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Yoga has branched into different types and become favored by people of all ages and religions. In so doing, it has changed its form.
So now we know why we stretch – to benefit our body and mind. Let’s see some techniques of stretching that might be of assistance.
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Stretching increases skin temperature so it warms up the myofascial tissues of the body, and is effecttive at warming up the body before physical activity.
Advanced stretching technique include pin and stretch technique as well as neural inhibition techniques (CR, AC, PIR, PNF) that relax / inhibit musculature.
There are many types of stretching techniques. Following is a guide to the many different types of stretching techniques that exist.
Stretching is essentially a mechanical manual/movement therapy that is aimed at making a soft tissue longer so that we can increase flexibility.
Two primary hypotheses have been proposed to explain the stretching-induced force deficit, in other words, the muscle weakness…
Research suggests that moderate aerobic exercise improves the amount we sleep so it can help with sleep deficiency.
This study found that remote stretching via self-myofascial release using foam roller massage of the plantar fascia does increase hamstring extensibility.
All types of stretching showed joint range of motion improvements over the long term, however, static stretching technique showed the greatest improvement.
The value of massage therapy continuing education is often dependent on learning how to apply fundamental skill sets of manual therapy.
The fact that simple stretching for only 10 minutes per day could reduce cancer tumor growth by 52% in this study involving mice is pretty amazing! Being a manual and movement therapy physician, author, and educator, it is clear to me that the human body needs movement. But to see a 52% improvement was incredible!
Dynamic stretching’s improvement seems to be related to the increased tissue temperature and increased neural facilitation. Therefore, if the goal of a warm-up is to increase joint ROM and to enhance muscle force and/or power, dynamic stretching seems to be a preferable alternative to static stretching.
One precaution is that when we do need to use the thumb or fingers, it is a good guideline to always try to contact the client with the pad of the thumb or fingers, instead of the tips of the fingers. In other words, do not lead with the fingertips.
The therapist performed a static assessment of the client’s posture and noted the typical upper crossed syndrome with a hyperkyphotic thoracic spine, a hypolordotic lower cervical spine, a hyperlordotic upper cervical spine, protracted head, protracted scapulae, and medially (internally) rotated arms.
When stretching the pectoralis musculature in a doorway, it is helpful to place the hand/forearm against the doorframe at various heights so that different aspects of the pectoralis musculature are preferentially stretched.
Especially effective for the pectoralis musculature is to use pin and stretch technique. With the client/patient supine and positioned toward the side of the table, pin the musculature with your finger pads as you bring the client/patient’s abducted arm off the side of the table and down into horizontal extension.
The therapist’s session consisted of moist heat, soft tissue manipulation, and stretching to the low back with double knee to chest stretch performed with agonist contract technique and stretching the left side of the low back with Armin side-lying on his right side.
It is necessary to determine what condition is causing the sciatic nerve compression and address that. If the cause is a pathologic disc, then addressing factors that affect disc compression is appropriate.
Self-care for shin splints begins with RICE: rest, ice, compression, and elevation. If the client/patient has anterior shin splints that is caused by running or some other physical activity that involves running, the client/patient should stop the activity until the condition is resolved.
The first goal of manual therapy treatment for shin splints is to relieve the tension of the involved musculature by lessening baseline muscle tone and eliminating any trigger points that might be present. The second goal is to treat swelling, if present.
Moist heat and stretching is recommended for a hypomobile sacroiliac joint (SIJ) and/or tight musculature that accompanies a hypomobile or hypermobile SIJ.
An excellent self-care exercise is to recommend that the client/patient lie supine on an exercise ball to help move the thoracolumbar spine into extension.
When performing soft tissue manipulation/massage, it is always wise to begin with light to medium pressure, and then transition to deeper pressure.
This study validates the efficacy of performing massage before stretching our clients, and recommending self-massage before stretching for client self-care.
As a rule, moist heat followed by stretching is beneficial for spinal hypomobilities, and strengthening is beneficial for regions of spinal hypermobility.
Joint mobilization treatment (Grade IV or V) is the most effective treatment technique to remedy a spinal joint dysfunction hypomobility once it is present.
Muscle stretching has inhibitory effects on spinal cord stretch reflexes in both stretched muscles and also non-local non-stretched muscles of the same leg.