ROM’s = range of motion.
Just as strength training can be a stimulus for muscles and tendons to grow in width, long hold stretching such as for 4 minutes for each stretch is a stimulus for muscles and tendons to grow in length resulting in a maintained or increased range of motion..In TheETG we don’t do traditional stretching before or after workouts.
We have formal stretch sessions spread across the month all year around. These sessions take about 80 – 90 minutes.They consist of long duration holds [4 minutes] for each stretch.
The importance of range of motion…..range of motion impacts energy expenditure. The greater resistance to movement your tight tissues create, the greater the energy expended just to move the limbs. Add this to issues at ground contact, the loss of elastic energy in the calfs, achillies, and plantar tissues, at some point that stuff adds to energy necessary to cover the same distance and time on the clock.
Injury prevention……hamstring, calf, or quad issues occur at times when your fitness level is moving forward. The rate of tissue tightening as your fitness level progresses in any given week may exceed the rate [frequency of stretching and strengthening] and/or effectiveness of your stretching protocols. Strength requirements of tissues that are the weakest link in the chain may exceed the frequency or effectiveness of your strengthening protocols.
stretching vs heart disease [a.k.a. vascular disease, a.k.a blood vessel issues]
“Maintenance and enhancement of vascular endothelial function contribute to the prevention of cardiovascular disease and prolong a healthy life expectancy. Given the reversible nature of vascular endothelial function, interventions to improve this function might prevent arteriosclerosis.”
“Accordingly, we studied the effects of a 6-month static stretching intervention on vascular endothelial function and arterial stiffness and investigated the reversibility of these effects after a 6-month detraining period following intervention completion.”
“The study evaluated 22 healthy, non-smoking, premenopausal women aged ≥40 years. Subjects were randomly assigned to the full-intervention (n = 11; mean age: 48.6 ± 2.8 years) or a half-intervention that included a control period (n = 11; mean age: 46.9 ± 3.6 years).””Body flexibility and vascular endothelial function improved significantly after 3 months of static stretching.”
“In addition to these improvements, arterial stiffness improved significantly after a 6-month intervention. However, after a 6-month detraining period, vascular endothelial function, flexibility, and arterial stiffness all returned to preintervention conditions, demonstrating the reversibility of the obtained effects.”
“A 3-month static stretching intervention was found to improve vascular endothelial function, and an additional 3-month intervention also improved arterial stiffness. However, these effects were reversed by detraining.”
H.Shinno, et al
Evaluation of a static stretching intervention on vascular endothelial function and arterial stiffness
European Journal Of Sport Science — Volume 17 #5 — 2017 — page 586