Much can be said about the benefits of stretching – there are at least a couple reasons to do it! And sure there’s been scientific evidence that stretching reduces the level of discomfort/soreness (Weppler et al, 2012) but there’s another side to that coin.
One research done March of this year looked at the effects of static stretching more thoroughly.
Static stretching is often utilized before and after the exercise or in this case bjj. While some claim it improves performance other claim it’s to prevent injuries. The majority of research in the field agrees on one thing – the effects of static stretches translate into strength loss more often than not!
Research of Eurico Peixoto Cesar and colleagues at the Laboratory of Biomechanics and Exercise Physiology tested this finding on Brazilian jiu-jitsu athletes specifically.
In order to get accurate estimates they tested grip strength dynamic and isometric kimono grip strength, range of motion along with passive torque. The static stretching routine consisted of the subject being seated with an arm close to the body, elbow at approximately 90 degrees while the researcher conducted the routine gradually until reaching the utmost discomfort point.
The results were conclusive – static stretching routines does increase Range Of Motion but they also reduce handgrip strength significantly, and the effect stays there!
Andreato, L.a , Franzói de Moraes, S.M.a, Lopes de Moraes Gomes, T.a, Del Conti Esteves, J.V.a, Vidal Andreato, T.a, Franchini, E.
Estimated aerobic power, muscular strength and flexibility in elite Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu athletes
Andreato, L.V. , Santos, J.F. , Esteves, J.V.
Physiological, Nutritional and Performance Profiles of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Athletes (2016) Journal of Human Kinetics
Marinho, B.F. , Follmer, B. , Del Conti Esteves, J.V.
Body composition, somatotype, and physical fitness of mixed martial arts athletes (2016) Sport Sciences for Health
Ferreira Marinho, B. , Vidal Andreato, L. , Follmer, B.
Comparison of body composition and physical fitness in elite and non-elite Brazilian jiu-jitsu athletes
(2016) Science and Sports