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  1. #1
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    Default Fascia stretching and muscle growth: Flimsy evidence in support

    After really fucking exhaustive searching of the literature on this subject, I conclude that there is very little support for it in the literature. The best support is posted below.

    on FST-7.com (a site based on working out to stretch the fascia), I've seen Hanny Rimbod claim that "the best bodybuilders have really thin fascia so they grow faster and more." something like that. Anyway, the only support for variation in thickness of fascia comes from a few studies on patients with "compartment syndrome," a painful syndrom in which exercise causes great pain, probably because the fascia is restricting blood flow.

    It HAS been reported that muscle on patients with compartment syndrome appear to be restricted by thicker, perhaps less elastic fascia.

    However, Hanny is talking out his ass when he says fast gainers have thinner fascia. There is absolutely nothing in the literature to support this.

    In fact, it's not even clear if people with compartment syndrome exhibit slow or restricted muscle growth.

    That said, the following study looks at the results of fasciotomy (ie, cutting the fascia), which clearly lessens fascial restriction on the muscle, on muscle fiber growth in patients with compartment syndrome 1 year after fasciotomy.

    the study finds significant growth of muscle fibers 1 year after fasciotomy (in the tibialis i think). What is notable however, is that patients with compartment syndrome already have larger mean fiber diameter than controls.

    This, of course, doesnt really say anything about normal people, and doesnt' say anything about whether fascia actually restrict muscle growth in normal people. In fact, it appears to be believed that the fascia should NOT restrict growth.

    One other notable finding is that patients with compartment syndrome appear to have blunted angiogenesis and resultant capillary density.


    Scand J Med Sci Sports. 2009 Oct 4. [Epub ahead of print]
    Evidence for low muscle capillary supply as a pathogenic factor in chronic compartment syndrome.

    Edmundsson D, Toolanen G, Thornell LE, Stål P.
    Department of Surgery and Perioperative Science, Division of Orthopedics, Umeå University Hospital, Umeå, Sweden.
    There is a paucity of data regarding the pathogenesis of chronic exertional compartment syndrome (CECS), its consequences for the muscles and the effects of treatment with fasciotomy. We analyzed biopsies from the tibialis anterior muscle, from nine patients, obtained during a decompressing fasciotomy and during follow-up 1 year later. Control biopsies were obtained from nine normal subjects. Muscle capillarity, fiber-type composition and fiber area were analyzed with enzyme- and immunohistochemistry and morphometry. At baseline, CECS patients had lower capillary density (273 vs 378 capillaries/mm(2), P=0.008), lower number of capillaries around muscle fibers (4.5 vs 5.7, P=0.004) and lower number of capillaries in relation to the muscle fiber area (1.1 vs 1.5, P=0.01) compared with normal controls. The fiber-type composition and fiber area did not differ, but focal signs of neuromuscular damage were observed in the CECS samples. At 1-year follow-up after fasciotomy, the fiber area and the number of fibers containing developmental myosin heavy chains were increased, but no enhancement of the capillary network was detected. Thus, morphologically, patients with CECS seemed to have reduced microcirculation capacity. Fasciotomy appeared to trigger a regenerative response in the muscle, however, without any increase in the capillary bed.

  2. #2
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    There is a substantial literature also demonstrating that longitundinal stretching of myofibers (over the corse of many hours) causes hypertrophy also.

    However, the time course of the stretching (I'll post up studies later) is sufficiently long as to cast doubt on it's applicability to training programs like fst-7 or dogcrap. These hypertrophy paradigms use stretching on the order of 12 to 72 hours or more.

    What's interesting also is that acute (short term) stretching actually has a negative effect on subsequent strength and as far as i can tell no effect on long-term growth.

    The only fascial stretching bodybuilding concept that fits is site-enhancement oil.

    It should also be noted that in these stretch paradigms, at least one study had determined that a significant portion of the growth was due to non-contractile tissue.

  3. #3
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    by the way, if someone wants a copy of the above paper, pm me with an email address. Be warned, however, that i may get tired of doing this...

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    It is a strongly held myth that site-enhancement oil used to stretch the fascia produces muscle growth.

    If you believe this, then greg valentino should be able to curl 300 lbs. My guess is, his strength actually dropped after he loaded his arms with oil because of poor perfusion and excessive scarring.

    and again, as indicated above, muscle fiber stretching can result in significant development of non-contractile tissue.

    greg.jpg

  5. #5
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    Great read Dr.

  6. #6
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    Thank you dr!

  7. #7
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    What about reports from Poliquin on fascia stretching massage increasing size...especially places like the forearms? He states that people that have trains for much longer see more benefit.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Frosty View Post
    What about reports from Poliquin on fascia stretching massage increasing size...especially places like the forearms? He states that people that have trains for much longer see more benefit.
    Yeah, unfortunately Poliquin also suggest taking 45 grams of fish oil per day as well???

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by natron View Post
    Yeah, unfortunately Poliquin also suggest taking 45 grams of fish oil per day as well???

    And according to him and his experience it works for fast results....I don't see the issue.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Frosty View Post
    And according to him and his experience it works for fast results....I don't see the issue.
    yep, 29lbs of lean muscle mass in 30 days, in a trained athlete!

    That screams bullshit

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by natron View Post
    yep, 29lbs of lean muscle mass in 30 days, in a trained athlete!

    That screams bullshit
    This is where I start to get slightly irritated.

    Let me put it this way--I will listen to a coach that has encyclopedic knowledge and an incredible track record with producing results over people that look at research ANY day. I get sick of hearing people that read research say all this shit when the literature is usually limited for what we want to do, and you have people out there with not only the education, but broad knowledge of many fields as well as extraordinary amounts of experience AND producing results, and we just say they're full of shit because of "research" or whatever the hell you want to say.

    I'm not buying it. That's horse shit.

  12. #12
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    Back to the subject here...

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    Quote Originally Posted by Frosty View Post
    Back to the subject here...
    owned! haha

    the man has some great views, this was just not one of them, just sayin.

    back to the topic

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    poliquin did affect my training positively,, i love tempo time control , plyometric to some level , and truly a big circuit training advocate

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    Quote Originally Posted by natron View Post
    owned! haha

    the man has some great views, this was just not one of them, just sayin.

    back to the topic
    Sorry for the outburst.

    He's made some crazy claims with gains and fat loss with athletes. However keep in mind there may be circumstances that aren't exactly "normal". It's not like he took Jay Cutler and had him put on 29 lbs of mass in a month during a bulk. It was probably some athlete that let his diet go to shit during season, lost mass as well, and then Poliquin got his hands on him and got his diet, training, and supplementation back in order and BAM. Add to that that the athlete probably is well conditioned (which IMO helps with faster results) and also may have good genetics.

    I've had some things happen to me that were similar and I've produced insane before and after pics in a matter of 6 weeks. In fact for shits and giggles, this fat loss occurred in just 6 weeks:
    Attached Images Attached Images

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