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12. 4. 2012.

Stretching types

1. Static Stretching
Static stretching is the most common type of stretching. You gently assume a stretch position and hold it for 20 to 30 seconds. There is no bouncing or rapid movement. You should feel a mild pulling sensation, but no pain. You should feel the stretch in the belly of the muscle, not in the joints.

2. Passive Stretching
Passive stretching is also known as relaxed stretching and it's basically the same as static stretching. The only difference is that with passive stretching you don't supply the force to stretch a muscle, a partner or some type of apparatus does.

3. Dynamic Stretching
Dynamic stretching consists of controlled leg and arm swings that gently take you to the limits of your range of motion. There is no bouncing or rapid movement. Examples of dynamic stretching would be slow, controlled leg swings, arm swings, or torso twists.

4. Ballistic Stretching
Ballistic stretching consists of trying to force a part of the body beyond its normal range of motion by bouncing into a stretched position. An example of ballistic stretching would be bouncing down repeatedly to touch your toes. Ballistic stretching can lead to injury and should only be used by highly conditioned athletes who need to prepare for a volatile, high-speed activity.

5. Active Isolated (AI) Stretching
AI stretching consists of assuming a position and then holding it there with no assistance other than using the strength of your muscles. An example of AI stretching would be bringing your leg up high and holding it in that extended position. The theory is that as one muscle contracts the opposing muscle will relax, resulting in a better stretch. AI stretches can be difficult and rarely need to be held any longer than 10 to 15 seconds.

6. Isometric Stretching
Isometric stretching consists of getting a muscle into a stretched position and then resisting the stretch isometrically. An example of isometric stretching would be having a partner hold your leg up high while you attempt to force your leg back down to the ground.

7. Proprioceptive Neuromuscular Facilitation (PNF)
PNF is not really a type of stretching, but is a technique of combining passive stretching and isometric stretching in order to achieve maximum flexibility. PNF was originally developed by physical therapists for rehabilitation purposes. PNF consists of a muscle being passively stretched, then contracted isometrically against resistance while in the stretched position, and then being passively stretched again through the resulting increased range of motion. PNF usually employs the use of a partner to provide resistance against the isometric contraction and to then take the muscle through its increased range of motion.

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