1. To stretch or not to stretch: the role of stretching in injury prevention and performance – McHugh – 2009 – Scandinavian Journal of Medicine & Science in Sports – Wiley Online Library (whole journals)
M. P. McHugh and C. H. Cosgrave, “To stretch or not to stretch: the role of stretching in injury prevention and performance,” Scandinavian Journal of Medicine and Science in Sports, vol. 20, no. 2, pp. 169–181, 2010.
Excellent review of all literature
A general consensus is that stretching in addition to warm-up does not affect the incidence of overuse injuries. There is evidence that pre-participation stretching reduces the incidence of muscle strains but there is clearly a need for further work.
2. Warming-up and stretching for improved physical performance and prevention of sports-related injuries. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/3849057
Good review for introduction as it describes temperature-dependent, reduce the incidence of injury, increased flexibility and improve physical performance from warm up and types of stretch protocols.
3. Warm-up and stretching in the prevention of muscular injury. – PubMed – NCBI
Certain techniques and protocols show a positive outcome on deterring injuries. As a result, a warm-up and stretching protocol should be implemented 15 minutes prior to physical activity. In addition, current information regarding improvements in flexibility is reviewed.
4. Stretching and injury prevention: an obscure relationship. – PubMed – NCBIMethod: literature review
Increasing the flexibility of a muscle-tendon unit promotes better performances and decreases the number of injuries. No scientifically based prescription for stretching exercises exists and no conclusive statements can be made about the relationship of stretching and athletic injuries. Type of sports activity in which an individual is participating. Sports involving bouncing and jumping activities with a high intensity of stretch-shortening cycles (SSCs) [e.g. soccer and football] require a muscle-tendon unit that is compliant enough to store and release the high amount of elastic energy that benefits performance in such sports. Injury results where an insufficient compliant muscle-tendon unit, the demands in energy absorption and release may rapidly exceed the capacity of the muscle-tendon unit. Warm up should increase the compliance of the muscle-tendon unit. Sports activity with low-intensity, or limited SSCs (e.g. jogging, cycling and swimming) there is no need for a very compliant muscle-tendon unit since most of its power generation is a consequence of active (contractile) muscle work that needs to be directly transferred (by the tendon) to the articular system to generate motion. Stretching (and making the tendon compliant) is not advantageous.