New England Patriots prepare for practice


Click on the following links to see photos of New England Patriots players as they prepare for practice:


New England Patriots linebackers, from left, Tedy Bruschi, Mike Vrabel and Larry Izzo stretch during football practice in Foxborough, Mass., Wednesday, Sept. 10, 2008…/Athletes/NFL/Ty+Warren/…

New England Patriots Richard Seymour and Ty Warren talk while stretching before practice

As you see, the photos shows Patriots players doing static stretches, in one photo even reclining on the field. What could be the rationale for football players to perform static stretches before a football practice? After all, a football practice consists of mainly dynamic actions—even explosive power actions.

I understand that at some times, in some cases, a static stretch before dynamic exercises may help. For example, someone with a patellofemoral syndrome might want to lower the tonus of the tensor fascia lata and gluteus medius before running or doing squats. (Of course, such a way of managing this problem is only temporary because it does not address the root cause of the excessive tension of these muscles.) But both photos show at least three Patriots players doing the same stretches. Do they all have the same neuromuscular disorder that can be temporarily fixed by a static stretch? If so, don’t their PTs know better, more permanent methods of treating it? There are methods of reducing excessive muscle tension with simple manipulations and easy exercises, so the athletes do not have to begin practice with static stretches and all their drawbacks. Why not use those methods? Is it because others prepare for practice in the same way? Or because the team wins most of the time, so why change anything? Yes, one can do this and still win, and keep on winning. The strength of talent combined with hard work can overcome much… but why not make it easier on oneself?

To sum it up: I am interested in coach Bill Belichick’s rationale for having his football players do static stretches before practice. He is one of the best coaches in the NFL, so I assume he doesn’t do things without knowing why.

Request for help:

One of our authors and my friend, Piotr Drabik, has disappeared in September of 2006 after he landed on the island of Kaua’i, Hawaii, where he was seen on airport security cameras. He arrived there from Edmonton, Alberta (Canada), through Salt Lake City, Utah, and Honolulu, Hawaii. We (his friends at Stadion Publishing) were assisting in the investigation of his disappearance. The investigation was ineffective and eventually the case was dropped by all involved authorities.

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Unbreakable Umbrella vs. Watermelon

3 Responses to “New England Patriots prepare for practice”

  1. 1 new2bjj

    I have tried to have the kids do dynamic stretches in my sons Soccer team workouts, and have met almost violent resitance when I bring it up to my fellow coaches. Guys that can’t kick up to their waist, tell me that static stretching is good, while I can demonstrate head high kicking without a warmup at 49. Oh well, people live in denial about so many things, what is one more?

    They figure that they were shown this by their old high school coach (having never made it past high school sports, but forever living in the belief that they just missed going professional) so it must be the way to go.

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