Publication Date



College of Arts and Sciences


Kinesiology: Exercise Science

Primary Subject Area

Biology, Physiology; Health Sciences, Rehabilitation and Therapy


static stretching, proprioceptive neuromuscular facilitation, dynamic, active isolated


Sports Sciences


The role of flexibility in exercise performance is a widely debated topic in the exercise science field. In recent years, there has been a shift in the beliefs regarding traditional benefits and appropriate application of static stretching. Static stretching has previously been proposed to increase exercise performance and reduce the risk of injury, however recent research does not support this belief consistently and may even suggest conflicting viewpoints. Several types of stretching methods have also been promoted including proprioceptive neuromuscular facilitation (PNF) stretching, AIS, and dynamic, and ballistic stretching. The role of flexibility in exercise performance continues to be researched with hopes to discover how these techniques affect exercise both acutely and long term. It is important to understand the effects of the various stretching types and determine when each is most appropriate to maximize human motion and performance. The purpose of this thesis is to focus on reviewing each major form of stretching and to provide the reader with the most current research supporting or negating their implementation in the health and fitness fields.