In this video. I’m going to explain to you, why stretching is a waste of time Hi, and welcome back to Physiotutors. If your goal is to lengthen a specific muscle you should first ask yourself what is your specific goal is if you are trying to prevent injuries then you should realise that there is no scientific evidence Proving that stretching has a preventative effect Some people stretch because they think it’s important to be flexible What you should realize however is that a short muscle can actually be a functional adaption and beneficial to you Imagine soccer players who have to extend their knees quickly when they kick a ball short Hamstrings will help the knees to slow down the movement and they thus Help to reduce the stress on the passive structures of the knees like the cruciate ligaments the knee capsule and the collateral ligaments So trying to lengthen a muscle only makes sense when you have a specific Task in mind that will benefit from an elongated muscle for example Elongated hamstrings might help me to reach the bottom position of a deadlift better with an erect spine So do I stretch to get longer hamstrings? absolutely not Different studies that we will link in the description down below Have shown that stretching does not alter tissue length quickly Unless it’s done a lot over a really long time and then the changes in a range of motion are rather due to neural effects Then due to tissue lengthening The Solution is eccentric strengthening O´Sullivan et al. (2012) have shown that eccentric training causes Sarcomerogenesis Which are added sarcomeres in the muscle because the muscle has to create force in an elongated state Timmins et al. (2015) have even shown that this can be achieved with 14 days of just three sessions per week in the case of the Hamstrings there are several exercises One example that you could do is the Romanian deadlift next to the nordic Hamstring curl of course which Severely reduces the number of hamstring injuries and which you can watch by a click in the top right corner so what you do is that you are only slightly bending your knees during the dead lift and You are focusing on the eccentric phase by lowering the weight within three to five seconds You can pause the weight on the lowest point for about two seconds, and then move through the concentric phase rather quickly Ok we hope you liked this video And you give it a thumbs up make sure to hit that subscribe button before you leave and check us out on Facebook instagram Or become a patreon. This was Kai for Physiotutors. I’ll see in the next video. Bye


  1. But per example, isn't it prove that tight harmstrings will increase the pressure in the femoro-patellar joint?
    (P.S : in any case if you decide to stretch, the way the two people on the beach are stretching is a bad way to do it, with the little impulsions they give, due to the inverse myotatic reflex.)

  2. maybe you should also add some stiff legged deadlifts for hams? just a better variation of the same exercise for hams (my opinion).. Thanks for the video!

    PLUS: maybe change the name of the video and add for prevention? Because in some of your videos, you recommend stretching for mobility and here you talk about prevention. The name of this video makes an impression as if you're 100% opposed to stretching.. Well, maybe you are, not sure, just trying to understand. Thanks..

  3. I would have thought this video would be specific enough to mention static stretching is different than either dynamic or PNF and work under different theories and mechanism (GTO and inverse-myotatic reflex for example) also, it should depend greatly on the patient population, for example the post-surgical patient: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3273886/

  4. There are too many different athletic populations that increased flexibility is key to their success and health; ex. Dancers, Aerialists, Acrobats, Contortionist, circus performers. Of course, balance between strength/stability and flexibility/mobility/ functionality is always the goal. But to make a statement that stretching is useless, is a net cast too wide (no matter the studies). As always thank you for great informative videos. Maybe this one could be retitled.

  5. I am a Physical therapist and a medical massage therapist. I see everyday patients injured from working out, running, lifting, etc and any of them stretched before they got injured. From my experience, stretching is important to avoid those kind of injuries. Also, from personal experience, stretching help me a lot for a sciatic nerve relief and when i feel tingling and numbness on one of my arms in consequence of a major car accident I just had few days ago. I am totally disagree fro your statement "It's a waste of time".

  6. Hello
    That's the main issue with youtube: spreading mis information….
    before you should read this about many metanalysis about streaching and risk injury:
    "Stretching immediatly before exercise is different from stretching at others times.
    Streching before exercise does not appear to prevent injury.
    Regular strecthing that is not done immediatly before exercise may prevent injury."
    From: Evidence-Based Sports Medicine
    publié par Domhnall MacAuley,Thomas Best

  7. I have also heard that eccentric resistance training is more effective than stretching when the therapeutic goal is to lengthen muscles. I have utilized a lot of contract-relax stretching in clinical practice and found this technique to be effective as well. Both forms of stretching involve active contraction of the targeted muscle group (autogenic inhibition for contract-relax stretching). I wonder if there is a difference in effectiveness between eccentric resistance training and contract-relax stretching. Thanks Physiotutors!

