photodetector. The different light absorption properties of oxygenated hemoglobin, deoxygenated hemoglobin, and total hemoglobin (blood volume) allow the ability to extrapolate the amount of each component.
Static Stretch: A slow and steady stretch with an end position held for 15 – 30 seconds or longer. Can be done with or without a partner, actively, or passively.