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Ankle-Dorsiflexion Range Of Motion After Ankle Self-Stretching Using A Strap

In-cheol Jeon, Oh-yun Kwon, Chung-Hwi Yi, Heon-Seock Cynn, Ui-jae Hwang

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Context  A variety of ankle self-stretching exercises have been recommended to improve ankle-dorsiflexion range of motion (DFROM) in individuals with limited ankle dorsiflexion. A strap can be applied to stabilize the talus and facilitate anterior glide of the distal tibia at the talocrural joint during ankle self-stretching exercises. Novel ankle self-stretching using a strap (SSS) may be a useful method of improving ankle DFROM. Objective  To compare the effects of 2 ankle-stretching techniques (static stretching versus SSS) on ankle DFROM. Design  Randomized controlled clinical trial. Setting  University research laboratory. Patients or Other Participants  Thirty-two participants with limited active dorsiflexion (<20°) while sitting (14 women and 18 men) were recruited. Main Outcome Measure(s)  The participants performed 2 ankle self-stretching techniques (static stretching and SSS) for 3 weeks. Active DFROM (ADFROM), passive DFROM (PDFROM), and the lunge angle were measured. An independent t test was used to compare the improvements in these values before and after the 2 stretching interventions. The level of statistical significance was set at α = .05. Results  Active DFROM and PDFROM were greater in both stretching groups after the 3-week interventions. However, ADFROM, PDFROM, and the lunge angle were greater in the SSS group than in the static-stretching group (P < .05). Conclusions  Ankle SSS is recommended to improve ADFROM, PDFROM, and the lunge angle in individuals with limited DFROM.