  8. Agree to disagree! Having studied stretching technics, I want to say that stretching can be useful, not for everyone maybe, not for every sport or muscle, but surely in rehab and in increasing ROM and ease of movement. And interestingly enough, science shows no evidence that being flexible prevents you from injuries, but it also says being Tight does increase the injury rate… well science you know!

  9. What I find funny is you list an article stating assisted-stretching/high intensity stretching sessions actually increased biceps FL, yet you state stretching is a waste of time… Don't have all the info because I don't have access to the full article, but it was kind of ironic to see that… One also should have looked at a systematic review for stretching that looks at RCT's just like your eccentric training systematic review.


  10. Could anyone explain why over development of a muscle group can lead it to becoming "tighter"? For instance, why do people who do a lot of bench press (and neglect other exercises) develop rounded shoulders?

  11. How about postural disorders due to tight muscles. … like hyperlordosis due to short iliopsoas muscle. .. or flat back due to tight Hamestring muscles. .. we should then stretch the tight muscles. … Or the eccentric strengthening is better …. & can you tell me why ??? Thanks

  12. on 90-90 test I got a result of 10-20 degree instead of 90, when I try to sit with "straight", normal curved spine, I cannot extend my leg. When I get the abnormal comfortable position during sitting which is very bad for the spine, I could extend my leg easily. Probably I've got a seriously shortened hamstring. It obstructs me in the free moving. I've been trying several types of hamstring stretches, but had not been working any of them. Maybe that is the reason what you are explaining. So to get it in the original normal condition I have to use that practices what you have illustrated? Have I understood well? Thanks

  13. Hello Kai and Andreas,
    Currently I’m working on my thesis, my goal is to find effective ways of treating M.gastrocnemius contractures as a result from spasticity. Do you guys think eccentric training might be useful?

  14. Physiotutors,
    If stretching is a waste of time what eccentric exercises can one do to get the straddle splits?

  15. My question is not so much the method of lengthening (although I will certainly incorporate eccentric exercises) as it is determining the muscles that need lengthening. So, as you mention that a soccer player having tight hamstrings is actually beneficial, if that same player comes in with lower back pain as an example, might the hamstring tightness is contributory? I have treated many professional football players and the vast majority have very tight quads, hip rotators, calves, and if they present with low back pain it becomes a diagnostic dilemma.

  16. My question is not so much the method of lengthening (although I will certainly incorporate eccentric exercises) as it is determining the muscles that need lengthening. So, as you mention that a soccer player having tight hamstrings is actually beneficial, if that same player comes in with lower back pain as an example, might the hamstring tightness is contributory? I have treated many professional football players and the vast majority have very tight quads, hip rotators, calves, and if they present with low back pain it becomes a diagnostic dilemma.

  17. Something that has been working for so many people and for so long can't be dismissed by 1 or 2 studies. I too used to read and believe these studies until I realized that every 2 years a new study comes out on the same subject that contradicts the previous one. Good channel by the way keep it coming.

  18. So one defensive mechanism that a tight hamstring would provide is helping prevent hyper-extension of the knee joint.
    But would a tight muscle (shortened muscle fibres) not also make you more prone to tearing the muscle under a force that a more flexible muscle would generally allow?
    i.e. If the hamstring muscle is flexible (has elongated fibres) then you would be less likely to tear it during spontaneous eccentric action (such as if you rapidly extend the leg in kicking a ball or something).

  19. There needs to be a distinction made here. Stretching before an exercise certainly has the potential to increase risk of injury. Instead it is best to warm the muscles up in the way you need them to function. However when a muscle is strengthened it may decrease in length. So static stretching, or contract-relax type stretching can be effective post exercise. The word static is key here. In the video, the people on the beach are not performing a static stretch. The research may indicate static stretching may not be the best for increasing length but is very important for maintaining it.

  20. Hi i often do alot of middle distance running and football and after suffering a hamstring injury a year ago my hamstrings have both become extremely short. I can only just touch my knees when reaching for my toes. How do you recommend i lengthen them again and why are they so short?

  21. Could you explain more about eccentric training for length?

    Should one overload the muscle or use a light weight? I've seen both done, but is one objectively better?
    Should focus be on endrange, or is it necessary to go through the entire ROM?
    Are there optimal reps, sets and durations?
    Is this applicable to upper and lower body work?

    It would be great to see this technique applied to lats, quads and pecs on your channel.

    Keep up the good work!

  22. Hi
    What do you mean when you say that the "change in ROM is rather due to neural effect then due to tissue lengthening" ? You mean that the nerve tissues is extended than muscle tissues ?

