STATIC STRETCHING INTERFERES WITH GOLFING PERFORMANCE
Gergley, J. C., & Austin, S. F. (2009). Latent effect of passive static stretching on driver clubhead speed, distance, accuracy, and solid contact in male competitive golfers. ACSM 56th Annual Meeting, Seattle, Washington. Presentation number 1563.
This investigation determined the effect of two different warm-up treatments over time on driver clubhead speed, distance, accuracy, and consistent ball contact in male competitive golfers. Two supervised warm-up treatments, an active dynamic warm-up with golf clubs and a 20-minute total body passive static stretching routine plus an identical active dynamic warm-up, were followed before each performance testing session using a counterbalanced design on non-consecutive days. Immediately following the active dynamic warm-up treatment, Ss were instructed to hit three full swing golf trials with their driver with a one-minute rest between trials. Immediately following the passive static stretching treatment, Ss were instructed to hit three full swing golf shots and thereafter at 15, 30, 45, and 60 minutes post-passive static stretching with their driver with one minute rest between trials.
Passive static stretching significantly decreased clubhead speed, distance, accuracy, and solid contact when compared to the active dynamic warm-up condition. At 15, 30, 45, and 60 minutes post-passive static stretching, significant performance decrements continued but with diminishing magnitude. Clubhead speed measurements highly correlated with skeletal muscle force production and recovered at faster rates than measures dependent upon neuromuscular coordination.
Implication. Passive static stretching should be avoided prior to golf practice or competition in favor of a gradual active dynamic warm-up with golf clubs. It appears that the muscle tendon unit recovers from passive static stretching at faster rates than coordinating/neurological mechanisms contained in the muscle spindle.
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