What’s This Research About?

Does stretching one part of a myofascial chain impact another part of that chain?

When considering Tom Myers’ superficial back line (SBL) in particular, do hamstring and gastrocnemius stretches increase the range of motion in the neck? (The SBL includes the achilles tendon, gastrocnemius, hamstrings and sacrotuberous ligament, lumbar fascia, and erector spinae.)

This paper aims to determine if remote stretching (distally on the hamstrings) is as effective as local stretching (neck muscles). The authors are interested in the potential application of myofascial chains for treatment and training programs. They hypothesized that 1. both remote and local exercises would improve neck ROM more than no treatment 2. local stretching is better than remote stretching, and 3. that the largest increases would be in the sagittal plane.

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