The effects of two proprioceptive neuromuscular facilitation techniques on flexibility and strength of the hip extensors
Lustig, Scott A.
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The purpose of this study was to examine the effects of two proprioceptive neuromuscular facilitation stretching procedures on flexibility and strength. Subjects were 41 females of various fitness and activity levels enrolled in Dance Fitness classes at Northern Illinois University. The subjects were randomly assigned to one of three groups: control (n=10), SR (n=12), and CR (n=10). The treatment groups then participated in a supervised stretching program 3 days per week for 7 weeks. All subjects were pretested and posttested for flexibility and strength of the hip extensors. Mean scores for flexibility did not significantly differ between groups following the treatment period (F [2, 37] = 2.12, p > .05). However, the SR group showed a 6.2% mean increase and the CR group showed a 6.8% mean increase, while the control group had only a 0.7% mean increase in flexibility scores. The analysis did reveal significant differences between the treatment and control groups in strength scores (F [2, 37] = 7.35, p < .05). Tukey’s post hoc test showed significant differences between the control and two treatments (p < .05), but no significant difference between the two treatment groups (p > .05). The results of this study suggest that SR and CR proprioceptive neuromuscular facilitation stretching procedures may be effective for simultaneously increasing flexibility and developing strength. Such information is of practical importance to coaches, athletic trainers, and exercise specialists interested in maintaining and increasing strength through the use of PNF stretching procedures.