  23. I’m sick of hearing weightlifters keep telling you how stretching is a waste of time. I’m sorry but weightlifting is a waste of time, not stretching. Stretching might has no evidence to reduce injuries, but doing intensive activities with tight muscles does! People with low mobility have the higher tendency to pull their muscles and break their bones! Stretching isn’t just important in sports but it’s also important in your daily life; whereas, weightlifting does not do anything to help besides showing how bulky you are.

  24. 1) If somebody has postural pain from working on a computer all day they will generally experience much of this discomfort in the upper traps. In your view then, these muscles should not be stretched, but rather posture should be considered, right?

    2) But the muscles are already overloaded due to their posture, so would it make sense to strengthen these muscles by eccentric training if they are already overloaded?

  25. I'm in school for massage therapy and my class just finished learning about PNF stretching as well as learning about stretching trigger points after they have been treated. Would these types of stretches still be considered useless?

  26. This does makes sense and is more scientific. thank you for making this video and sharing this knowledge.

  27. interesting… I have been trying to gain range of motion in my lower back by leaning forward and sitting with legs spread. what eccentric exercise would you recommend to replace this? thanks

  28. what about people with herniated disks- are you still giving them deadlifts? many of my clients are benefitting from hamstring stretches that dont involve lumbar flexion….

  29. What should be do with yours study ….i m a physio and i have seen every patient got benifit from streching…put this study in garbage that streching is waste of time …dnt see paper ..
    See patient

  30. As a physio myself, I've always been getting lip from older physios when I say there's no need to stretch (at least not static). Excellent video! Thanks!

  31. totally agree. i used to perform stretching for months still i had tight hamstring then i perform heavy deadlift, within weeks the problem resolve.

  32. What is your opinion on PNF stretch then on elongating muscle? Will it be more effective? I know it is mostly going to be a neurological but can it elongate the muscles faster?

  33. The studies espacially from Konrad et al.are talking about static stretching. How about ballistic stretching or other forms of stretching ?

  34. haven't seen all of the movies yet, but it would be educational to inform/ educate on what type of stretches do help with neuromuscular challenges within movement.

  35. Physiotutors,
    If stretching is not sufficient for elongation, does it have any positive effect or should it still be incorporated into an exercise program?

  36. The title is misleading. Should be: when stretching and when not. Your title suggests that stretching is per se wast of time in every circumstance.

  37. In the case of the soccer player in your example, is a strengthened and lengthened hamstring better than a strong but short hamstring? Which, in your experience is more prone to injury?

  38. Static stretching just increases the pain threshold to stretch. What exactly happens to the muscle in this type of a stretch?

  39. I like the video but we have to explain that stretching makes an élongation-contraction of the agonist-antagonist system. This Is like isometric job and Stretch. scientifically there are no evidences but surely the e repetition of these excercises works on the coordination and the reflex response of the muscles and the TENDON of course..

  40. THIS VIDEO IS VERY MISGUIDED!!!! I fully understand the concept of what you are attempting to communicate…but the research which you cite and have learned from is in regards to those who have flexibility on musculature BEYOND the healthy norm!!!! Muscle inflexibility is a PRIMARY reason for the need for P.T. intervention and your video title is amazingly off base. Of course, ACL injuries are common…but MUCH less so than Hamstring tears. Healthy muscle flexibility is a primary component of overall good long-term health as SHOULD NOT be discouraged, I strongly encourage you to correct your massive over-generalization!!!! EXCESSIVE FLEXIBILITY CAN BE HARMFUL should be the title!!! Perhaps it would be wise to delete this video and start over. This goes beyond getting wrong some rarely used diagnostic tool.

  41. Since watching this video and reading the article, I now incorporate both stretching and eccentric exercises for a joint stiffness/muscle tightness problem!
    Thank you!!

  42. So are you saying stretching my hamstrings won't help my back injury? Why does my PT make me do all these stretches before during and after my exercises? Is he a quack?

  43. If I wanted to increase my flexibility overall or say increase mobility in my wrists, wouldn't I stretch to do that? or is there something else I would do instead of stretching to help increase flexibility and mobility?

  44. but would stretching the pecs help say in correcting a rounded shoulder posture? Sounds like what your saying is that no matter how much you stretch the muscles don't lengthen, even temporarily? But then what would explain the temporary relief one feels of the said rounded shoulder and improvement in reducing the hyper-kyphosis posture by doing say a door pec stretch for 5 mins?

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