T Nation

Stretching

In stretching, does the muscle actually
get longer or is it the tendons?

Will stretching actually make your muscles bigger to a small degree after time?

         radman

It’s mostly the muscle lengthening.

Stretching doesn’t directly make you bigger. But there are a lot of ideas around stretching that say it contributes to strength development. One is called fascial stretching. You get a muscle all pumped up, then you either stretch it with a conventional stretching exercise, or do a weight training exercise that puts the target muscle through an extended range of motion. An example for hamstrings might be to do 3 sets of 20 for leg curls, then follow up with heavy set of 8 for stiff-legged deads, or just stretch your hamstrings “past the point of pain” for about 10 seconds.

I tried it and it just made me sore, but I didn't keep it up because it was interferring with the rest of my training. The guy that promotes it claims 20% strength gains. It's supposed to disinhibit the Golgi Tendon Reflex, which contributes to greater strength. -Eric