A COMPARISON OF MANUAL AND MACHINE ASSISTED PROPRIOCEPTIVE NEUROMUSCULAR FACILITATION FLEXIBILITY TECHNIQUES

  • D.G. Burke
  • C.J. Culligan
  • L.E. Holt

Abstract

In this study, thirty-six subjects, eighteen females and eighteen males, were randomly assigned to one of two PNF flexibility training groups; one manual (3S), one machine (Perfect Partner Series, Lower Body Machine) and to one control group. Training consisted of daily stretching exercises five days per week within the respective groups for three weeks. Pretest and post-test on all nine dependent variables were taken on days one and fifteen, respectively. All measures of flexibility included six variations of sit and reach, three active, three passive, right and left hip flexion and trunk flexion. Daily measures of active sit and reach were recorded before and after each training session. Statistical analysis consisted of comparisons of group, sex and daily differences, using a two-way analysis of variance with repeated measures. These analyses revealed that both training groups had significant (P<0.05) improvements in all nine measures for pre to post-test changes. These increases were significantly different from the control group. The machine group had significantly (P< 0.05) greater scores than the 3s group for two measures, trunk flexion and right hip flexion. Females were significantly better than the males for one measure; trunk flexion. Daily changes did not differ significantly between the two training groups, however, additive increases in both pre and post training active sit and reach were apparent for each of the two training groups.