Main Article Content
joint stiffness, thixotropy, muscle spindles, stretch reflex, joint impedance, recalibration, motor control, effort
Objective: the purpose of this study is to verify the efficiency of a new approach to improve range of motion of joints without stretching. In this comparison proprioceptive neuromuscular facilitation (PNF) is used as standard approach.
Methods: A total of 22 subjects suffering from lumbo-pelvic stiffness, 9 females and 13 males (mean age 40 years, range 20-63 years) are selected. Subjects are randomly allocated in two groups, A and B. The bending test is used to verify the range of motion before and after the intervention. Both groups are submitted to the new approach, and to the standard PNF for comparison, performed in two different sequences; data is then collected for analysis.
Results: in the first sequence, both PNF and the new approach are significantly effective P < .001 while in the second sequence only the new approach demonstrates to be effective.
Conclusions: while both PNF and the new approach are effective in improving range of motion (ROM), the new approach is more efficient and avoids pain in execution. The new approach is also effective in resolving the pain related to postural maladaptation, such as pelvic misalignment. Strikingly, after the performance of the new approach, all subjects reported a pleasant sensation of lightness, often described as little bubbles touching the skin of the exercised limb, a benefit awaiting further investigation.