Dissertations and Theses @ UNI


Open Access Thesis


Stretch (Physiology); Swimming--Physiological aspects; Women swimmers; Academic theses;


While stretching is commonly part of the pre-performance routine in many sports including swimming, its function has been a controversial topic in the research community. Researchers have found decrements in performance measures such as force (Fowles, Sale, & MacDougall, 2000) and torque (Avela, Kyrolainen, & Komi, 1999) after stretching. While still controversial, some researches have also found decreases in one repetition maximum lifts (Kokkonen, Nelson, & Cornwell, 1998) and various jumping tests (Knudson, Bennett, Com, Leick, & Smith, 2001) after the inclusion of stretching.

Because there is much conflicting evidence in the literature pertaining to stretching and a lack of research on multi-response protocols, the purpose of this study was to determine the effects of stretching on the performance of a 25-yard freestyle swim test. Eleven females from the University of Northern Iowa's Swim Team participated in the study. Each participant swam a 25-yard maximal freestyle sprint on two separate afternoons, once after a warm-up and once after a warm-up and a five-muscle, 15 minute stretching protocol.

Results of the study showed no significant difference (p > .05) in 25-yard swim times after the use of stretching. Additional variables including block time, flight time, flight distance, takeoff velocity, trajectory angle, and angular velocity of the knee were also measured, although frame-by-frame videotape analysis of the start revealed no significant differences in any of these measures as well. It was concluded from this study that stretching prior to a 25-yard sprint did not significantly effect swim time.

Year of Submission


Degree Name

Master of Arts


School of Health, Physical Education, and Leisure Services

First Advisor

Forrest Dolgener

Second Advisor

Kevin Finn

Third Advisor

Robin Lund


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Date Original


Object Description

1 PDF file (54 leaves)



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