Viscoelastic properties of muscle-tendon units. The biomechanical effects of stretching
DC Taylor, JD Dalton Jr, AV Seaber and WE Garrett Jr
Orthopaedic Research Laboratories, Duke University Medical Center, Durham, North Carolina 27710.
With repetitive stretching, we found that after four stretches there was little alteration of the muscle-tendon unit, implying that a minimum number of stretches will lead to most of the elongation in repetitive stretching. Also, greater peak tensions and greater energy absorptions occurred at faster stretch rates, suggesting that the risk of injury in a stretching regimen may be related to the stretch rate, and not to the actual technique. All of these clinically important considerations can be related to the viscoelastic characteristics of the muscle-tendon unit.