Flexibility – Extending Your KnowledgeShawn Slevin
More important reasons to remain flexible…. Especially as we age. Thank you, @PaulBarry
How Connective Tissue Interacts With & Affects Your Flexibility
- Resistance to lengthening of a muscle is dependent on its Connective Tissue.
- Muscle & Connective Tissue can elongate at any age but will require hard work to gain improvements.
- Overuse of Connective Tissue can create fatigue, possible tear & limiting your Flexibility.
- Unused or under used Connective Tissue provides strong resistance which limits Flexibility.
- Elastin fray’s & loses some elasticity. Collagen levels increase & enhance stiffness.
- When a muscle gets longer, the surrounding Connective Tissue becomes tighter.
- Joint caps enclosing the end of our bones & ligaments account for most of our stiffness.
- Muscle fascia (Fibrous Connective Tissue) accounts for approximately 40% of stiffness.
- The key target area of stretching is our muscle fascia as it has the most elastic tissue.
- Be conservative early on as overstretching can weaken & destabilise a joint.
- Inactivity of muscle/joints can create chemical changes in Connective Tissue restricting Flexibility.
How Aging Is Believed To Affect Flexibility
- The primary factor is receiving quality & appropriate training for your athletic abilities.
- The slower rate of developing greater Flexibility is due to changes in our Connective Tissue.
- As we age our level of internal hydration reduces which reduces Flexibility.
- It is believed that stretching stimulates either production or retention of lubricants.
- The lubricants are believed to build up between the Connective Tissue Fibres.
- This action can prevent the normal formation of adhesions between Connective Tissue.
- This reduction in adhesions of Connective Tissue creates a better range in Flexibility.
- Exercise itself can delay some of the loss of Flexibility that occurs due to the ageing process.
Other Changes Attributed To Reduction Of Flexibility As We Age
- Increasing calcium deposits & adhesions.
- Increasing levels of fragmentation. 3
- Changes within the chemical structure of the Connective Tissue.
- Loss of suppleness created by replacement of muscle fibres with fatty collagenous fibres.
There have been no studies undertaken on the Ageing Process & its effect on Flexibility. However, the theories are based on known actions & their relationship to our human anatomy & physiology.
1, 2, 3, 4, 5 Alter M – The Science of Flexibility 2004