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If you’re a sports or fitness coach who is using stretching to try to help people with existing aches and pains, then pay careful attention to this list of reasons if you want to avoid having to specialize in injury.

The big takeaway of these 5 Reasons is: stretching doesn’t help with, or prevent, injury and it’s a waste of your coaching time.

Sports and fitness coaches need to know these reasons because it means you can remove the things your people don’t like spending time on anyway and of course, if you can give your people more training time, they’ll LOVE you for it.

Reason # 1 – Predicting The Future Is A Risky Business

It’s impossible to say that stretching categorically prevents injury because nobody can predict the future. There’s too many factors involved in the creation of injury for scientific studies to be accurate enough in their predictions.

Reason # 2 – Human Logic Gets In The Way

When coaches think of stretching, we think of trying to target individual muscles or groups of muscles. With over 600 muscles in the human body, it’s almost impossible to logically think through every possible combination to be able to stretch the “right bit”

Reason # 3 – Logic Takes Time

Even if we could think through all these combinations, stretching each muscle or group of muscles separately takes time, even if you’re only spending 30 seconds on each one

Reason # 4 – Stretching Methods Don’t Match Reality

Most stretching methods, whether they are active, passive, dynamic or anything else, don’t take into account the spiral in the tissue that gets tighter with strength. Trying to stretch muscle fibres that are twisted like a wet cloth, by pulling from either end, won’t do much to unwind the intensity of the spiral and create any long-lasting benefit from the activity.

Reason # 5 – Stretching Is A False Positive

We’ve been taught, over time, that the feeling a muscle stretch is a good thing, but it in many cases it’s not. A muscle will feel “stretched” whether it is initially too short or too long but when we only focus on the sensation of the stretch we can easily be stretching the wrong part of the body. This can actually do more harm if someone we coach is struggling with existing aches and pains

At this point you should definitely take a moment to question whether you’re just going through the motions with the stretches you teach, or whether you think they are actually beneficial to the people you coach.

Oh, one more thing, if you really want to help people with existing aches and pains, this Facebook community “the Injury Hackers gang” lays it all out for you! Check it out here

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