Flexibility measured by Fingertips-to-Floor test among groups practicing yoga, Brazilian jujitsu, tricking and tai chi in comparison to non-active group

Henryk Knapik 1,2,3, Andrzej Szuszkiewicz3,4, Szczepan D Mateja2, Grzegorz Rzetecki1, Agata Niewiadomska-Matuła5
1University of Physical Education in Katowice, Poland
2PRO-EKO-NATURA Henryk Knapik, Poland
3Wing Chun Academy in Cracow, Poland
4Polish Wing Chun Kung Fu Association in Cracow, Poland
5Jagiellonian University, Poland

Background & Study Aim: Flexibility is considered as significant component human physical activity, defined as ability to perform high amplitude  movements conditioned by functional-anatomical factors. Paper aim is the knowledge about flexibility level among physically active people in comparison to sedimentary one and confirming the following hypothesises: the youngest one have better flexibility than the oldest in non-active group.  Physical activity in which stretching techniques play an essential role, have positive influence on flexibility.
Material & methods: Ninety-six men between ages 22-69 were examined. Sixteen research objects were divided to four practicing groups; tricking,  Brazilian jujitsu, yoga, tai chi and Non-active group consisting 80 people. As an evaluation method of the flexibility FTF (Fingertips-to-Floor) test was used before and after training in sequence of four consecutive weeks.
Results: In case of non-active people physical decrease of flexibility was noticed. The biggest decreasing values were observed between the youngest to the second test subject group and in case of the oldest group. In case of any physical activity group, improvement of flexibility was recorded after the training, which was the biggest in the tai chi group. Despite advanced age, the biggest difference in result occurred in yoga and tai chi to respect of non-active group.
Conclusion: The results of our experiment indicate that flexibility measured with FTF test demonstrate decreasing tendency with age. Physically active people have better flexibility. The biggest results are shown in tai chi and yoga group that corresponds with dominance of stretching practice.
Keywords: body elasticity ? martial arts ? non-apparatus test ? physical activity ? sport activity ? stretching

Published online: 17 September 2015
Copyright: ? 2015 the Authors. Published by Archives of Budo : Henryk Knapik conceived the study design. Henryk Knapik, Andrzej Szuszkiewicz, Szczepan D Mateja, Grzegorz Rzetecki, Agata Niewiadomska-Matuła collected the data. Henryk Knapik, Szczepan D Mateja, Grzegorz Rzetecki analysed the data. Henryk Knapik, Andrzej Szuszkiewicz, Szczepan D Mateja, Grzegorz Rzetecki prepared the manuscript. Henryk Knapik, Andrzej Szuszkiewicz secured the funding.
Funding: PRO-EKO-NATURA & Akademia Wing Chun Kung Fu ?Biały Smok?
Conflict of interest: Authors have declared that no competing interest exists
Ethical approval: approved by the Local Ethical Committee
Provenance and peer review: Under responsibility of HMA Congress
Corresponding author: Henryk Knapik. Department of Physiotherapy, Academy of Physical Education in Katowice, Mikołowska 72A, 40-075 Katowice, Poland; email: h.knapik[at]awf.katowice.pl
Open Access License: This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-Non-commercial 4.0 International (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/), which permits use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited, the use is non-commercial and is otherwise in compliance with the license